I’ve swam at the Sequoia pool since I was six. Literally. Summer age groups as a PCA dolphin through now, as I can additionally strut my Sequoia Cherokee pride.
Wait. Hold it.
We aren’t really the Cherokees. Well we are… we have been since 1895, but recently a controversy spurred as to whether or not having an ethnic group as our mascot was a good idea, so we developed the “Sequoia Ravens”. Somehow it just doesn’t have the same ring.
I have been very against the duel mascot dilemma from the start. I always thought that it was kind of lame how, for some sports, we are dubbed the Cherokees and for others, we are the Ravens. I like to compare us to Stanford University. They are referred to as the “Stanford Cardinal” but the Tree is what dances around to the band and battles off against Oski and the California Golden Bears.
Mr. Raven has a similar task. He runs/walks/lumbers onto the football field for rally games and encourages students who dig for gummy bears in lemon meringue pies. Sometimes when we have activities in the quad, he adventures out and shows his dance moves to the latest hip-hop hits.
The Raven makes the campus a little bit more cool, but still it doesn’t seem as intimidating to beat one's arms like wings and yell “Go Ravens” at the top ones lungs as it does to do a warrior cry and pound ones feet in a stampede with the rest of the student body.
I have some plaid purple pajama pants from Rite Aid. Down the side, Cherokees is written in big white letters and a little cartoon raven decorates the top. I’m not really feeling it. I don’t know how to respond when someone says our mascot is a raven, and frankly, I don’t know how to react if they say it’s a Cherokee either.
I’ve given up trying to correct people when they get it wrong. It isn’t worth it to try and explain. I end up using a lot of hand motions and demonstrations, leaving everyone more confused than they were before.
So the students don’t know, the teachers don’t know, and I don’t think anyone knows where the boundary lines lie on the ongoing mascot dilemma. So please, don’t ask any of us.
We’re in the middle of an identity crisis.
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