Hillary walked into a Chipotle and bought some lunch. Cue the snark.
Oh man. It's gonna be a long 19 months. Hillary has her faults, as I've noted often over the years, but come on, the woman is entitled to have lunch somewhere without being Twitterbombed and mediaparsed and Foxjeered. Put simpy, the insta-reaction to her Monday meal was a metaphor for our terminally cynical culture. It said way more about us than anything about her.
Rest assured that if Hillary had stayed out of sight and eaten in her van, or if she had flown to Iowa and eaten on the way in a curtained-off seat, the snarkosphere would've dinged her for having a queenly entitled 'tude. Instead, here's a representative sampling of what we got on Twitter:
Hillary ordered a chicken bowl with guacamole, a chicken salad, and fruit juice. Politicians, they're just like us!
It really is an adventure any time the gods descend from Olympus & order beans and rice.
Is Hillary Clinton wearing sunglasses inside Chipotle because she is a diva or because she is that old?
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Maybe Chipotle Grill is to show how poor Hillary is!
Chipotle workers just got more information out of Hillary than the entire media has in the last 6 years.
Does any1 truly believe ANYTHING regarding the Clinton's isn't staged?
But it wasn't just the trolls. The New York Post opined that Hillary went to Chipotle because she's "trying to appeal to working-class voters." That wasn't very insightful. Chipotle draws all kinds of people; it's actually the "unequivocal favorite among Millennials," according to Morgan Stanley. I know this only because the CNN Money website did an analysis of Hillary's lunch.
Meanwhile, by my count, there were three stories on the website of The New York Times. The august publication wants to demonstrate these days, at least online, that it can swing with the trivia du jour - but, at the same time, it still wants to flash its reportorial chops. So what we got yesterday was a wink-wink deep-think that posed this question: "Is Mrs. Clinton's order like the normal Chipotle meals of everyday Americans, or is it polarizing?"
For instance, "Did she include cheese and sour cream?" A Times writer endeavored to investigate the likely calorie count:
"For this exercise, let’s assume she ordered both rice and beans, as most people do, and included one salsa - let’s say the fresh tomato salsa, the most popular. Then we’ll assume she ordered either sour cream or cheese, but not both. Shredded cheese is the mild favorite among the masses, but more important, it’s also my preference, and if Mrs. Clinton is going to get my vote, she’s going to have to prove that she’s just like me. (Nutritionally, the difference between them won’t affect the math too much.) Also, lettuce. Almost everyone orders lettuce! I have proof. And, of course, the side of guacamole, which is not free."
The Times guy goofed on himself (he asks readers, "Are you sure you need to be reading this?"), but nevertheless he soldiers on (because he wants it both ways). He ultimately concluded, after consulting Chipotle's nutritional chart, that Hillary's meal was around 840 calories: "Put another way, the order is kind of normal....You may now resume your lives." (Which everyone presumably did, though one troll fired a mindless parting shot: "Congratulations - you have done more research on Hillary's Chipotle lunch than all the Mainstream Media did combined on Benghazi.")
But no lunch-parsing would be complete without input from the fair-and-balanced gals at Fox News. Cue the "Outnumbered" show for a spirited roundelay of sneers n' jeers.
Host Andrea Tantaros said: "In keeping the Everywoman image, she stopped at a Chipol-tee for a burrito bowl, at Chipol-tee outside Toledo. But apparently no one recognized her....The incognito burrito - someone said on Twitter that she looked hungover. With the glasses and the big shades on. Was this the best way to connect - with a chicken burrito bowl?"
(Someone said on Twitter...Fox News' definition of a reliable source.)
Anyway, seatmate Kennedy Krieger replied: "You know, she’s like, 'Listen, I want some food of the people, but I don’t want it to be icky. I don’t want it to be too ethnic. Is there some middle ground we can find? Like, yeah, let’s go to Chipotle, gotta eat off this hangover.' Yeah, I think what that says is the first lady is quite ordinary-looking in person."
There it is, the world of dumb we live in. One online commenter got it right yesterday:
"And so the long campaign-coverage slog begins."