Wednesday, February 18, 2009

No Manners, Lots of Flatulence

Well, I do believe I've found one of the more asinine, if not the most asinine opening statement from a news article. Over there at Fox News - Fair and Balanced (and missing the point as well), a story about a one Adolf Hitler (the dictator, not the small child in Pennsylvania) begins as such: "Adolf Hitler's uncouth behavior and shocking table manners appalled his wartime dining companions, according to a secret intelligence report discovered while cleaning out a house." Um, wait. What?

Now, by "uncouth behavior" are they referring to the attempted extermination of all who were Jewish? Because I would agree, genocide is rather "uncouth behavior" to say the least. But considering that the title of the article is "Report: Adolf Hitler Had Terrible Table Manners", I'm guessing that's not what they're referring to. But before I continue, can I just ask who gives a fat rat's ass what his table manners were like? This is Adolf Hitler we're talking about right? Right. I think that table manners would be of the least concern to those who are still concerned.

But it's apparently news that according to a once secret intelligence report, an aide "who kept the appointments diary at Wolf's Lair" (which was apparently the headquarters of Hitler's military) had been interrogated and the information that he provided was then interpreted so that a psychological profile of Hitler could be established.

According to said aide, "...the F├╝hrer bit his nails during meals, gorged on cakes and was often lost in his own thoughts, paying little attention to the conversation around him. He also spoke about the rages that kept Hitler's senior officers in a state of constant terror." OK, I pay little attention to conversation around me frequently (as people are morons and it requires quite a bit of effort to try to pay attention to those folks, so I just don't bother anymore. I nod a lot.) and I think most other people pay very little attention to what goes on around them. And it's truly shocking that Hitler's rages frightened people! Imagine! Hitler! A scary dude! Go figure.

The biting the nails during meals, though? Gross. Definitely bad table manners, I concur. The aide also said that "...Hitler would eat only vegetables and stewed fruit and banned smoking in his presence. His meals would be accompanied by one or two glasses of beer." Well, with all of those fruits and vegetables, at least he was regular! And how nice that he didn't smoke! What a guy. But even for breakfast that's all he ate? What about eggs? Did he like eggs? I know they're not a fruit or a vegetable, but they're kind of similar to those categories. And I can't see having vegetables and stewed fruit for breakfast when one is trying to be all dictator-y.

"Hitler eats rapidly, mechanically, for him food is merely an indispensable means of subsistence." Were we under the impression that Hitler lingered during mealtime whilst plotting the extermination of an entire group of people? Have you seen pictures of the guy? He was a freak! Is any of this stuff surprising given what is already known about the man? I don't think it is!

When he spoke it was “in mellow baritone, without that raucous, unpleasant stridency of his public speeches." All right, now someone's just being silly. Did we expect that his mealtime conversation would be similar to that of his speeches? Were we under the impression that he would stand up in his chair, give the ol' Nazi salute and bellow, "Pass the salt!" I never thought that ever would have occurred, thus I didn't give much thought to his speech patterns outside of the public speaking realm.

But according to the The Telegraph over yonder in the UK, not only was Hitler not real big in the manners department, but he also "suffered from flatulence." Now, if "flatulence" in the UK means the same that "flatulence" means here in the US, then I'm guessing it was more of those around him who were doing the suffering.

See, I just don't get stuff like this. If Hitler's table manners had been a source of discontention amongst some...people?....I guess?.....then I suppose I would see the newsworthiness of it all. But I guess I just don't, especially with the limited details that were provided. I guess I can always store it in the back of my head in case I'm ever on Jeopardy! one day and I choose "Things Only I Know" for $1000. Other than that, I'm just going to continue to think of Hitler as the despicable human being that he was and leave it at that.

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