Chase Utley Sponsors Better Mural Than You’ll Ever Paint


No wonder he’s so exhausted! Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE

Mural to feature message of animal kindness, not Brad Lidge

Everyone knows about that glorious Phillies mural on 24th and Walnut, injecting wild colors and baseball memories to a riverside that used to just feature midday joggers and whatever was currently mutating in the toxic depths of the Schuylkill.

As we saunter past, sweating like pigs, it offers a window to the past, giving us pause and a reason to appreciate art.  Why, there’s Richie Ashburn, having an at-bat!  And look at Tug up there, winning the 1980 World Series!  And by george, if that isn’t Shibe Park, home of the 1964 team that lost 10 games in a row just in time to not make the playoffs.

Yes, we have a rich, unique, ghastly past, and it is worth celebrating/pretending it did not happen.  Players and fans alike may look upon it now, awash in admiration of the Phillies legacy and happy just to be a part of it.

Or, they can say “You know what we’re gonna do?  We’re gonna make our OWN mural!  And it’s gonna be WAY BETTER than this one!  And it’s gonna have PUPPIES.”

Chase Utley is a natural competitor, which, when combined with his love of animals, results in things like the second of he and his wife Jennifer’s Be Kind to Animals murals.  Painted over the course of the last year by artist Tom Walton, students and teachers from Russel H. Conwell Middle School, Jane Golden, and other volunteers, the mural will convey the Utley Foundation’s mission statement of keeping animals safe from humanity’s more horrible inclinations, and be displayed at the McVeigh Recreation Center on East Ontario Street.

So now the Phillies mural, celebrating the history of our beloved baseball team, looks a bit purposeless next to the Utleys’ mural, which has a message and a purpose and was painted by children.  But I guess we can’t be surprised that Chase wins again.  He always does.

Speaking of which, how the hell do you get to be the middle school chosen to paint Chase Utley’s Puppy Mural?  My middle school called it a win if they could get the lunch tables moved off the floor in time for dodge ball.