Gen. Stanley McChrystal reportedly offered his resignation for that article in Rolling Stone where he trashed Obama and his staff (because politics ends at America's borders unless you're a Republican and you complain to everyone).While this article was scheduled to be posted, Obama accepted McChrystal's resignation.
Paris, as one of his advisers says, is the "most anti-McChrystal city you can imagine." The general hates fancy restaurants, rejecting any place with candles on the tables as too "Gucci." He prefers Bud Light Lime (his favorite beer) to Bordeaux, Talladega Nights (his favorite movie) to Jean-Luc Godard. Besides, the public eye has never been a place where McChrystal felt comfortable: Before President Obama put him in charge of the war in Afghanistan, he spent five years running the Pentagon's most secretive black ops.
Um... Bud Light Lime? Isn't that just Budweiser's response to Smirnoff Ice?
The context is more obvious as the article continues:
"I'd rather have my ass kicked by a roomful of people than go out to this dinner," McChrystal says.
He pauses a beat.
"Unfortunately," he adds, "no one in this room could do it."
With that, he's out the door.
"Who's he going to dinner with?" I ask one of his aides.
"Some French minister," the aide tells me. "It's fucking gay."
I'm always fascinated by how some inanimate objects can be perceived as more masculine or feminine than others. Jean-Luc Godard's films are well-known for their raciness and militance, so I thought they'd be safely in the masculine category for people who care about that sort of thing, but apparently not. I'm sure there are plenty of pubescent boys who prefer Will Ferrell movies, but that's nothing for a man whose testicles have supposedly dropped to brag about.
Calling things too "Gucci" doesn't even make sense, so the less said the better.
But as someone who enjoys the sauce every now and then, I do have to call out this Bud Light Lime business. Bordeaux wines are generally heavy, heavier than what I'm comfortable with. I usually stay away. But I'm just a queer boy who only drinks what he likes instead of trying to project his insecurities onto the bottle, so what would I know. But saying that Bud Light Lime is better than Bordeaux grates on me the same way someone saying that they don't want to eat roasted chicken because it's "too Gucci" and instead want Chuck-E-Cheese pizza would.
Speaking of which, I once went to a bar with Alberto and one of his friends from Quebec and the Quebecker asked what they had from Bordeaux. The waitress laughed at him - this place was just too class for Bordeaux. I've never been back because it's just not cool to laugh at someone for not ordering what the waitress approves of. But the idea that Bordeaux's aren't too Gucci stuck with me.
Not that any of that matters. These are issues of taste, not actual gender markers. Our culture has a weird way of assigning gender to things that either lack it or are more diverse than a simple tag would imply (why are all poodles in cartoons female?). It reminds me a lot of what Laurie Anderson was singing about decades ago:
But, yeah, Obama should accept McChrystal's resignation. The civilian leadership is supposed to be in charge of the military, not the other way around. They usually call societies that operate under the inverse "dictatorships."