NHL/Philadelphia Flyers

The internet’s favorite mascot is powered by coffee and bacon

Tim Nelson
November 20, 2018

When he first rose from the depths of the Wells Fargo Center in late September, the new Philadelphia Flyers mascot Gritty looked like something out of a Werner Herzog ayahuasca tripor a lumberjack who’s stayed at a rave way too long. Devoid of any obvious connection to Philadelphia or its hockey team, Gritty arrived like a bolt of orange lightning that instantly set the internet ablaze.

But as we adjusted our eyes to the sight of the googly-eyed beast, the world realized that Gritty was the perfect vehicle for surrealist humor in these absurd times. Everyone from Flyers fans to late night-TV audiences grew to love his goofy charm and offbeat antics. Leftists embraced him as a rallying symbol in the fight against creeping fascism and white nationalism. Hell, he even earned write-in votes in (allegedly) 46 states during the midterm elections.

In short, Gritty has captivated our collective imagination like no one else in 2018. That’s why we had to catch up with the Claude Giroux-loving cult hero to find out more about how he starts his day. Gritty was kind enough to take a break from stuffing children in the penalty box to chat about about his love of bacon, his cheat day breakfasts, and even more of his thoughts on bacon.

You can catch Gritty and his mascot frenemies (not to mention all 31 NHL teams) on NHL.TV, a hub for hockey available on all major platforms and devices.

Extra Crispy: What’s your breakfast routine on the morning of a Flyers game? Is there anything in particular that gets you amped up?
Gritty: I’m a big sides guy—side of bacon, side of toast (cinnamon raisin swirl), side short stack of pancakes, side of fruit for the fiber. Obvs gotta have a protein while I crush my coffee.

Do you do breakfast differently when the Flyers are out of town?
Away games are my cheat days, so I go all in. Dulce de leche stuffed French toast with whipped cream and strawberries is a delight. But definitely still a side of bacon.

Are you a coffee drinker? Does caffeine have anything to do with your constantly enthusiastic expression?
LOVE coffee, also, what’s wrong with my face?

It sounds like you were subsisting on hot dogs at the Wells Fargo Center for a while before you were “discovered.” How has your diet changed since becoming a public figure?
Once a Grit, always a Grit, so hot dogs are in the regular rotation. BUT HAVE YOU GUYS EVER HEARD OF BACON????? WOW WOW WOW.

If you could invent one food item for sale at Flyers games, what would it be?
Bacon. Possibly on a stick?

Is there anything you eat in the morning that helps you maintain your healthy orange glow?
Nothing in particular, this is all au natural—my love for the Flyers SEEPS through my pores.

If you could assemble your perfect brunch with any other mascots, who’s sitting at the table with you and why?
Obvi the Philly mascot crew. Only if Bailey is the bus boy.

Who on the Flyers do you particularly enjoy dining with?
Any meal spent with Claude [Giroux] is a meal worth savoring. We usually go halfsies on a sampler.

What are your tips for surviving breakfast or brunch with a fan of another team in the Metropolitan division?
“Accidentally” “forget” “your wallet” (then back away slowly).

Given that you received some write-in votes this election cycle, is there any chance you’d ever want to run for office? If so, what breakfast legislation would you introduce?
I’d rather watch The Office from the couch with a big plate of bacon, if that’s what you’re asking. In my experience, running and watching The Office at the same time can be detrimental. Not enough air flow and cuts down on bacon eating time.

From the look of it, you’ve already been getting into the Christmas spirit. What are some of your favorite holiday treats?
Unsure if you’ve heard, but I am THE holiday treat.

I know it’s not breakfast, but since you’re a Philly guy, I have to ask: Pat’s or Geno’s?
Yes.  

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