Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Homer Hanky History

 Everyone knows the two famous Homer Hankies, the ones that directly contributed to the World Series Championships of 1987 and 1991.

These are the classic Homer Hankies. The font and simple slogans were great. They were perfect for their time and place - they just fit right in there.

The next Homer Hanky came in 1997:

As you can tell, these Homer Hankies really aren't technically Homer Hankies, as I believe the Star Tribune owns the rights to that name. But that didn't stop the Twins marketing machine from calling them Homer Hankies and giving them away to fans during the 10th Anniversary celebration of the '87 championship.

The next "Homer Hanky" came in, you guessed it, 2001.

This atrocity is more like a golf towel than a hanky, but whatever. This was given away at the 10th anniversary celebration of the '91 championship.

Then the winning Twins came back, and started making the playoffs again. The return of the genuine Homer Hanky was a much anticipated event in the Twin Cities.

This Homer Hanky is just okay. It has the classic look of the red baseball, but the block lettering is ugly. And the slogan "PROUD AND LOUD" is being overly loud and proud of the loud, to the point of football fan-esque conceit.

The 2003 Homer Hanky strayed from it's roots noticeably, but it's not so bad. The blue is actually kinda badass. .

The 2004 Homer Hanky is really pretty cool. I'm not sure if they got the dimensions correct of the field at the Dome, but it's an original idea and still incorporates the old school feel, what with the horizontal red lines and everything. The block lettering is still ugly though; almost as ugly as Jason Kubel's at-bat against Mariano Rivera in Yankee stadium that October.

Somehow, the Twins made it back into the playoffs again in 2006. A classy, circular design was incorporated. I dig it.

The Twins and the Star Tribune pulled out all the stops as they commemorated the 20th anniversary of the '87 championship. The bi-colored, fancy logo and return to that classic serif typeface make this Hanky really stand out. It was given away to the first 40,000 fans on Saturday, August 18th 2007.

This is the 2008 Homer Hanky, which was never available to the public because the Twins lost to the White Sox in the AL Central Tie-Breaker game. They simply reused the already printed hankies for the 2009 Homer Hanky. Going green = jinx.

Here's the ugly 2010 Target Field opener souvenir Homer Hanky. They just took the inaugural TF logo, slapped come non-congruent banners above and below it, then added more corporate logos. This barely counts as a Homer Hanky.

The 2010 Homer Hanky is, again, without a year, but is otherwise a nice simple design. This marks the first postseason Hanky printed with two colors.

The 2014 All-Star Game came to Minneapolis and the Twins naturally slapped a logo on some cloth and called it an official Homer Hanky. The horizontal lines up top are nice, otherwise it's very Target giveaway. If you're keeping score at home, we now have eight hankies for playoff years and five for other.

The super obscure Homer Hankies are only myths, really.

Just look at that thing. It boggles the mind. Apparently, it was printed at the beginning of the 1988 season. The slogan is pretty damn funny, and it turned out to be ironically prophetic. The Twins were actually better in '88 than '87, winning 91 games, but they failed to make the playoffs. Fuck you, Oakland.

And there is a rumor that the Twins printed a Homer Hanky at the beginning of the '92 season, but I can't find a picture of that one. If you have one, let me know. I can only imagine what the slogan was.

Further reading: The story of the first Homer Hanky.

note: this post appeared in original form on September 4th, 2007. 


bizmarkie507 said...

that bothers me that they didnt put 2010 on it. Otherwise this would've been the best homer hanky design of all time.

is anyone else really excited about the twins' chances this year as opposed to ever? I was a kid in 91 so that doesnt count to me.

bizmarkie507 said...

HAAS! I think i just figured out how to remix the We're gonna Win Twins song and make it not suck lets record it this weekend and send it to the team and see if they'll play it ever. GB Leightons got to go I'm sorry.

HandsOnNight said...

Do you think the white homer hanky will look as cool as it did against the semi-white dome roof? Was this ever considered in moving to an open-air ballpark?

haasertime said...

Bizmarkie -

The Twins chose to start printing the homer hanky about 3 weeks ago, to "ensure they'd be ready for the playoffs." Which is a bunch of shit - they wanted them to be ready before the playoffs so they could make more $$$$$. And the trade-off? The Twins and White Sox were still battling it out, so there was no guarantee the they'd make the playoffs, so the twins hedged their bets by not printing 2010 on them, so they could use em next year or the year after or the year after. Hey, it worked for the 2008 homer hanky.


I've never thought of that, but I think you're onto something. The Homer Hanky looked cool because the Metrodome seating created an absolute unbroken sea of people. The hankies were also the same color as the roof. It was visually striking, to be sure.

Target Field's seating is more hodge-podge and the sea of hankies won't be as epic.

But I don't mind watching outdoor playoff baseball at Target Field.

Jason said...

Haas, in an article I ran across it says that the hankys were made in 87,91,2002-2004, and 06. The article was run in 07. Here is the link-,comeback.2.1234202.html

haasertime said...

Thanks Jason.

The article is only noting the Homer Hankies that actually matter, which were printed for each playoff appearance since 1987:

1987 - WS champs
1991 - WS champs
2002 - Lost to Angels ALCS
2003 - stupid yankees
2004 - stupid yankees
2006 - stupid Frank Thomas
2009 - stupid yankees
2010 - ?????

The less notable, as you can see in the above post were -

1988 beginning of the season
1992 beginning of the season
1997 10th anny of '87 title
2001 10th anny of '91 title
2007 20th anny of '97 title
2010 Target Field opener

Anonymous said...

Hey haasertime, it appears as though someone had the same idea as you.

haasertime said...

Yeah yeah, the twins blogosphere is getting redundant. Fucking North Dakota does a Hanky post the day after mine, and fucking Twinkie Town does a Craig Finn lyrics post the day after mine.

I'll just have to get more creative and abstract, stop focusing on aspects of Twins fandom that people actually want to read.

Anonymous said...

Correct, you need more BronxBoi2.