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Panthers Give Jaromir Jagr a Frankenjersey Birthday Cake

For all cake photos, click to enlarge

Jaromir Jagr turned 44 (!) yesterday, so the Panthers presented him with a jersey-themed birthday cake — half-Panthers and half-Czech Republic. Pretty cool of them to be willing to cut their own logo in half like that.

Here’s a slightly better look. As you can see, they even included “stitching” to show how the two jersey halves were held together:

And look, they even including the “stitching” along all the seams of the collar, stripes, etc.:

Too bad about the logo creep on the Czech side. But other than that, it’s an impressive piece of work!

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Photo by Mary Bakija; click to enlarge

How to get on my good side (hint: rhymes with “bacon”): I receive emails that say, “I’ll be visiting NYC next weekend — could we meet up for a beer?” or even “Could I swing by Uni Watch HQ to say hello?” on a semi-regular basis. I usually politely decline such requests, in part because I’m busy and in part because, you know, I’d like to preserve a little bit of privacy in my life.

Occasionally, though, I say yes. One such instance came yesterday, when I welcomed reader Dan Pfeifer into my home. Dan had written to me several days earlier, saying that he and his wife were flying in from Milwaukee and — here’s the key part — offering to bring me something from Wisconsin. As you know, I’m a sucker for just about anything Badger State-related, plus I could tell from Dan’s emails that he was a swell guy, so I asked if he’d be willing to bring me some Nueske’s bacon. Nueske’s had been on my mind because another Wisconsin-based reader, John Okray, had very generously sent me a Neuske’s shipment back in December (thanks, John!), and it was spectacular, so I was hungry for more.

Dan graciously obliged, and yesterday we had a little summit meeting here at Uni Watch HQ. Turns out he does P.A. announcing for Marquette soccer and radio broadcasts for the Lakeshore Chinooks (that’s a college summer league baseball team), which makes sense, because he has an excellent voice. Peach of a guy, too. Great meeting you, Dan — best of luck in your broadcasting career.

Meanwhile, if anyone else wants to send or bring me some Nueske’s bacon (or for that matter any other kind of meat), I certainly won’t try to stop you. And if anyone from Nueske’s is reading this, allow me point out that the coveted title of “Official Bacon of Uni Watch” is currently vacant. Just sayin’.

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Click to enlarge

Collector’s Corner
By Brinke Guthrie

This is the slow time of the sports year for me. At least pitchers and catchers start reporting tomorrow, and it’s an even year for the Giants, so I’m looking forward to a World Series-winning season. But I still have the NFL on my mind, so here’s a rather massive set of NFL helmet plaques. Twenty four of ’em ready to go- have your checkbook ready!

Here are the rest of this week’s picks:

• One of the best logos in pro sports history, at least in my opinion, is shown here on this 1971 Atlanta Flames belt buckle.

• Here’s a set of four mid-1970s NFL goalpost helmet kits in pretty good condition. One goalpost hook is broken off, though.

• Got your tough, sturdy California Golden Seals tote bag right here. Never could quite figure out that logo.

• Sure looks like Catfish on the mound for this 1977 MLB All-Star Game program cover. Why no “NY” on the cap?

• This appears to be precisely the same jersey I used to have — a 1970s Cowboys jersey made by Southland. The numbers were kinda painted on, heat-pressed, whatever you wanna call ’em, and the stripes on the sleeves had the black outlines. I had two of these, No. 23 and No. 30.

• Flyers fans, keep your pencils sharp with this vintage Flyers hockey puck pencil sharpener!

• Here we have a pair of L.A. Angels earrings from the 1960s.

• Join the Buffalo Sabres Booster Club and get this jacket!

• Nice artwork on this 1975 Philadelphia Eagles yearbook. Anyone know what “Eagle 4 is history” means? And the June 1975 edition of Football Digest wonders, “Kenny Anderson: Is he too cool?” In this classic Bengals look, he most certainly is. Great fellow, too.

