Archive - Aug 11, 2011

Rockin' With Cru

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Memo to Cru: YOU ARE STILL DUMB, AND POSSIBLY EVEN DUMBER NOW.

Cru! Cruuuuuuuuuu! Cru! Nope, still not feeling it.

What is Cru? Don't ask Google, you'll have a hell of a time finding out. It's not a micro-chain of wine bars in Texas and Denver. Nor is it a LA restaurant. It's not a dick-joke spouting dwarf in a very, very shitty World of Warcraft webcomic, a hard drive enclosure, a mining company, a closed wine bar in NYC, an album by a Brazilian singer, a cafe in Charleston, the Climate Research Unit in England, a wine company, or the stock code for Crude Carriers,

Or rather, it is all those things already, which is why it's hilarious that it's ALSO what the Campus Crusade for Christ changed its name to after determining that the word "Campus" turned people off. And the word "Crusade" turned people off too. And apparently there was a problem with the "Christ" thing, too.

Now, maybe it's because the rebranding isn't complete yet, and is officially scheduled for sometime next year even though they announced the name a month ago and have a stylin' new logo full of slender sans-serif fontistry and the best implied cross that graphic Adobe Illustrator's line tool could create. But "Cru" already has an extensive, mostly winey Web presence. You'd think they'd have checked that before making their final decision.

But as funny as all the pre-existing Cru-dite on the Internet is, it's the actual rebranding that cracks me up the most. They're clearly trying to do for collegiate conversion what KFC did to southern states, deep-fat cooking techniques, and poultry. And they couldn't go with CCC, because (a) it sounds like KKK, and (b) the Council of Conservative Citizens is already the CCC. And the KKK in all but name. But I'm sure that was just a koincidence.

So Cru it is. One umlaut and an E away from devil music. One acute accent away from pretentious alcoholism. So why did they settle on that again? Well, what they're telling the media is that bombing the Arabs for a decade and setting fire to mosques in America has given the word "crusade" a bad name. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"In today's culture it carries more weight in terms of its historic meaning." - Vice President Steve Sellers, who also has given his name to America's #1 chain of Steve retailers.

I hate to tell Steve this, but the historical meaning of "crusade" doesn't have as much daylight from the modern version as he thinks. It's still about converting the unbelievers, whether it's at sword-point, or in front of TV cameras and stadium audiences. The whole point of the Campus Crusade for Christ is to convert unbelievers in college. I'm sorry your already unpleasant mission statement has gotten a lot more bomb-y lately, but a name-change doesn't make your mission any more palatable.

Especially when you admit you're taking the "Christ" out of your name in order to trick unsuspecting students into talking about Jesus after they've been fooled by the logo into thinking it was about vitamin water, pre-paid mobile plans, or feminine hygiene products.

"Cru enables us to have discussions about Christ with people who might initially be turned off by a more overtly Christian name. We believe that our interaction and our communication with the world will be what ultimately honors and glorifies Christ." - from Cru's new FAQ.

Shit. Christians have discovered the art of the ninja. Better hope they keep it from the Mormons.* I love the word "ultimately" there. It's not gonna glorify and honor Christ at the beginning, because that's a downer at frat parties. Eventually, once they get around to mentioning the Lord and Saviour, then they'll namedrop JC and glorify the shit out of him. Just not, you know. Right off the bat.

It is a tacit admission that the youth of today don't want what they're selling, so they have to guerrilla market. 2012, stealth name change and logo. 2013 will be all nutshot and Rebecca Black videos that end with five seconds of PRAISE JESUS. And 2014, they'll rename themselves again, probably to "Blackwater", again without Googling it.

That's the public face of the name change. The private face? Non-stop damage control. You know how certain incredibly stupid motherfuckers got really, really red-faced and angry when some stores stopped saying "Merry Christmas"? Well, the Campus Crusade for Christ no longer has Christ in its name. Yeah. Do THAT math.

"It is true that we care more about effectively proclaiming the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ than we do about having the word 'Christ' in our name. The only name that matters is Jesus and what matters most is connecting people to the name that gives life. For those who may be concerned we have lost our moorings, please rest assured that we are the same organization that has shared the gospel billions of times." - The Campus Crusade website.

I'm pretty sure that means: "You want to make something of it, bitches? Take your shot. How many times have you shared the gospel? Thousands? Millions? We're not just holier than thou, we're THREE ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE holier than thou. That's a math thing. Yeah, I had to look it up on Google, too. You know what else I just looked up on Google? Our new awesome name. Yeah... actually, can we get back to you sometime in 2012? I've gotta make some calls."

Change your name all you want, but all it's gonna do is add about a day and a half to how long it takes your members' roommates to hate them.

*KICKING IT OLD SCHOOL.