Though the National Hockey League announced it was pausing its 2019-2020 season last week amid the escalating coronavirus pandemic, Gritty wants fans to know that he's ready to be their "orange light of hope" even off the ice.
"We have no hockey. But we have each other," the Philadelphia Flyers mascot tweeted Tuesday. "Now is when I would typically embrace you with my fur, but instead I will envelope you with my words (social distancing)."
Gritty said that he is taking health experts and governmental officials' guidance to stay inside so as not to further spread the novel coronavirus "seriously" and that he is making sure he keeps his paws "very clean." In terms of entertainment, he has been watching "Osmosis Jones," an animated fantasy film about a zoo worker who contracts an unknown virus after consuming a contaminated egg.
"I'm lonely, so I'm sure you are too," Gritty added. "We can be lonely together. Maybe being together in loneliness can make us ... not lonely?"
While Gritty himself acknowledges that his post is silly — he states that "laughter is the best medicine" besides medicine in the post — some say that it has brought them comfort as they self-isolate and adapt to a new routine.
"Maybe being together in loneliness will make us not lonely” is the most comforting thing I’ve read all throughout this crisis," one person commented.
"I definitely need to hear that," wrote another.