• More cool 1975 cover art: We’ve got Big Red: Story of the Football Cardinals.

Follow Brinke on Twitter: @brinkeguthrie

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Culinary Corner: A few weeks ago The New York Times ran a feature about something called Mississippi Roast, a slow-cooker pot roast recipe that has become something of an internet sensation while flying under the radar of the established food media. The article is really interesting (if you care at all about meat, cooking, regional foods, or Southern culture, I strongly recommend checking it out here), the recipe looked simple and delicious, so the Tugboat Captain and I gave it a try on Sunday — a perfect day for a slow-cooked roast, because the temperate outside was in the single digits. Here’s how it went:

1. We got ourselves a big hunk of a boneless chuck roast. The recipe calls for 3 to 4 pounds, but the best-looking one at the supermarket was about 4.7 pounds, so that’s what we got (for all of these photos, you can click to enlarge):

2. I applied plenty of salt and pepper to the roast, followed by a dusting of about a quarter-cup of flour.

3. The next steps called for searing the exterior of a roast and then transferring it to a slow cooker. But I don’t have a slow cooker — we were planning to make the roast in a Dutch oven instead. This actually saved a step, or at least saved a dirty skillet, because I was able to sear and brown the meat in the Dutch oven (you can’t do that in a slow cooker) and then just leave it there. So that’s what I did, using a combination of corn oil and smoked duck fat to sear and brown the meat. If you don’t have smoked duck fat — and let’s face it, you probably don’t — corn or vegetable oil is fine:

4. The next step was to add 6 tablespoons of butter and a dozen pepperoncini peppers to the pot:

5. Now came the controversial part. The original recipe, developed by a Mississippi woman named Robin Chapman, calls for the inclusion of a packet of of dry ranch-dressing mix and a packet of dry “au jus” gravy. The Times, in a move that some hailed as an improvement and others decried as elitist, replaced the ranch mix with a small batch of homemade ranch dressing and scrapped the gravy mix altogether. I kinda liked the idea of doing it the original way, but the Tugboat Captain wanted to make the ranch dressing, so that’s what she did. It’s easy to make: You just mix 2 tablespoons mayo, 2 teaspoons cider vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon dried dill, 1/4 teaspoon paprika, and, if you want, a teaspoon of buttermilk. (We didn’t want to have to buy an entire quart of buttermilk just for this recipe, so we cheated by mixing milk and lemon juice.) When the dressing was ready, we poured it on top of the meat:

6. The roast is supposed to cook in the slow cooker for eight hours on the “low” setting. The consensus on the internet was that this translates to about three hours at 350 º in a Dutch oven, so after three hours we took it out and had a look. It’s a little hard to see in this next photo, but the butter, the dressing, and the meat’s rendered juices had combined to form a very rich-looking puddle of liquid in the pot, and the meat felt extremely soft and tender to the touch:

7. I transferred the meat to a platter and poured the liquid and peppers over it:

8. I used two forks to shred the meat, similar to what you’d do with pulled pork. It was very easy — the meat was super-tender and gave way with very little effort:

9. By this time our friend Carrie had come over, so the three of us sat down to enjoy the roast, accompanied by some Brussels sprouts and good bread:

It was really good. Like, really, really good. The dressing and peppers combined to give a kick to the melted butter. We all ate plenty, but there was still enough meat left over for us to make tacos the next day. Highly recommended.

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T-Shirt Club reminder: In case you missed it last week, the first Uni Watch T-Shirt Club design of 2016 is available for ordering, but today and tomorrow are the last two days. Here’s the design, including a close-up of the jock tag graphic (for all of these, you can click to enlarge):

The Uni Watch ballplayer shown on the shirt is intended to evoke a time when sports graphics and mascots were built around fun, not ferocity. And as you can see, he totally Gets Itâ„¢ when it comes to wearing his uniform, with lots of old-school details like a flapless batting helmet, one batting glove, picture-perfect stirrups, and more.

The shirt is available here until 11pm Eastern tomorrow. For further info on how the T-Shirt Club will work this year, click here. Thanks for your consideration.

