Having been at Genome Camp (a.k.a. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories Biology of Genomes meeting) last week, I didn’t have time to blog about the latest movement conservative idiocy of getting all het up about Obama asking for Dijon mustard at a restaurant. It’s clearly another instance of attempting to place Democrats in cultural opposition to ‘real’ Americans, as Jesse Taylor notes:
But perhaps the strangest part of all this is that when Democrats get hit for elitism (Kerry’s cheesesteak, Obama’s mustard), they’re asking for things that the places in question had in stock to sell to customers. I could understand some hearty mockery if Obama had walked up to a Burger King and asked for lasagna; that would just be clueless. But the idea that you have established your elite bonafides by walking up to an otherwise perfectly acceptable place of business and asking for a thing that they sell makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.
It also makes going to dinner with these people a potentially legendary exercise in clueless neuroses, with fifteen minutes spent determining whether or not it’s okay to get a mushroom swiss burger without seeming too liberal or elitist or willing to spend 50 cents extra to eat the food that’s on the menu. Laura Ingraham is probably still boycotting her neighborhood Chinese restaurant until they put fried chicken wings and potato chips on the menu, refusing to bow to the Chi-Coms’ insistence that we eat noodles other than spaghetti and sauces that aren’t tomato-based. Bravery in action? The answer must be yes.
What’s sad is that there are probably many Fox ‘News’ viewers who are now vowing to stop buying Dijon mustard. It reminds me of Taibbi’s experiment where he convinced evangelicals that fortune cookies were Satanic. Once an authority figure or those who claim to speak on behalf of an authority figure-in the case of Dijon mustard, a mythical ‘real’ American-decrees that something is evil, the authoritarian followers march in lockstep.
Mustard bagging, anyone?