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Phillies free association: An exploration of Slack’s GIF function

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The Good Phight moved their communications to a new medium. What ensued was less communication and more (un)productive silliness.

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at New York Yankees Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

This very morning, The Good Phight’s benevolent blog lord Liz Roscher officially moved official blog communication to trendy productivity platform Slack.com. For my entire time on this blog, we’ve been operating in the dark days of email, where threads get broken up at an arbitrary (and round) 100 replies. The name of our current thread is “Yay for the 2016 season!” but in the past, we’ve been known to carry threads with titles like “A new thread for the second half” well into the following season. I guess what I’m trying to say is that email is nice and all, but it was a little clumsy for fun-loving internet-blogging folks like us.

So, this morning, we received a manifesto from Liz about the virtues of switching over to Slack. I felt ok about this. I have used Slack for other jobs and my wife uses it extensively for hers. I generally knew how it worked, but had never really explored it’s features beyond simple communication.

However, within minutes of our full transition this morning, the TGP crew latched on to the /giphy functionality of the platform. For the uninitiated, this particular command instructs Slack to post a GIF related to the words that follow “/giphy.” Like the somewhat common “mystery beer” special, it sometimes yields what you want and sometimes it doesn’t. Regardless, it always rewards you with what you deserve.

What exactly, then, did we at the Good Phight deserve when we entered various Phillies related terms into /giphy? It’s time for some /giphy baseball business! (Disclaimer: Commentary is offered only when deemed absolutely necessary)

We’ll start with the simple /giphy Phillies:

Former Phillies Fun

/giphy Charlie Manuel

No one ever said Charlie was the youngest, smoothest dude on the block.

/giphy Papelbon

/giphy Mike Schmidt

/giphy Kyle Kendrick

It’s unclear to both me and the other writers on this site what exactly this has to do with Kyle Kendrick, but it’s there.

/giphy Aaron Harang

You thought I wasn’t going to get Harang in here?

/giphy Jimmy Rollins

Let’s all pretend we didn’t see this and move on with our lives. Deal?

/giphy Aaron Rowand

“Yup.” - Sam Hinkie

/giphy Dom Brown

/giphy Brad Lidge

/giphy Midre Cummings

Midre Cummings, if memory serves, led off an played centerfield in the first Phillies game I ever attended at Veterans Stadium. As such, he—and by extension, this GIF—holds a special place in my heart.

/giphy Cole Hamels

NOTE: I have not included Pat Burrell because the diversity and silliness of the returns for that search are worthy of a forthcoming post from Wet Luzinski. Please pressure him into producing this post for our collective benefit.

/giphy J.C. Romero

This is a perfect encapsulation of J.C. Romero’s approach to pitching: Flirt with disaster just long enough to freak everyone the hell out but not long enough to actually cause disaster.

/giphy Ken Giles

Ken Giles was one of the most awkward dudes in last year’s Phillies clubhouse, so this GIF really speaks to me. Personally, I found that quality endearing in a setting full of machismo and self-confidence.

/giphy Jim Thome

Current Phillies

/giphy Larry Bowa

There is no other Larry Bowa GIF worthy of the name.

/giphy Ryan Howard

Ryan Howard is now officially the second most prominent of his name in the American cultural landscape.

/giphy Carlos Ruiz

/giphy Darin Ruf

/giphy Cameron Rupp

These are two of the least Cameron Rupp human beings that Slack could have possibly returned on this query.

/giphy Aaron Nola

Too soon for Slack to make light of his recent struggles and trip to the disabled list? Absolutely. Go away Slack.

Phillies Ephemera

/giphy World Fucking Champions

This certainly isn’t an accurate portrayal of our feelings at the time of the reference utterance, but it may capture the way things sort of went from there for the franchise.

/giphy Phillies suck

The Good Phight

/giphy Liz Roscher

/giphy The Good Phight

I’ve never been prouder to be associated with this fine web blog.

Well, I think that’s enough GIFs to test the power of your internet connection. It’s working fine for me, so if you’re having problems, you should call your internet provider and ask them what gives. But, before we go, I have one (or two) final treat(s) for you.

Guess That Query

Now comes a feature—perhaps the most important feature—of this post: Guess that query. The challenge is to identify in the comments which Phillies-related query returned the following GIFs. As a hint, the first is a former Phillie of the last 10 years while the second is a current member of the organization. The winner will be awarded a rec and verbal praise in the comment thread.

/giphy MYSTERY 1

/giphy MYSTERY 2

Have at it The Good Phighters. Maybe these are easy and the cultural references Slack is making are just lost on me, but quick Google image searches of these people suggests that my befuddlement is justified. May you be less befuddled!