The Elbow staff
PHILADELPHIA, PA — After two weeks of being ruthlessly made fun of for his hideous appearance, Flyers mascot Gritty has taken a leave of absence from the team.
A Flyers spokesman today told reporters that the 32-year-old performer had been confined to his bedroom for the past couple of days after hearing nothing but negative feedback about the way he looks from the press and numerous late night talk shows.
"He's been bashed non-stop from pillar to post," the official said. "All he wanted to do was bring people joy, but instead they focus on his forest of body hair and tweaker eyes."
"Everyone thinks that just because our city puts on this tough, macho exterior that we can take all sorts of abuse. But some words do hurt."
NHL Mascots' Association (NHLMA) representative Stephen Moore said on Monday that the lives of NHL mascots are often more depressing than their jocular appearance makes them out to be.
"Unfortunately, most people don't realize how many of our great mascots have had to call it quits due to hurt feelings," he said.
"You might remember Columbus' old mascot Boomer. He was placed in a substance abuse program halfway through the 2010-11 season after being told for so long that he looked like some sort of bong-penis hybrid."
"You hear that on repeat for six months straight, and you start to believe what they're saying about you in the news."
The Flyers hope that Gritty will be healthy enough to scare the shit out of the children in time for the holidays.