Chicago Sun-Times
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So, about that 'Ozzie Mows Wrigley Field' shirt...

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Ozzie Guillen might not like coming to Wrigley Field, but the White Sox manager seemed to be having a good time there Wednesday.

Before the Sox' 4-1 victory over the Cubs, he greeted Cubs manager Lou Piniella on the field and lifted up his black warmup jacket to reveal a Cubbie-blue T-shirt that read, ''Ozzie Mows Wrigley.'' The two shared a hearty laugh about Guillen's new purchase, which he made that morning outside the stadium that he says makes him ''puke.''

Rich Callow, the vendor who sold the shirt to Guillen, said he saw Guillen arriving at the ballpark.

''I told Ozzie, 'Hey you want to see a T-shirt?''' Callow said. ''He came over and looked at it and started laughing. He liked it a lot and wanted to buy it.''

Callow said Guillen didn't pay for the shirt himself but had someone else come back outside to pay the $20 price.

Callow didn't know Guillen intended to wear it.

The shirt features a caricature of a smiling Guillen pushing a lawnmower with the Wrigley scoreboard in the background.

''If I made a shirt like that, they would have me back on the couch for my sensitivity training,'' Guillen joked.

The stereotypical nature of the grass-cutting theme came under criticism last month after a sports blog posted a picture of a St. Louis Cardinals fan wearing a shirt that said ''Zambrano mows my lawn" -- a reference to Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano -- and a picture of a man cutting grass while wearing a sombrero.

Theresa Nagle, who designed the shirt and has several souvenir stands throughout the Wrigleyville area, said she didn't receive any complaints.

''Today we were selling the shirts and every Sox fan that was at the game didn't take it as offensive,'' Nagle said. ''Obviously, if Ozzie bought the shirt and wore it, I don't think he took it offensively. In his eyes, he does like that shirt. If he didn't like it, he wouldn't wear it.''

Nagle said the shirt shouldn't be taken seriously.

''We're not against the Sox and it wasn't meant as anything bad against him,'' she said. ''It was meant jokingly."

As the rain-shortened two-game series wraps up this afternoon, Nagle anticipates increased sales thanks to Guillen.

''I'm pretty sure sales are going to double on that shirt since he wore it all day,'' she said.

*Special thanks to Joe Cowley*

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25 Comments

So how is this any different than the stupid "Zambrano mows my lawn..." t-shirt some clowns in St. Louis designed?

Or the "Horry Kow..." t-shirts from last season...

Yeah, Ozzie thought it was funny; because Ozzie is bigger than most people. He's definitely bigger than the dummy that designed the t-shirt and thought there was nothing "insensitive" about it.

Ozzie took a dumb, racist stereotype and threw right back in their face. "...at least I don't sell t-shirts in the rain..." BEST QUOTE! Good work Ozzie! Don't let know anyone think they can get you.

As for idiot Cubs fan that made the shirts...keep it up. You have a roster with plenty of Latino players (along with African-Americans, and an Asian - who, by the way, you did a great job of exploiting last season) - see how players will think twice about playing in front of a packed house of bigoted transplants.

Oh yeah, you're probably not even from Chicago, either.

Maybe it's supposed to be a "joke", but I bet there are PLENTY of people who don't think it's very funny. Getting a laugh by making fun of someone else's race/ethnicity/nationality, etc. is pretty lame. Maybe we should find out what ethnicity the shirt designer is, and do up a design to "honor" her??? I'm sure she would think it's very funny... right?

What else can one expect from the racist frat boy fan base the Cubs have?

Ozzie is a class act & put that dumb vendor in his place.

Sox win...AGAIN.

I don't get what the offensive part is. Why should Sox fans be mad?

Proof that Trib Entertainment Team fans are ignorant racists. Their South Skokie field has nothing to mow. Can't mow crap.

Stop being so PC ... Good for OZZIE .. he can take a joke and actually he is mowing Wrigley he mowed down the competition yesterday 4 to 1 ... hopefully more today

I'm a Cubs fan, but this is soo stupid. First of all it's not even original since the Cards fans already did it. Second are you trying to make fun of all Hispanic players or just Ozzie? You can't even tell. Why not make a shirt specific to something Ozzie said?

So What is worse Sox Fans? Racism or Gay Bashing? The suddenly sensitive southsiders have never had a problem stereotyping all Cubs fans as homosexuals and I have never seen any articles making light of the plenty of tasteless Homosexual Bashing t-shirts that surround The Cell. People are people...yes or no?

