The Sad, Stately Photo Of Nixon's Resignation Lunch
July 18, 2015 9:33 PM   Subscribe

 
What a weirdly poignant piece of history. It feels like something out of Jon Bois's "Golf Information."
posted by DoctorFedora at 9:37 PM on July 18, 2015 [6 favorites]


I'm picturing Trump's resignation meal as prepared by Guy Fieri.
posted by machaus at 9:42 PM on July 18, 2015 [68 favorites]


Hmm, looks good. I might go for some tea with milk instead of milk though.
posted by Drinky Die at 9:43 PM on July 18, 2015 [1 favorite]


That is so uniquely, miserably '70s.

I imagine the man wasn't hungry. You know that guilty, anxious lack of appetite.
posted by Countess Elena at 9:58 PM on July 18, 2015 [46 favorites]


The morning after my dad died, there was a story about Richard Nixon in the paper. I don't remember what about.

"Well, that's hardly fair," I thought. My dad was a good man, and Richard Nixon stood for everything my father hated. My father hated Nixon. My father deserved to live, not Richard Nixon.

In Nixon's later years, he got in the habit of eating canned chili with a glass of grapefruit juice to cut the flavor of the chili. On reading that, I thought to myself, "Whatever."

And yet, here I am, telling you that in his later years, Richard Nixon got in the habit of eating canned chili with a glass of grapefruit juice to cut the flavor of the chili.
posted by ernielundquist at 9:59 PM on July 18, 2015 [113 favorites]


DoctorFedora - you're not alone. Jon just retweeted someone who sent it to him.
posted by wotsac at 10:00 PM on July 18, 2015


I'd eat it.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 10:01 PM on July 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'm pretty sure this was his standard breakfast.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 10:02 PM on July 18, 2015


I'm of an age where my recollections of the Nixon administration revolve around dinner table conversations. Meals spent with a little television in the corner, and my mother -- somewhat to the left of Mao -- railing against the war in Vietnam and something about farm workers and this Chavez guy. I was nine and didn't know much.

It all seems a little quaint. A few minutes of missing tape and bombing some country most of us couldn't find on a map? That's all you got? We're doing that on a daily basis these days.

That sad little meal pretty much wraps up the vacuous seventies and, at the same time, makes me nostalgic.
posted by cedar at 10:09 PM on July 18, 2015 [20 favorites]


I imagine the man wasn't hungry. You know that guilty, anxious lack of appetite.

Also: Quaker.
posted by rhizome at 10:14 PM on July 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


What does Quaker have to do with it? The simplicity? Never really looked into Quaker dietary guidelines.
posted by Drinky Die at 10:18 PM on July 18, 2015


You could order stuff like that in restaurants back then. Fruit plate. But it was usually canned peaches or fruit cocktail around the cottage cheese.
posted by Mr. Yuck at 10:23 PM on July 18, 2015 [8 favorites]


It all seems a little quaint. A few minutes of missing tape and bombing some country most of us couldn't find on a map? That's all you got? We're doing that on a daily basis these days.

man, I wanna be with you, but even today I think it's worthwhile not to minimize Nixon's crimes.

I didn't really get the bombing in Cambodia, why it was so uniquely terrible, until I read a biography of Pol Pot that noted (in its discussion of the events that set the stage for the Khmer Rouge's rise to power) that the size of the "drop box" of American bombers — the area that they would hit when they dropped their bombs — was a kilometer and a half long and a kilometer wide. Why does this detail matter? It matters because the areas they were dropping bombs in were sufficiently settled that it was actually impossible to position a box a kilometer and a half by a kilometer anywhere in those areas without hitting civilian settlements. And the sheer quantity of bombs dropped in each of the attacks ensured that more or less everyone in those boxes either died or (if they were lucky) just lost everything they had.

Deliberately killing civilians on a mass scale in a country that we weren't even at war with is some nasty shit, even when compared to the other nasty shit this country has done and is doing.
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 10:30 PM on July 18, 2015 [111 favorites]


One of the rare instances where an elected official was held accountable, but Nixon's resignation was not a sign of a rejuvenated democracy where laws and ethics would be vigorously enforced. It was just a blip on the radar, nothing more than a ripple in the pond. We got Carter for four years, and then everything Nixon represented came back in full, and all five Presidents since then have had dirty hands, and now we are looking at the very real possibility of Bush #3 vs Clinton #2. Tricky Dick is laughing in his grave.
posted by Beholder at 10:46 PM on July 18, 2015 [11 favorites]


I blame Jerry Ford. a lot.
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 10:51 PM on July 18, 2015 [7 favorites]


YCTaB, your right and I didn't mean to minimize the human cost of Nixon's foreign policy. I cannot begin to imagine the impact of even a single fully loaded B-52 and there were quite a few more than one.

It has always amazed me that a second rate burglary brought Nixon and his Keystone Kops troupe of goons down, while a massive illegal bombing campaign killing thousands of civilians wasn't that big a deal. We get a few burglars and the policy makers get to move on to future Bush appointments and lucrative speaking gigs. Why Henry Kissinger isn't rotting in prison I'll never understand.
posted by cedar at 10:51 PM on July 18, 2015 [23 favorites]


I blame Jerry Ford. a lot.

