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Tuesday, October 3, 2000 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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M's try to get their SoDo Mojo working

SoDo Mojo. What is it? Who's got it? Does it hurt? How do you get rid of it?

This much, we know: It's the 2000 Mariners' official slogan.

Beyond that, it's a little tougher to define. For one thing, not everyone agrees on the meaning of SoDo. Depending on who you ask, SoDo is an abbreviation for ...

A) South of downtown;

B) South of the Kingdome;

C) Shootouts downtown.

Despite unconfirmed reports that Sparky McNaulty was gunned down recently near Safeco Field by a shooter screaming, "Wishing you a whole lotta SoDo Mojo," the last answer is incorrect.

According to the Mariner promotions department, SoDo, at first, meant south of the dome. Technically speaking, as most of you are probably aware, there is no dome any more, so it's been changed to south of downtown. Of course, that's the easy part.

Mojo? A little history:

Jim Morrison, after hearing the Muddy Waters version of "I Got My Mojo Working," is said to have rearranged the letters in his name to form "Mr. Mojo Risin'," a feat that, given his drug-addled condition, probably took The Lizard King several days to perform.

But the word mojo was around long before Jim Morrison, or Muddy Waters, or even blues legend Robert Johnson, who sang of a woman's mojo in the '30s.

Mojo is a charm or amulet thought to have magic powers, or power and luck of a supernatural origin. The word is likely derived from the West African word "mojuba," meaning a prayer of praise and homage.

It does not, despite the efforts of overrated dead rock stars and Austin Powers movies to convince us otherwise, have anything to do with, uh, well, you know.

So, to review: SoDo, south of downtown. Mojo, some really powerful good luck. SoDo Mojo, magic at Safeco Field. Or something like that.

Copyright (c) 2000 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.

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