Extra Helping of Squid 11.26.12
Guy Fieri: Douche or Genius?
Monday, November 26, 2012
Guy Fieri: Douche or Genius?
Squid doesn't know much. Manners, electronics and hygiene rank among Squid’s many areas of ignorance.
But Squid knows how to have a good time.
Which makes Squid admire Guy Fieri. Dude may not be able to cook or lay off the peroxide, but he knows how to enjoy himself.
At Pebble Beach Food and Wine last spring, for instance, he didn't let the tricky concepts of education or ability gunk up his cooking demos, which were the most raucous and entertaining of the weekend. At last year's event he was the only "chef" brave enough to make that ever-elusive master dish, stir fry, accessible to the masses. He warned the crowd that they were free not to laugh at his silly humor, though that would mean his jokes "would only get worse," and proceeded to make several cocktails, infer there might be tastes coming for everyone else, then drink them while the $60-or-so-a-head audience tasted nothing. For dessert at the after-party, he courageously took on former Weekly intern Zeek Kim in a dance off. That rules.
In Hollister this Thanksgiving, Fieri was looking out for number one's good times again, or at least Gawker reported as much.
Asking "Was Guy Fieri the Biggest Douche in the Woods this Thanksgiving?," they cited a tipster, who alleged the following:
Techno music booming through huge speakers, camp fires burning, small motorcycles throwing up dust and exhaust all contributed to an apocalyptic scene. Unnamed officials approached a group of 10 to 15 RVs circled around a group of 100+ partiers. After a tense period of initial stare-down between John law and the party people (a macho ritual called "mad dogging") the music was turned down. Ring leader of this merry band of dickheads? Guy Fieri!
The author of the post, Myles Tanzer, took the opportunity to announce Fieri is "Mountain Dew in human form." He explained that "contrary to popular belief [Fieri’s] not a member of Smash Mouth." He reported the star of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives is trying to rehab his image after his Times Square Guy's American Kitchen & Bar was chewed up and vomited out by the New York Times. (The best line: “And when we hear the words Donkey Sauce, which part of the donkey are we supposed to think about?”)
Squid doesn't know about that, but Squid does know Tanzer and the Times' Pete Wells and many of the people who weighed in on Gawker question—"Isn't Guy Fieri the biggest douche in the woods every day of the year?" said one—miss the point completely. (Tanzer also missed the mark, later admitting the tipster was off.)
Fieri isn't a douche because he is making a mint serving subpar food to touristy knuckleheads in Times Square—apparently Wells was expecting the work of fellow PBFW regular, Thomas Keller—or acting however the hell he feels like in front of audiences. No, for that he’s a millionaire.
The octothorp guy who posted the comment “If you can't stand the heat, get out of Flavortown” is a lot closer to getting it than they are. (Same for natdog, who wondered, "Guy Fieri listens to techno? I always thought of him as more of a Limp Bizkit kind of guy.”)
To Squid, Fieri is a douche because he's started to care what people think, appearing on The Today Show to suggest the critic Wells had another agenda. Guy’s place isn’t for Wells, and is probably doing even better with all the attention.
Squid thinks not caring what people think has made Fieri what he is—so swerving course now and dedicating vital energy to whether people give a shit is a waste of rocket fuel that could be better spent elsewhere. Like having a good time.