He was right that nachos and beer while watching football is a good meal though.
posted by Drinky Die at 10:53 PM on July 18, 2015 [10 favorites]


It all seems a little quaint. A few minutes of missing tape and bombing some country most of us couldn't find on a map? That's all you got? We're doing that on a daily basis these days.

Of course, we later found out that he also sabotaged the Vietnam peace talks.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 10:54 PM on July 18, 2015 [25 favorites]


You could order stuff like that in restaurants back then. Fruit plate. But it was usually canned peaches or fruit cocktail around the cottage cheese.

Yup. If you read Harry Truman’s Excellent Adventure, he drove half way across the country with Bess and lived off of fruit cocktail and cottage cheese as their go-to diner chow. And he hated Nixon.
posted by peeedro at 10:55 PM on July 18, 2015 [6 favorites]


Amongst the other crimes noted already, the Nixon administration introduced the Clean Air Act, created the EPA, introduced wage and price controls, enforced integration by busing, and found ways to finance LBJ's Great Society. He ultimately ended America's massive military involvement in LBJ's war and engaged with China. And also Laos, Camdodia, and Watergate. So one can indeed wonder what guilt was on the man's conscience when he sat before that classic dietary-minded 1970s breakfast.
posted by three blind mice at 11:07 PM on July 18, 2015 [22 favorites]


Ugh, cottage cheese? No wonder he was the worst president in American history.
posted by Itaxpica at 11:17 PM on July 18, 2015 [4 favorites]


But ... I like cottage cheese and pineapple.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 11:19 PM on July 18, 2015 [14 favorites]


his standard breakfast

No! This was lunch! Later it became a White People joke -- favorite foods: cottage cheese, mashed potatoes -- but with Nixon it was real: white food. Everything white. With a glass of milk.
When Michelle Obama was doing that vegetable color routine -- yellow or red or purple or whatever, but one of each. I thought, Yeah! Colored food!
posted by CCBC at 11:20 PM on July 18, 2015 [4 favorites]


But ... I like cottage cheese and pineapple.

Where were you the night of June 17, 1972?
posted by Drinky Die at 11:27 PM on July 18, 2015 [14 favorites]


If things had been a little more precise, if the silverware were equidistant from the tray, if the tray were in the center of the table, you could have told me this was a Wes Anderson still and I would have believed you.
posted by Spatch at 11:36 PM on July 18, 2015 [49 favorites]


You could order stuff like that in restaurants back then. Fruit plate. But it was usually canned peaches or fruit cocktail around the cottage cheese.
posted by Mr. Yuck at 11:23 PM on July 18


Eponysterical.
posted by mazola at 11:37 PM on July 18, 2015 [12 favorites]


Three blind mice, I was waiting for this and almost did it myself. It is tempting to point out his accomplishments. Nobody gets to be President without some sort of sense -- well, there is Grant and Buchanan -- and Nixon's support of the ERA and affirmative action has always stood out to me. He was also ahead of the curve on health care and instrumental in creating Medicaid.

None of this mitigates the fact that he secretly bombed a country, killing several tens of thousands of civilians, and lied about it. Or, that the President of the Freakin' United States, encouraged people to run around breaking into offices to further his political aspirations. We'll just skip right by his usurpation of the FBI, his domestic surveillance and the utter and total disregard for Constitutionally guaranteed rights that he displayed in his persecution of dissent.

I gotta add this, too: it really wasn't LBJ's war. It was a Kennedy thing that LBJ inherited and escalated. Nixon was elected on a promise to end the war. I guess he did. Eventually and badly. Kennedy wanted to "win hearts and minds", Nixon wanted "peace with honor" and Johnson seems to have just wanted to kill Asian people.
posted by cedar at 11:40 PM on July 18, 2015 [19 favorites]


You could order stuff like that in restaurants back then. head on down to Tebo's in Gladstone, Oregon and you still can
posted by Dr. Twist at 11:41 PM on July 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


Was it a thing then, and is it still a thing anywhere now, to get a glass of milk with a meal?

I remember reading Nero Wolfe stories and Archie Goodwin often ordering a glass of milk and just put that down to the 30's or a way to make Goodwin seem more "childish" in comparison to Wolfe or his eccentricity or something. I've never really before considered that a grown up - a president, no less! - would have milk with a meal. (Of course I'm from a lactose-intolerant population, and wouldn't blink an eye at someone ordering soy milk...)
posted by pianissimo at 11:45 PM on July 18, 2015


Definitely not that crazy for older Americans. If you can digest it, it's a very nutritionally packed product (especially if your soft alternative is Coke or very sweetened iced tea) and can actually be very refreshing. With a light meal like that it would definitely also help with making it filling.
posted by Drinky Die at 11:48 PM on July 18, 2015 [1 favorite]


Bland food and drink only serves to throw the great taste of Charleston Chew into starker relief.
posted by protorp at 11:54 PM on July 18, 2015 [7 favorites]


Milk as the standard beverage accompanying meals was definitely a thing when I was a young kid in the seventies. And cottage cheese and canned fruit seemed to be the diet option on restaurant menus, too.
posted by skybluepink at 11:57 PM on July 18, 2015 [7 favorites]


Well that would put me in the right frame of mind to resign.
posted by mazola at 12:03 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Older American here:

Was it a thing then, and is it still a thing anywhere now, to get a glass of milk with a meal?

