This Thursday night, the White House will host the most important Single-Serving Beer Drink-Off in the history of America as President Barack Obama imbibes with Harvard University professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Cambridge, Massachusetts police officer James Crowley. At stake: racial transcendence for all America. Or, as David Axelrod says: “The president sees this as an opportunity to get dialogue going on an issue that’s been historically troubling.” Apparently, “historically” now means, “for a rough couple of days.”
Anyway, as you might have guessed from the earth-shattering importance, this whole matter came up at yesterday’s White House Press Briefing, thanks to Wendell Goler of Fox News:
Q: Okay. And another subject, Officer Crowley is drinking Blue Moon, we hear Professor Gates is drinking Red Stripe or Becks — what’s the President drinking?
GIBBS: The President had a Budweiser at the All-Star Game, so — why are you looking at me like that? That’s what he drank.
Q: We’re talking Blue Moon, Red Stripe, Becks —
MR. GIBBS: What’s wrong with Budweiser? Why do you hate Budweiser? (Laughter.)
Q: Well, he could get —
MR. GIBBS: Why do you hate Budweiser, Wendell? (Laughter.) Wendell, how about this — how about you and I, we’ll go pick out the beer, we’ll do the beer run. Uh-oh, hold, please. (Laughter.)
I’m just going to put it out there: Officer Crowley is going to brink a Belgian-style wheat beer with notes of coriander? I did NOT see that coming. Gates, of COURSE, will drink Red Stripe, because JAH SAVE ME FROM THESE BUMBACLOT POLICE! (I’m not sure the White House is allowed to stock a Jamaican beer, so I’m guessing that Obama will be raiding hipster speechwriter Jon Favreau’s secret stash or something.
Of course, Obama’s announced intention to drink Budweiser is designed for maximum inoffensiveness. God only knows what would happen if Obama announced a preference for some ornate Trappist beer infused with marionberries! That said, I’d really like to hear that Obama straight pounded one at this quaff session. None of this sipping nonsense, please.
I anticipate the whole sit-down going off without a hitch, and afterward there’ll be some nice statement of reconciliation. This raises the question: Does beer diplomacy have a future? I’ll admit it, I like the whole notion that a few people can grab some cold ones and make peace with each other. But your mileage is going to vary. The Iranian regime is probably going to be hostile to beer drinking. (Might I recommend Cinnabons?) They drink beer in North Korea, but, if this commercial for North Korean beer that Dan Kennedy found is any guide, there’s still a large cultural gap that needs to be bridged.
Yeah, with the North Koreans, I recommend a six-pack of extreme relaxation beverage, Drank. That’ll slow their roll!