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The Ticker
By Paul

Baseball News: Check it out: Babe Ruth in a basketball uniform. ”¦ The West Michigan Whitecaps are letting fans vote on the team’s Social Media Night jerseys. ”¦ Similarly, Kalamazoo Growlers fans can vote on the team’s “Emojersey” design. ”¦ Here are this year’s uni combos for Notre Dame. The grey appears to be one of those faux-flannel jobbies (from @wrenwag). ”¦ Interesting that this year’s Florida spring training sleeve patches look a bit like the old Federal League patches. An unintentional coincidence, I’m fairly certain (from Brian Wulff). ”¦ Current MLB pitchers Matt Harvey and Andrew Miller both played for UNC, which has both of them on its bobblehead schedule this season (from James Gilbert). ”¦ The Round Rock Express are holding a design contest for the team’s cancer-awareness jersey (from Jim Howicz). ”¦ New uniforms for the Cincy Bearcats. ”¦ New uniforms for Creighton. ”¦ A’s OF Joe Rudi had his name written on his batting glove (good spot by Rudy Gutierrez).

NFL News: Here’s a very crisp version of next season’s Super Bowl logo. ”¦ Art Savokinas collects Steelers items and came across these two law enforcement patches with Steelers hypocycloids. ”¦ Check out the amazing tribute to Marshawn Lynch that a Seahawks fan etched into the dirt on a truck. ”¦ Hmmm, what if the Packers’ logo looked more like a football? I kinda like it!

College Football News: Another example of Nike failing its most basic responsibility to a client: UGA wants its shiny silver pants back, but Nike can’t provide them. Go to that link and search on “Dawgs finally” for details (from Austin Gillis).

Hockey News: Check out Denver’s very nice throwback jerseys. Here’s a short video of them being sewn (from Danny C.). ”¦ Fans can vote on the three finalists for the Hamilton Bulldogs’ new look (from Aarson Husul). ”¦ Check out the NHL/MLB cross-pollination going on in this mascot photo. ”¦ Here’s something I’ve never seen before: a nun in a Blackhawks jersey (from Michael Alper). ”¦ Here’s another article on the Coyotes’ youth jersey-swap program.

NBA News: Here’s one observer’s ranking of NBA team names. ”¦ Looks like the Kings are about to become the latest NBA team with a throwback court design.

College and High School Hoops News: The NCAA has lifted a ban on pregame dunks, and fans are loving it. ”¦ Another women’s team wearing pink two days ago: Illinois. ”¦ Mississippi wore a memorial patch on Saturday for volleyball and track and field athlete Ty Laporte, who died on Thursday night in a traffic accident. ”¦ While looking for a photo of that patch, I noticed that Mississippi F Sebastian Saiz has been wearing sunglasses on the court. Why? Because he recently had eye surgery. ”¦ The 1972 Shenandoah High School team in Indiana had some seriously crazy shorts (nice find by Marc Viquez). ”¦ How do you know when the pink thing has gone too far? When you have pink vs. pink. That’s North Carolina Central University hosting Florida A&M (from Jonathan Duren).

Soccer News: This is weird: Fox Sports televises the Champions League and the Daytona 500, so they took five Champions League stars and reimagined them as NASCAR drivers (from Tanner Welch).

Grab Bag: New lacrosse helmets for UNC, Syracuse, Michigan, and Virginia. ”¦ DIY genius Wafflebored has a Uni Watch 15th-anniversary decal on his sewing machine. ”¦ Joe Dawisha will be conducting a weekly “Paint Scheme of the Week” vote during the NASCAR season. Here’s the one for this week. ”¦ Pretty sure we’ve seen this before, but this old uni-centric Superman comic book cover is too funny not to include again (from Sam Page). ”¦ Here’s the logo for Paris’s 2024 Olympic bid (thanks, Brinke).

Comments (54)

    Forgive me if this detail is actually in there but I somehow failed to read it, but Paul, did you include the au jus power or equivalent?

