No but really, what is a Blazer?

Feb. 23, 2023, 8:09 p.m. | By Alexander Liu | 1 year, 3 months ago

Blair’s elusive mascot is full of mystery

A school’s mascot is a symbol of its values and school spirit, often intimidating animals or figures that the school rallies behind. Gaithersburg has their Trojans, Richard Montgomery has their Rockets, Damascus has their Hornets and we have … the Blazers? 

Despite the Blazer’s ubiquity as a school mascot, nobody seems to actually know how it came to be. Google turns up nothing, and none of the current staff are anywhere near old enough to remember, causing the origin story of the Blazer to be a 90 year old mystery. 

For its part, the administration has slapped the Blazer logo on pretty much everything they can –  from agenda books to shirts to every available wall. Walking through Blair, you would be hard-pressed to find a space where the Blazer isn’t visible somewhere. 

But what exactly is a Blazer? The name itself is no help, with the Blazer being neither “a lightweight jacket” nor “one that blazes.” Even ChatGPT seems to have no idea what it really is, continually spitting out brilliant responses like “‘The Blair Blazer’ is likely the mascot for a high school named Blair” (wow, no way) and “It is possible that it could refer to a specific person, product, or entity” (woah, slow down there, genius). 

If I told 100 people to name a red bipedal creature with a long tail and horns, 99 would probably come up with the word devil. And while the Blazer does look like that sometimes,  it just as often appears as a strange cross between a devil and a giant anteater.  Even worse, two other schools in the area, Takoma Park Middle School and Springbrook High School, also have the devil as their mascot – making the Blazer feel like a strange spin-off. 

Additionally, thanks to all the clubs, publications and teams with their own take on the Blazer, the Blazer’s appearance changes more often than a middle-aged man going through a midlife crisis. One moment the Blazer is a jacked red devil with a goatee, the next it's a thin, vaguely mammalian animal with an extended snout and oversized feet. 

With a confusing name and an inconsistent appearance, the Blazer can be quite challenging to explain to other people outside of Blair. When I asked students from all-different high schools outside of Maryland what a ‘Blazer’ was, almost every response ranged from “a piece of clothing” to “the sports jacket.” 

That said, there was another common interpretation. “A Blazer sounds like someone who smokes a lot of weed,” was a popular response from many Fairfax county students. This was a very common response after I explained to them our mascot was in fact not an article of clothing, but a sentient being. Clearly, this was not the interpretation that administration had in mind when picking the mascot all those years ago. 

The Blazer as our school mascot is therefore quite a strange choice. Instead of invoking a sense of power or intimidation as other mascots do, the Blazer is more likely to invoke a sense of confusion. As the old adage goes, if it looks like a devil, walks like a stoner and sounds like a jacket, then it just may be a Blazer.

Last updated: Feb. 23, 2023, 8:10 p.m.

Tags: Blair Blazers

Alexander Liu. Hi, I'm Alex (he/him) and I'll be a staff writer for SCO this year. I'm passionate about public policy and international relations. In my free time, I enjoy drawing and watching terrible rom-coms. More »

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