Earlier this week, the YMCA announced that it is rebranding itself as just "the Y." The Village People are understandably pissed, but the decision makes good sense. The acronym YMCA stands for Young Men's Christian Association, after all, but the organization today is outwardly almost as secular as Bally Total Fitness.
The bigger question: Now that "YMCA" is no longer the official way to refer to where you play racquetball -- for an in-depth discussion of the changing meanings of acronyms, we'll let Zach Galifianakis and Jon Hamm sort it out -- what becomes of the four-letter acronym?
A couple of suggestions:
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Yuengling: Moonshine's Chief Adversary
Explanation: Although there are many "kings" of beers, D.G. Yuengling & Son is quietly the second-largest American-owned brewery. Some of the suds are even brewed up the road in Tampa. Now that's a slogan likely to attract some new customers paired with a campaign proclaiming the added benefits of single-serving bottles, freed-up bathtubs, and a crisp, refreshing finish.
YMCA, a MGMT-M.I.A. side project
Explanation: The Village People have lorded over this name for too long, and it's only a matter of time before ironic usage of the acronym seeps into music's public consciousness. If you believe the blogs, Brooklyn-based electro-pop act MGMT and world hip-hop act M.I.A. are both riding waves (not Wavves) of hipster backlash currently. Why not combine efforts on a series of songs so antirhythmic and dissonant that they'd never be found next to "Kids" or "Paper Planes" on a workout mix?
Your Minimum Calorie Allowance, AKA the Roughage "Burger"
Explanation: As eateries continue to plumb the depths of nutritional excess with stomach-churning sandwiches like the Double Down and the Grilled Cheese BurgerMelt, Wendy's decides to take things in the other direction with a sandwich made entirely of celery, iceberg lettuce, and radish shavings. Should you decide to apply the ranch dressing packet included, however...
Young Miami Championship Alliance (local usage), or Asshats (Ohio branch)