    Also, great move switching to a Dutch oven. On top of saving the labor of cleaning the skillet, a Dutch oven avoids the waste of disposing of the valuable, delicious stuck-to-the-pan drippings. Finishing in the same pot as the sear preserves those drippings and incorporates them into the gravy.

    Does Commissioner Lukas have any comment regarding the likelihood of a Neuske’s Bacon ad appearing on a Uniwatch T-Shirt in the coming years?

    I for one, would find that hilarious, should the NBA decide to go in that direction…

    So, what I’m hearing, from sources close to the commissioner, is that ads are inevitable.

    Might I suggest for your next hot dog purchase Kogel’s Vienna or for bologna Kogel’s original or Olive loaf? Their not “sexy” meat categories but they are much better than anything else I’ve had.

    I’ve never sampled olive loaf since it never seems to appear on any deli tray i’ve encountered. is it pretty much just olive-studded bologna or some other meat amalgam?

    I know it’s the slow time of the years. However, it’s the start of the college baseball season. And in my (very humble) opinion, I find college baseball uniforms among the most interesting. Just sayin’.

    Slow? SLOW?? Pfft.

    Not only is it NBA and college basketball season, but World Cup ski jumping is going on, it’s men’s college volleyball season, indoor soccer is heading to the playoffs and Spring Training is practically upon us. Curling is in in full swing as well. Oh yean, and then there’s hockey.

    Y’all call it slow…I call it one of the most wonderful times of the year.

    Like most Uni-Watchers, I do miss the unique Super Bowl logos. However, the current template is much better than the previous one. Small victories!

    How has the faux flannel baseball jersey not become more popular? It’s a great traditional look, which is contrary to UA’s standard operating procedure. Can we get an investigation?

    And to think, I almost bought a boneless chuck roast yesterday. I think I’m going to have to swallow my fear of butter just to try this. (I’m always looking for excuses to bust out the crockpot.)

    Yeah, well, I used to stick my finger in the margarine when I was little. It felt cool, OK? One time my sister caught me doing it, made me dip my finger down as deep as I could, scoop it out and eat it. From then on, grease-based bread spreads were pretty much ruined for me.

    I can second that the roast was damn good. Wouldn’t categorize it as “Southern” by any stretch, more like – as one commenter to the NYT article pointed out – what I’ve ordered in Greek delis before as “Italian Beef.” But that said, damn good.

    Agreed that it’s not really Southern per se — only mentioned the Southern aspect in my text because the person/blogger who popularized it is Southern, as are many of the people quoted in the NYT article I linked to. So it’s sort of a Southern *story,* even though it isn’t a particularly Southern dish.

    Interesting that next year’s Super Bowl logo doesn’t have an image of the stadium, like the past 5 logos. Wonder if this is the final design or not.

    A quick Google search didn’t result in any Super Bowl LI logos with a representation of the building. The logo Super Bowl LII includes an outline of the Vikings new stadium though.

    If they’d returned to the style of XLV-XLIX, with smaller Roman numerals below the “Super Bowl” bar, then they could easily do the stadium image again. But since they decided to make the numerals larger and put them above the bar, they can’t put anything in front of it without risking obscuring the L and making it look like “II”.

    What’s especially odd to me is the red added in to the logo. While it’s nice to have a splash of non-metallic color back in the logo, I’m just curious as to why red.

    What’s interesting, though, is that they are finally adding color to the logo, which wasn’t done for Super Bowls 45-49.

    I would love for Georgia to go back to the shiny britches. Frankly, I wish all teams would go back to them. I don’t know why everybody had them, now hardly anybody does. I was watching a replay of the Steelers/Cardinals SB the other day and Pittsburgh had shiny gold britches then and REALLY looked sharp!!!

    The Kalamazoo Growlers link takes me to a 404 page. Apparently this is the correct link: link

    Also, looking through the list of emojis they have, a certain one is identified as “Pile of chocolate”. Err, yeah… that’s not chocolate.

