Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Future Historical Footnote Hugs Obama, Has Busy Week

Scott Van Duzer is that muscular, hunky pizza shop owner who gave President Obama that great big, feet off the ground bear hug the other day. I'm sure you saw it on the news.
The now famous Van Duzer/Obama bear hug

Like everyone who splashes onto the national stage in one of those weird moments, he's having one of those weeks to write home to ma about.

It's been mostly positive for him, since he seems to be a reasonable, well adjusted if exuberant kind of guy. Some of these flashes in the pan get shellacked by the press for being, well, dumb. And for not remembering to step off stage when their 15 minutes of fame are up. Joe the Plumber, anyone?

Not that it's been all great. Van Duzer said he's a Republican but voted for Democrat Obama in 2008 and plans to vote for him again this year. So some of the hard core Republican base took to Yelp to say how awful Van Duzer's Big Apple Pizza joint is. 

Typical troll comment on Yelp: "I cringe at the thought even of eating at this Big Crapple Pizza. Knowing O'Hussain was there totally creeps it out for me."

Clever review. Bet it took that troll all night to come up with that zinger, huh?

Most of the comments talked about how dreadful the food allegedly is, but I bet 99.9 percent of the people who posted negative comments never ate there. They just hate Obama, and now by extensiion, Van Duzer.

I have no clue if the restaurant is any good, because I've never eaten there,  but really. It's a bad restaurant because Van Duzer's politics doesn't match theirs? Moderate Republicans make bad pizza but Tea Party Republicans make delicious pizza?

In any event, there was a counterinsurgency on Yelp by Democrats who say the restaurant is great. Again, that makes no sense. Democrat pizza is better than Republican pizza? How can you tell? But, whatever.

If I based my decisions on which stores and restaurants to visit based on whether I totally agree with their politics, I wouldn't be able to go anywhere. And it would be an awfuyl lot of work to figure out which store matches my politics the best. Who needs that?

Anyway, Van Duzer says both Democrats and Republicans are welcome in his restaurant, as they are any business, really. And he thinks getting so wrapped up in politics is the wrong way to go.

“There’s no middle line anymore, and that’s exactly what’s wrong with our country right now," he told Politico.
One good thing that's come out of this is the attention has made donations to  Van Duzer's charitable foundation go way up. The foundation helps families who are hit by unexpected crises, like a kid's critcal illness.

Look for Van Duzer in a Trivial Pursuit game in about ten years.

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