I was watching Trump’s rally in Las Vegas this week and it dawned on me why he is winning. There was a very long break between an absolutely bonkers speech by the quite obviously mentally impaired Sherriff Joe Arpaio and Trump’s entrance. Really long. People were pictured milling around between some bleachers while insipid canned pop/rock/oldies music was played. I switched back and forth from some other channels, and once when I checked back Billy Joel’s “Uptown Girl” was being played. That’s when it dawned on me.

The crowd was like the people who wander aimlessly through Walmarts and other large cut-rate joints looking for “bargains,” sedated by terrible, dated music. The great, unwashed American lower middle. The same ones you see huddled over their poisonous food at McDonalds and Kentucky Fried Chicken.

And then I remembered an article I had skimmed recently about Trump’s fast food preference and another about the awful food and feel at his so-called Manhattan hotel jewel, the Trump Tower.

He’s not fakin’, folks. He IS that American lower middle, empowered by billions of dollars. They love him because he won the lottery. He picked the right numbers and didn’t squander his winnings.

Read on for the articles.
From Vanity Fair:

The Mind-Boggling Reason Donald Trump Loves McDonald’s

Now we know who orders the Filet-O-Fish.
BY EMILY JANE FOX

Looked at one way, Donald Trump’s runaway political campaign has been one long, extended stay in silly season. But for all the dippiness and bombastic talk of bans and blood coming out of wherevers–the former reality television star saved his most mind-boggling stance for a town hall debate on CNN Thursday evening.

Trump, a rich kid who grew up to become a billionaire who coated his Manhattan manse in gold, admitted that he is a fan of fast food, and sometimes has it delivered to his private plane.

“I think the food is good. I think all of those places, Burger King, McDonald’s, I can live with it,” he said. “The other night I had Kentucky Fried Chicken. Not the worst thing in the world.”

More shocking than the image of Trump sticking his fingers into a bucket of chicken is Trump’s preferred order from Mickey D’s: the fish fillet, he told Anderson Cooper.

Most surprising off all was Trump’s defense of his fried food habit. According to the famously germaphobic candidate, it is the cleanliness and quality of these chains’ cuisine that he finds most appealing, making Trump perhaps the only human in recorded history to praise fast food for those reasons.

“I’m a very clean person. I like cleanliness. I think you’re better off going there than someplace you have no idea where the food is coming from. It’s a certain standard,” Trump continued, straight-faced. “The one thing about the big franchises: one bad hamburger, you can destroy McDonald’s. One bad hamburger, you take Wendy’s and all these other places and they’re out of business.”

—snip—

EWWWWwwww!!!

I will never forget the stench of bad food, bad grease…on the restaurant’s slippery, slimy floor…and suffering, stupid humanity 20 years or so ago when my then-young son and I walked into the only restaurant available…a run-down McDonalds…near the Javits Convention Center in the (at that time) almost totally undeveloped far west side of midtown Manhatttan. He was having a rapidly growing 10-year old’s food fit, and I knew he wasn’t going to settle down unless I got some food in him, but even he…a ravenous eater at the time…took about three steps into the joint, turned around to me and said “Dad…I’m not this hungry!!!”

The FILTH!!!

And this is what Trump refers to as “It’s a certain standard!!!???”

That it is.

Low like a motherfucker.

And from ny.eater.com:

Diving Head First Into Donald Trump’s Culinary Abyss
by Robert Sietsema, January 21, 2016

When the 68-story Trump Tower opened at 5th Avenue and 56th Street in 1983, the structure was already tainted by scandal. It replaced the Bonwit Teller department store, a limestone Beaux Arts structure distinguished by two semi-nude figures in bas relief dancing with scarves at the top of the façade. Trump had promised the pair to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, but they were jackhammered as soon as demolition began, causing the Times to gripe, “Evidently, New York needs to make salvation of this kind of landmark mandatory and stop expecting that its developers will be good citizens and good sports.”

The demolition was largely accomplished by a crew of over 150 undocumented workers, who came to be known as the “Polish Brigade.” They put in 12-hour shifts without construction helmets, and many camped out at the site for the duration of the months-long operation. In addition, the new building was erected by S & A Concrete, a firm owned by “Fat” Tony Salerno and “Big Paulie” Castellano, head of the Genovese and Gambino crime families, respectively, as reported by CNN.

—snip—

Open from noon until 10 p.m., Trump Bar seats around 40 in three small rooms, including one deep in the interior that affords a discreet exit onto 56th Street. In a video commemorating Trump Tower’s 30th anniversary, The Donald rambles on about his self-branded tavern, perhaps unconsciously echoing Barbra Streisand’s song “People”: “People come, they meet other people, they fall in love, numerous people have met people and gotten married just by meeting at the Trump Bar.” But his ability to become enthusiastic about the alcohol at the bar is severely limited: Trump’s a teetotaler.

The menu features signature cocktails that are high priced even by Midtown standards. Yet who could resist the Billionaire Martini ($20)? Fabricated from Chopin potato vodka and Noilly Prat vermouth, the rim is spanned by a skewer of pimento-stuffed olives and baby plum tomatoes, which dribble grease untidily onto the surface of the cocktail. Much more distinguished is a Bordeaux blend that comes from Trump Winery (Formerly, Kluge Vineyard) in Charlottesville, Virginia. Trump acquired the property through a heartless piece of real estate chicanery in 2011.