    Finally, for the Whitecaps… is “None of the Above” an option? Because all three of those designs are pretty hideous.

    “Also, looking through the list of emojis they have, a certain one is identified as “Pile of chocolate”. Err, yeah… that’s not chocolate.”

    I know the guy who submitted that particular emoji to Unicode. You are correct, a pile of chocolate it is not. (It’s not a beehive either, which is another alternate name for it.)

    Paul, you flatter.

    Thanks again for allowing me the privilege of getting to see Uni Watch HQ and getting to shake your hand. I really do feel honored & humbled, not to mention the food conversation was just as enlightening as the rest of the talk.

    The theme of the visit was gratitude, and I just think it’s good to take a moment and think about how Paul has given us this lively forum. Once upon a time, between patterns mowed in infield grass and the occasional sight of a blood uniform without an NOB, I think we all thought we were the only ones who noticed “that stuff.” Then, we found a place like this, where we not only could discuss it, but discuss it in an in-depth manner and reveal our thoughts about how and why such things occur and whether or not they’re done for practicality, looks or, more nefariously, just to make someone money. Without this site, however, who knows if such a community would exist.

    I was lucky enough to do so in person yesterday, but I’ve done so in comments a number of times and I’d encourage everyone else to do so (in comments, leave the man at peace in Uni Watch HQ) at least once or twice, too: Say thanks to Paul for working this hard at documenting the obscura, giving us a language with words like Nikelace and NNOB, and just giving all of us who Get Itâ„¢ something new to Getâ„¢ every day. It’s a great thing and thanks again, Paul, for making it happen. Like I say, I feel honored just to have met you and the only regret I have is that, after my wife read your piece, she wishes she could have been there, too.

    Word. I’ve been to two Sheep Station gatherings. Always a great time. Last time, I was decked out in Montreal stuff, and Paul asked me an opinion on whether I liked Gary Carter’s red equipment with the Expos. I probably said something like “well it’s a color, and the Expos always seemed to be red AND blue in the 80’s, not ‘red with blue’ or vice versa, plus it’s personal equipment, so it’s fine by me because it isn’t Mike Napoli in black gear with the Texas Rangers.”
    The man is amazingly talented over his life’s work (of which Uni Watch is just a small bit) and made me feel special, along with the community.
    Cheers guys. OK, back to studying for the bar exam.

    Regarding the Ruth-in-a-basketball-uni shot: When did kneepads disappear? You see them all the time in old basketball shots (I mean really old, like 1940s and earlier). Less so in the 50s. When I started paying attention in the mid-60s they were pretty rare, but you still saw them occasionally. But I doubt I’ve seen a college or pro player wearing them since around 1975.

    When did they disappear for good, and why? I’m guessing it’s because they slow you down, or at least players imagine they do, and basketball through the decades evolved into much more of a speed game.

    I doubt I’ve seen a college or pro player wearing them since around 1975.

    Agreed that they’re now largely gone, but there were definitely players wearing them post-1975, including Magic Johnson and Patrick Ewing:


    I make a similar roast here in Chicago to mimic the city’s famous Italian Beef. Cook chuck roast for 8 hours with a package of ranch dressing mix, a jar of hot giardanera peppers, and a touch of beef stock. Shred when finished and pile on french rolls. Tender, spicy, and juicy!

    Funny how Nike cant yet come up with Georgias silver pants. Yet they have no problems with new unis every week for teams?????

    So happy Kevin Harvick has a Busch sponsored car this year, that looks so good. If only they put white wheels on it…

    The link to the ranking of NBA team names was pretty good, but the team they ranked #1, Detroit Pistons, the logo they posted for them hasn’t been used for over 10 years.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the Steelton patch is inspired directly by the U.S. Steel logo as opposed to the Pittsburgh Steelers logo.

    Re: the NASCAR soccer firesuits.

    Note that four of them have the logos of Middle-Eastern airlines.

    Just saying. Free publicity?

Comments are closed.