How is this less insulting than the shirts sold outside U.S. Cellular? "Wrigley Field: World's Largest Gay Bar" is equally stupid and insulting. That shirt pre-dates this one by at least 5 years. Both (all) teams are guilty of it, and each shirt is only sold to the lowest common denominator on each side of town.

rey:
saying all cub fans are racist frat boys is stereotyping all the same. stop being a hypocrite and find yourself a life.

The media always makes a big deal about the racist shirts sold outside of Wrigley Field, but they never make a big deal about the homophobic shirts about Cubs fans sold outside U.S. Cellular Field. It's joke. Everybody acts like the only morons in the city are on the Northside.

I designed the shirt - a general concept was brought to me by a friend and together we created what the vendors have in their hands. I am in fact from Chicago, born and raised in the city. Our company, the company that created that shirt you also remember, the wonderful "Horry Kow", employs over 25 Chicagoans, and is located in Chicago. While everyone resides in Chicago, our workforce is very diverse with ethnic backgrounds ranging from Hispanic to African American to Asian to White Boy.

While this design does display a stereotype, I argue that it is not racist. The notion of racism invokes an assumption that "racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race" (The English Dictionary worded it so much more eloquently than I could have). This shirt, on the other hand, rejects the concept of racism, duly noted by Ozzie (a manager of a MLB baseball team, not a landscaper) wearing it himself. It is true evidence that there is no inferiority inherent in his race and ethnicity.

On the other hand, I do not think that there is "nothing 'insensitive' about it". It is fairly insensitive to the stereotype that the majority of Hispanics are landscapers, and that the profession of landscaping is somehow 'inferior', but sometimes Irony stems from an abrasive concept and becomes something more; humor. As this paper reported, Ozzie showed this shirt to Piniella before the game and "the two shared a hearty laugh." Laughter is proceeded from humor and, thus, the effect of the shirt is reached.

I saw a shirt that said "Welcome to Wrigley Field: The world's Longest Dave Matthews Concert." I think that's WAAAAYYY more offensive than World's largest Gay Bar.

I'm caught somewhere between outrage and apathy right now. As someone of moderate intelligence I really can't understand how anyone can attempt to justify this ignorance. Would you make a shirt that says "Paul Konerko Mows my Lawn"? Or how about Ryan Theriot getting featured on a shirt that says "Horry Kow"? Would you put Fontenot on a shirt featuring Bruce Lee? Of course not because then you're not able to play the race angle and perpetuate ignorant racial stereotypes. I guess if this is all fun and games then we should wait for the shirts depicting some of our African American players as monkeys?

As far as your claim that this shirt somehow allows us to triumph over racism and share a good hearty laugh - the only thing I'm able to laugh at is your flawed logic. Shirts like these only breed ignorance and simply divides groups even further. For the sake of brevity I won't discuss how ball parks are still very much a family event with impressionable children in attendance. Nor will I discuss how this type of ignorance makes minorities uncomfortable, regardless of how they might react in public. And I won't get into racist attire when mixed with alcohol can't be a good thing. However, I will say that I'm far less likely to attend a sporting event now and I won't be taking my children to any games until this trend of racist sporting attire passes.

Dummy Designed the shirt, Murat help create the shirt, but i came up with the idea of putting Ozzie on the shirt when my partner was at a loss for a concept. The lawnmowing concept is not new, but we did a great job at altering it enough to keep it creative.

As expected, this shirt was created to make money. But for me, it goes beyond that.

1. Ozzie is Venezuelan not Mexican
2. My wife and daughter are Mexican as well as Murat wife Theresa.
3. I know landscapers that make 6 figures and never ever have thought of this career as demeaning neither should you.
4. If You feel this is racism which it can't be since we are all 1 race but you can argue ethnicity discrimination, but again there is no discrimination, then you yourself are a racist. If you identify with any group, you are taking a preference for that group and are segregating yourself from the whole of society.
5. Horry Kow went a long way to break down the sensitive topic of racism. Such a hot topic last year but little to no mention of Horry Kow this year. What happened? Did racism suddenly go away, or have we possibly made progress as a society.

I dream of the day when not 1 more Ozzie Mows Wrigleyfield T-shirt is sold because then and only then could we say that we have come together as a society.

I am Greek and have been the subject or butt of the joke all my life, (pun intended) and have always laughed along.

