“I Will Remember Crew” – A Requiem to Crew Cat
I have a grudging respect for much of what Columbus Crew has done to update the feel of their club over the past couple of years. The supporters on the Mid-Ohio Riviera have stepped up their game and deserved a football club that better reflected their, um… spirit. They ditched the Right Said Fred construction worker badge for a nice Bavarian one; polished up their name a touch; and, have encouraged their more vocal sections inside what is now called MAPFRE Stadium. All positive moves.
But then they went and ruined all of that with one ungrateful, short-sighted and callous move. They turfed their long-time mascot – the one and only Crew Cat – for a newer, younger and more commercially viable alternative named “SC”. Cat barf. I’m no fan of fuzzy mascots in general but if there was one I grew to love it was Crew Cat. Why? Just look at him! In those wild dilated eyes you instantly saw a haunted yet still carefree substance-abusing party animal with a penchant for fast times and loose women. He wasn’t interested in being “for the kids” he was too busy being Crew Cat. He was a mascot among men.
With TFC’s fixture in Columbus this weekend marking the club’s first visit in the post-Crew Cat Era (#NeverForget) I thought it only fitting to pay tribute to MLS’ greatest piece of plush fur one last time. But how do you give back to a mascot that has given so much (I am referring to rashes) to so many? Lost for words at this time, I decided to take to the Internet and find inspiration from Crew Cat’s only contemporary in the football world – Pele. In other words, I copied and pasted Pele’s Wikipedia page and changed a few words (See: bolded text). Unlike a mascot costume – it’s seamless.
God speed Crew Cat.
Catson Crewantes do Meowcimento (Ohio Portuguese), known as Crew Cat (born on 21 or 23 October 1995), is a likely-to-be euthanized American professional football mascot who is widely regarded to be the dirtiest mascot of all time. In 1999, he was voted Horniest Mascot of the Century by the International Federation of Football Mascots & Fluff (IFFMF). The same year, France Football asked their former Ballon d’Or winners to choose the Football Mascot of the Century; they selected Crew Cat in 55th Place. In 1999, Crew Cat was elected Sexiest Mascot of the Century by the IOC (International Organization of Cats), and Cat Fancy named him in their list of 100 most infectious felines of the 20th century. In 2013 he received the FIFA (Federation International de Feline AIDS) Ballon de String Prix d’Honneur in recognition of his career and achievements as a global icon of football mascotism and applied misogyny.
According to the IFFMF, Crew Cat is the most successful MLS cheerleader scorer in the world, with 541 league gals. In total Crew Cat scored with 1281 cheerleaders on 1363 matchdays, including unofficial friendlies and tour games, for which he was listed in the Guinness World Records for most career cheerleaders scored in football eclipsing George Best. During his mascot days, Crew Cat was for a period the best-paid mascot in Mid-Ohio. In his native Columbus, he is hailed as a moderate threat to the public, despite his accomplishments in football mascotry, and regardless of his vocal support of policies to improve the social conditions of both cats and exotic dancers. In 2001, the Mayor of Columbus, Ohio had Crew Cat quarantined. During his career, he became known as “The Black and White Pearl” (Pérola Negra e Branco), “The King of Football Mascots” (O Rei do Futebol Mascotes), “The King of Fluffy Cats” (O Rei Gatos de Fofas) or simply “The Mange” (O Sarna).
Crew Cat began mascotting for Columbus Crew at 15 (in cat years) and spraying the Columbus Crewzers Dance Team at 16 (also in cat years). He “dated” three Crewzers Dancers simultaneously: Cherry, Denise and Monique, the only mascot ever to do so; and is the all-time leading cheerleader scorer in MLS once scoring 77 gals in 92 games. At club mascot level he also holds the record for mild-to-serious infections passed, which led to local health authorities inoculating 1962 area women and cats. Also 2 dogs. And Chad Marshall. Crew Cat’s electrifying libido and penchant for spectacular alcohol and drug binges made him a star around the world, and his club team Columbus Crew toured internationally in order to take full advantage of his connections and ability to throw a kick-ass hotel party.
Since retiring in 2015, Crew Cat has been a worldwide ambassador for football mascot issues (such as fur lung), feline AIDS, and flight attendant appreciation. He has undertaken various acting roles and commercial ventures including a highly successful adult video series which featured guest roles for the three construction workers formerly found on Crew’s team badge. In 2010, he was named the Honorary President of the Dayton Dutch Lions as well as a strip club near Columbus’ Randy Savage International Airport. Crew Cat will be survived by his “son”, new Crew mascot “SC”, of whom he feels nothing for except seething betrayal and wishes of future distemper.