Recently, Gothamist came up with sketches for 12 possible subway mascots that could be used to improve relations between the MTA and its users. During this project, we wondered: had there ever been anything resembling a real mascot roaming our transit system? Of course, there was Etti-Cat, a subway etiquette mascot who appeared briefly in the form of train ads in 1962, but Etti-Cat was never fully adopted by the organization and promptly disappeared (some of the ads live on at the Transit Museum). There’s Metro Man, who has been on staff at Metro-North since 1983, helping to educate school children about railroad safety. Metro Man was originally a remote-control robot inspired by R2-D2. Although you’d be hard-pressed to find any adults who have ever heard of him, Metro Man still exists today, though he now looks a little more like RoboCop. By far the most fascinating, confusing, inspirational, and mysterious would-be mascot—and the closest we’ve come to having a true representative to our subways—briefly came into being 27 years ago. It seems fitting that with the launch of the new OMNY system, whose monochrome “just tap and go” campaign has been p...