Yes it plays on the insipidness of the masses and yes it pushes some buttons, but again i offer you... you cannot be put off or offended unless you segregate yourself and unless you subscribe to a group. Groups are not looking or willing to be brought together. That's why people subscribe to them. The group aims to stay strong and in it's nature thrives on exclusivity and any perceived threat is warded off.

I for one would not buy this shirt because i think it is stupid. But people like me are not the target consumer.

You should never, EVER take your children to Wrigley.

Your response is that if someone finds these shirts racially insensitive and offensive it's really because that person is a racist? Pray tell, how did you come to that conclusion? What are your thoughts on some recent cartoons that depicted President Obama as a monkey or showing him blending into a dark background and only having visible teeth and eyes? Apparently those that found it insensitive are racists themselves while those having a good laugh about it are enlightened?

I'd also like to address your points that Ozzie isn't Mexican and that because you're somehow related to Mexicans this is somehow excusable. Um, what? Let's start from the top and see if we can somehow trace your thought process. Ozzie is Venezuelan. A common stereotype in the United States is that everyone of Latin descent is Mexican. Another common stereotype is that all Mexicans work as busboys or landscapers. Let's make a witty shirt that shows Ozzie (a Venezuelan) mowing a lawn (because Mexicans mow lawns). My gut tells me that some people might cry foul but it's okay because I married a Mexican woman and am therefore allowed to speak on behalf of all Latinos.

And by the way, we don't hear about the Horry Kow shirt any more because it's been banned, but if you can I would be thrilled to see your explanation on how this shirt helped break down the sensitive topic of racism.

http://www.suntimes.com/sports/903754,cubshirt041808.article

hold up!! doesn't this shirt also mean he owns's wrigley field??
go sox go!!

Lets look at these shirts for what they really are to the people who make them: more money for their business at anybody's expense. They work hard to find the most offensive racist subject matter because they know it will draw attention - and sell more shirts to other bigots like themselves. They will use this article and comment space to provide nonsensical arguments that are only designed to further promote their plainly racist and offensive product. Quite honestly, I'm surprised that the Sun Times would actually print a story like this that comes across more like a plug for unscrupulous tee shirt companies than news.

One thing is for sure, these people would sell their own children into slavery if the price was right. Using flawed logic to try and hide the embarrassment and pain that is caused by ridiculing people based on the color of their skin and economic status can only be topped by their admission that they themselves are minorities, as if it is some kind of justification for their socially irresponsible behavior. They should make up a new shirt for their children that reads "My Dad is a Racist Idiot!".

Venezuela and Mexico are 2000 miles apart. White people who are angry about this shirt are the racists. You lump us all together like we are idiots. Landscapers make alot of money and if anyone is looking down on cutting lawns it's the same people trying to condemn those that print shirts. Obviously many here that landscaping is not admirable and beneath you in order to want to defend the whole South American continent. Last time i looked Venezuela was not in North America.

Always remember it was you snooty caucasians that brought bigotry upon us.

Buy these shirts. It really upsets Ozzie. He just acts like he liked it because he has been so vocal against cub fans and Wrigley.

Landscapers make a lot of money? You mean like the owner of the company or the scores of minimum wage workers out there mowing lawns? They must get a great benefit package too, paid vacation, 401K right? That has to be the single dumbest justification for racism I've ever heard. No, wait a minute, pointing out the distance between the two Latin American countries that are being made fun of by this shirt, that makes even more sense. If it wasn't an insult to depict Ozzy mowing lawns then no one would have made the shirt to begin with. Someone trying to defend this shirt as not being racist and insulting to Hispanics is like saying that African Americans used to sit on the back of the bus because the seats were more comfy back there. Ignorance beyond borders.

HAHA - That is the funniest shirt I've ever seen. Awesome!

Of COURSE Ozzie didn't pay for it. Rich spoiled privileged people in this country don't pay for anything. They feel some sort of entitlement to have their minions pay for their shi... stuff.

But a previous blogger was right -- Cubs fans are dumb frat boy-sih.

Another blogger said Ozzie is a class act? Yeah, lower class. He's a piece of human excrement and if he didn't know baseball mowing lawns might be a lofty career goal.

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This page contains a single entry by Kyle Koster published on June 18, 2009 9:16 AM.

Carlos Zambrano, Ozzie Guillen appear in Pepsi commercial together was the previous entry in this blog.

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