We’ve talked about the Texas Sharpshooter fallacy before here at SA (and by “we” I mean “I” and by “about” I mean “talked at you”). You remember, the time when award-winning children’s author Jack Gantos and I were cosmically intertwined for one brief day? You remember, right? No?
To hell with ya.
Anyway I had another experience like this today at In-N-Out. And no I don’t have any tips for them. They run a tight paper-hatted, novelty safety-pinned ship over there.
I’m here to tell you about a man who asked for a fork and knife at In-N-Out and what that means about the President of the United States.
First, the guys in the In-N-Out. This is on Sunset Blvd not far from Mann’s Chinese Theatre. Trendy-ish but just as much touristy. A couple of numbers ahead of me was a guy with tattoo sleeves on both arms wearing Saran Wrap tight black jeans, metal belt, biker boots, grey short slicked back hair, the aging rocker thing to a T. He was with another guy with similar style only he kept his hair (male pattern baldness be damned!) from 1985 which flowed out in a wispy mane.
Both men had guitars with them.
I hated both of them in the mild way that some people hate hipsters. Every time I see guys like that I wonder how fucking blown out are you that you’re unaware 25 years have passed? Hair metal has shuffled off its mortal coil. Lose of the leather choker.
All I could think was, “Look at this fucking rocker.”
But you know what? Good for them. Don’t be another brick in the wall, kemosabe.
Anywho, they went up and picked up their orders and flirted with the In-N-Out girl (who was pretty and could have been anywhere from 16 to 32) who asked if they needed anything else?
“Yes, can I get a knife and a fork, sweetheart?”
I did what I always do at these moments: Look around to see if anybody else just witnessed this shit. Nobody did. The attendant didn’t even seemed fazed by it. (I should have asked for a bib and a lobster pick just to see what she’d say. “Yeah, it’s for the fries.”)
This is a character flaw. Even more so than being in a quarter century time warp. These are the sort of people I suspect are aliens wearing human skin suits. Was he going to cut up the burger? The fries? If so, was the knife necessary? Are you unaware of the customs in regards to fast food? Why not ask for a steak knife while you’re at it. The serrated edge will be most efficient in cutting up your ground beef disc. Thank you life form.
If I wasn’t worried about an impromptu Mr. Big cover I would have sat closer to their table and surveilled them.
Two utensil faux pas in one day? (What the hell is the plural of pas?) And just like the last sharpshooter fallacy I fell for, the meaningless coincidence also involves Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me? Holy FUCKING SHIT! Is this coincidence squared? Or does it just mean that I listen Wait, Wait every week and at some point they are going to talk about something in existence which I too will witness in some form thus giving it the illusion of meaning?
You’re right: Holy ass-nugget! This means something.
What it means is that Obama–a man who has legions of people scripting his life every minute of every day up till Nov. 6th–was caught off script because, well, who the hell eats an ice cream cone with a spoon?
I’d have liked to be a fly on the wall when he his handlers saw this go down:
Handler 1: Oh, Jesus. Jesus no! He’s not…he did. [big exhalation, leans against a wall]
Handler 2: What? What is it Margaux? What’s happening? Is he smoking again?
Margaux (side note: Is there any question that she spells her name Margaux and not Margo? I mean besides her being a figment of my imagination? Margaux, right? “It’s pronounced Mar-gaux. Like the French. Yes, Montauk is delightful in June. Mmmmhmmmm.”) (That was a long side note.) (Anyway back to Margaux)
Margaux: He took. There’s a- Goddamn spoon? Like [makes scooping motion]
Handler 2: Spoon? Margaux talk to me. My god woman! What’s going on?
Margaux: [flat, dejected] He’s eating an ice cream cone with a spoon.
Handler 2: Is this the birthplace of the spoon or something? Where the hell are we anyway?
Margaux: Doesn’t matter, he’s been polling in the high 30′s with the spoon demographic. We were going to target forks with an ad barrage next week but after this…
Again, your first thought is how out of touch is this person? Is this Barry’s attempt to out-Mitten Mittens? You can’t tell me this isn’t a Mittens thing to do.
This is totally a Mittens thing to do. B might as well buy a dressage horse, a pile of white short-sleeve button-ups and tell Michelle it’s anal and soaking only from here on out because an ice cream cone with a spoon is a pure-bred Mittens move.
Or you can look at it another way: as a purely unscripted moment where Barack was himself which is, let’s face it: Goober In Chief. He is the sort of guy that would eat an ice cream cone with spoon. Hell, I bet he’d eat a freezie with a spoon.
And that’s one a big difference between Mitt and B. I think Mitt would have scripted it with the spoon. Obama is dorky enough that he probably thought to himself “Better ensure I don’t spill this on my shirt. That’s wouldn’t be very presidential.” [snort, pick chocolate chip out of his braces]
Mitt would have been like “And you say they consume this frozen milk out of a cherry wood vase? Oh, is it oak? It’s not wood? You eat that? Doesn’t look like any waffle I’ve ever been served. Is there, can I get a serviette or something? Somebody get me a picture of one of them eating this thing. And can we be done with the Midwest after this? Can these people even afford the poll tax anyway?”
So yes, it’s a character flaw to eat an ice cream cone with a spoon. Of course it’s also a character flaw to want to be president so…buttons.