When asked in an interview on “Meet the Press” if he could name one thing that President Biden has done that he supports, Georgia Senate candidate Herschel Walker uttered the following response…
“He eat a lot of ice cream.”
Walker’s bid for the Senate, which includes the endorsement of former President Trump, has been highly controversial for many reasons that you’ve likely heard about already.
I am going to leave those issues for another discussion, because today I want to point out the relationship President Biden has with ice cream — a relationship I’ve had first-hand knowledge of since before he was even vice president.
In fact, the Walker comment got me reminiscing about one of the most interesting airplane journeys I’ve ever been on, courtesy of the then-Senator from Delaware.
So today, I bring you my recollections from that episode, which have appeared before in this column and that were originally written in August 2008. And given the recent Walker comment, I think these thoughts are once again all too timely.
We All Scream for Ice Cream: A Joe Biden Tale
You can tell a lot about a man by the way he eats.
Some men like to sit down to a meal, take their time and savor each and every morsel of food and drink. People like this tend to be thoughtful, meticulous, confident and in many cases, hedonistic. How do I know this? Well, I’ve been known to spend more time than most getting through a multi-course, wine-paired meal.
Still, other men like to dig right into their prize, attacking the meal with fervor and a literal hunger for life that reveals their carpe-diem approach to the world. This type of person tends to be decisive, purposeful, driven and a born leader. My favorite example of this type of eater is my good friend and fellow investment guru Doug Fabian.
But what do you say about a man who eats his meal in reverse order?
That thought has plagued me ever since I sat next to Sen. Joe Biden on a flight from Washington, D.C. to my hometown of Los Angeles, California. Sen. Biden was on his way to L.A. for an appearance on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher,” while I was returning home from my annual pilgrimage to the nation’s capital for a meeting with friends, publishers and people from some of my favorite think tanks.
After exchanging pleasantries with the senior senator from Delaware, Biden wasted no time in digging right into his criticisms of the war in Iraq, and what he perceived to be the folly of the Bush administration. I expected nothing less from the senator, as he’s known for his outspoken critiques and his shoot-from-the-hip commentary.
What I didn’t expect was a lesson in how to eat a meal backwards.
Now, since I had the benefit of first-class seating accommodations during this journey, the flight attendants were very conscientious when it came to serving what was a surprisingly tasty meal. The first course was a salad with Italian dressing, which was followed by a main course of a plump, well-seasoned chicken breast and a side of rice. The best part of the meal for me was the dessert, which was a generous scoop of gourmet chocolate ice cream.
I ate my meal with my usual casualness, and in the aforementioned order. Sen. Biden, however, took a different path. Biden accepted the salad, but he put it aside and saved it for later. When the main course came, he politely rejected it. But when the ice cream came, Biden’s fervent personality really came out. He emphatically asked for a serving, although he had not yet eaten any food.
Biden ate his ice cream while we discussed Kevin Phillips’ book “American Theocracy,” the then-latest critique of the Bush administration’s religious overtones. After eating the ice cream, Biden pulled out a hefty ham sandwich from his briefcase and consumed it in a deliberate and determined fashion. Once the sandwich disappeared, the senator turned to the only remaining bit of food left on his tray table, the salad.
As I watched this reverse-order meal consumption, a thought occurred to me: Is this why the federal government is so screwed up? Is Sen. Biden’s backwards approach to a meal indicative of what’s wrong with Washington? Does this backwards eating pattern explain why the government does everything less efficiently and less effectively than the private sector?
Given my theories on discerning knowledge of a person based on how they eat, what was I to make of Sen. Biden’s meal habits? The only logical conclusion is that Biden looks at the world — shall we say — differently from the rest of us. And while there is nothing wrong with a little different perspective on things, I don’t think I want someone a heartbeat away from the presidency who eats his ice cream first.
The next thing you know is that person will advocate raising taxes to stimulate the economy, negotiate with our ideological enemies as a means of portraying strength and railing against judges who think interpreting the Constitution is the only proper function of the courts.
Wait a second… that’s what Biden wants?
I knew there was a reason why he ate the ice cream first.
Wednesdays mean wisdom, and that’s especially true at my podcast and lifestyle website, Way of the Renaissance Man.
This week’s wisdom comes to us courtesy of American statesman, diplomat, Founding Father and the fourth President of the United States, James Madison.
The insightful Madison warned us that if tyranny and oppression ever come to America, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy.
For the complete dose of Madison’s brilliance, check out the newly published Wednesday Wisdom featured right now at Way of the Renaissance Man.
The Ingenuity of Fools
“A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.”
— Douglas Adams
The brilliant author, most well-known for his irreverent, insightful and highly recommended humor-laced science fiction works, “The Complete Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy,” reminds us that foolishness is rampant throughout the galaxy. So, when you’re making plans, tailor those plans to the thoroughbreds, not the donkeys.
Wisdom about money, investing and life can be found anywhere. If you have a good quote that you’d like me to share with your fellow readers, send it to me, along with any comments, questions and suggestions you have about my newsletters, seminars or anything else. Click here to ask Jim.