—snip—

Open from noon until 10 p.m., Trump Bar seats around 40 in three small rooms, including one deep in the interior that affords a discreet exit onto 56th Street. In a video commemorating Trump Tower’s 30th anniversary, The Donald rambles on about his self-branded tavern, perhaps unconsciously echoing Barbra Streisand’s song “People”: “People come, they meet other people, they fall in love, numerous people have met people and gotten married just by meeting at the Trump Bar.” But his ability to become enthusiastic about the alcohol at the bar is severely limited: Trump’s a teetotaler.

The menu features signature cocktails that are high priced even by Midtown standards. Yet who could resist the Billionaire Martini ($20)? Fabricated from Chopin potato vodka and Noilly Prat vermouth, the rim is spanned by a skewer of pimento-stuffed olives and baby plum tomatoes, which dribble grease untidily onto the surface of the cocktail. Much more distinguished is a Bordeaux blend that comes from Trump Winery (Formerly, Kluge Vineyard) in Charlottesville, Virginia. Trump acquired the property through a heartless piece of real estate chicanery in 2011.

Offering only a small selection of beers and wines, the menu’s focus is on outlandishly named mixed drinks, which include the Snickerdoodle (Fra Angelico and crème de cocoa [sic]), The Boardroom (a cucumber-mint gimlet), and “You’re Fired” (a conventional bloody mary). The last two refer to the Trump reality TV show, The Apprentice, which was filmed upstairs. Trump Bar also boasts a menu of snacks, which do little to affirm the luxury that the place aspires to. There are no silky pates, oysters mignonette, or steak tartares. Instead, the bar snacks, which might have come from a 60s bridge party, include potato chips with sour cream dip, mozzarella sticks, and beef chili.

Instead of those, we went for broke and blew $13 on a “grilled jumbo chili cheese dog.” It took 20 minutes to arrive (it had to be fetched from somewhere in the bowels of the complex), during which time we sat contemplating the awful martini. When it finally landed the frank proved to be of decidedly normal length, split in half and littered with chili, cheese, and chopped raw onions. Not great date food. “This is a very good frank,” observed Solares, “but it doesn’t need all this crap on top, and it’s way too expensive.”

—snip—

At the end of the atrium floor is the Trump Café’s steam table, a 40-foot-long affair that might have been borrowed from a public high school. It’s divided into five sections, each with its own menu: hamburgers and pizzas, soups, do-it-yourself salads, sandwiches, and entrees. One day I tried the bacon cheeseburger ($12.40) and found the patty rubbery and way overcooked, real prison food. A couple of slices of half-melted American lay wanly on top like spent runners, and some terrible fries tasting of burned vegetable oil accumulated on the side.

Later that day I sampled freely from the 10-item entrée menu, which changes daily, though it invariably favors Italian pastas and deep-fried stuff. The fried chicken ($13.50) had a thick breading and consisted of three dry pieces of breast. It wasn’t inedible, though the flavored steak fries that accompanied were. On the same pass I also ordered “beef tacos” ($13.50) which turned out to be a fried tortilla bowl heaped with romaine lettuce, grated yellow cheese, and plain ground beef that was so devoid of flavor, it rendered an insult to Mexicans every bit as profound as Trump’s previous pronouncements. Trump food is bland food.

—snip—

The two of us eventually made our way to the flagship of the underground fleet, the Trump Grill. It consists of three rooms at successively higher levels clad in stained woods, separated from the rest of the basement by brass rails but fully visible to any malcontents lingering outside. Over the bar hangs a rather mournful oil of Donald Trump’s mustachioed father, Fred, and nearby hangs a 19th century genre painting showing a cloaked gentleman in a tri-corn hat looking around the corner cautiously as he conducts a lady clutching what we suppose to be his bastard baby, probably intended to communicate a moral precept. Like most of the cultural markers around the complex, it seems apropos of nothing.

I won’t bore you with all the details of our meal, which was lunch, since that’s the only one served in the Trump Grill. There were perhaps five other diners in a restaurant that seats around 80. The food here was of a higher quality than at the café or bar, but that’s not saying much. The Caesar salad ($12) was perfectly edible, though skimpy on the croutons and nearly devoid of anchovies; a half serving of large lobster raviolis ($14) was far exceeded in volume by its cream sauce, with a good quantity of lobster meat in round pouches far too thick-skinned.

—snip—

It goes on, but you get the idea.

Sietsema…one of my very favorite NYC cultural writers…finishes like this:

After a visit to Trump Tower, it’s hard to see the presidential candidate as anything but a small damaged ego plagued with the infantile obsession of putting his name on everything. A man whose shallow pronouncements are more likely to elicit guffaws than thoughtful reflection. Of the Trump Tower he says, deadpan, “It’s just about the number one tourist attraction in New York.” Visit the facility and look around you at 7 p.m. some evening, and see if you agree.

My own opinion regarding Trump? He’s a “teetotaler” because he is justifiably afraid that if he got even a little drunk his whole facade of normalcy would break down and out would rage an unbridled id that would tear up whatever place in which it found itself like a giant tasmanian devil on crack.

I fear for our safety if this fragile creation called “Donald Trump” actually comes under the great pressures of the presidency while within striking distance of the nuke button.

I really do.

AG

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