Sure it was. Thirty years ago the words "lactose intolerant" didn't exist. At least not in the same sentence. We ate bread with flour in it and, on special days, had bacon made from actual pigs. Soda had sugar from sugar cane in it. It was like a drug.

Now only prisoners get milk with meals and you have to search bodegas for the real Coke™
posted by cedar at 12:03 AM on July 19, 2015 [20 favorites]


... total disregard for Constitutionally guaranteed rights that he displayed in his persecution of dissent

I swear I read this as "in his persecution of dessert."
posted by taz at 12:05 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


DoctorFedora - you're not alone. Jon just retweeted someone who sent it to him.
posted by wotsac at 14:00 on July 19 [+] [!]


[waves]
posted by DoctorFedora at 12:10 AM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Looking at that photo, from that POV, I have never felt more like Nixon.
posted by mazola at 12:11 AM on July 19, 2015 [8 favorites]


I swear I read this as "in his persecution of dessert."

I'm sure it's just the fruit cocktail talking. Have a nice glass of milk, you'll be fine.
posted by cedar at 12:18 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


During many of my Southern childhood vacations I was handed menus that posed problems for me. I had the brains and eggs once because I wanted to shock mom. It was too sweet and I pretended to relish it.

Malt vinegar, a little oil and pepper on cottage cheese is not to be sneered at. Dice a tomato in and there you go. Too foodie for Nixon.
posted by Mr. Yuck at 12:23 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


Four more years of this? I quit!
posted by mazola at 12:23 AM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


the Nixon administration introduced the Clean Air Act, created the EPA, introduced wage and price controls, enforced integration by busing, and found ways to finance LBJ's Great Society

Some of this stuff was happening whether he wanted it to or not (especially the Clean Air Act, which was signed into law by Johnson in the '60s). To say he introduced or created all of this doesn't come close to capturing the truth. He vetoed the Clean Water Act. Nixon was a monster.
posted by the christopher hundreds at 12:29 AM on July 19, 2015 [23 favorites]


This looks exactly like one of the pictures from one of my mother's extensive collection of 1970s cookbooks.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 12:29 AM on July 19, 2015 [6 favorites]


Ah, cottage cheese. I remember when that used to be a thing through the 70s, though that particular fad died out sometime by the mid 80s. People pretended to like it but no one really did. Sort of the opposite of bacon.
posted by zardoz at 12:31 AM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Was it a thing then, and is it still a thing anywhere now, to get a glass of milk with a meal?
In Germany and especially the Netherlands it's customary to drink milk with breakfast and lunch.
posted by jouke at 12:35 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


Back when I was a kid we used to have cottage cheese all the time. The family usually just ate it with black pepper and nothing else on it, as a side dish. Looking back I realize that we probably did that because who could afford fruit from the grocery store, that was something you only ever got when your tree or a neighbor's was ready to drop. Fruit was something that came in a black and white labeled can that read "Fruit" and nothing else, save the nutritional info. Come to think of it these were the nixon/ford/Carter years.

The first time I saw someone eating fruit with their cottage cheese I figured they had to be some sort of monster.
posted by mcrandello at 12:40 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


By that I mean, what a cruel prank. No, I'm not going to have any, that can't possibly taste any good stop trying to get me to try that. You're weird.
posted by mcrandello at 12:42 AM on July 19, 2015


Well, the texture is weird and needs to be accounted for in what you eat it with, but taste wise it is basically paneer which is a big part of, objectively, the most delicious dish on the planet. Can understand why the cottage cheese texture grosses people out though.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:47 AM on July 19, 2015 [9 favorites]


There is, out in the wild but hidden, a recipe for an unholy concoction of Jello, canned fruit and cottage cheese. This was frequently served at the beach club my family favored and was always a post shuffleboard favorite.
posted by cedar at 12:49 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]



If things had been a little more precise, if the silverware were equidistant from the tray, if the tray were in the center of the table, you could have told me this was a Wes Anderson still


When I look at that picture I want so badly to get it into photoshop and straighten everything out. I don't know if I would have been able to take the picture without adjusting everything so it lined up better. Also, I love Wes Anderson films.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 12:49 AM on July 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


The Billy Graham Impeachment, Swearing Out ceremony from the National Lampoon Missing White House Tapes album.
posted by dougzilla at 12:50 AM on July 19, 2015


Oh I know Drinky Die, but I mean specifically with fruit. I mean I'd eaten this stuff for years with nothing but pepper on it, sometimes right out of the tub if it was near empty. Loved that stuff. With fruit? Still haven't gotten around to trying it. And cedar, I think I know what you're talking about and I think it's in Lileks' gallery of regrettable foods.
posted by mcrandello at 12:54 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


It all seems a little quaint. A few minutes of missing tape and bombing some country most of us couldn't find on a map? That's all you got? We're doing that on a daily basis these days.

man, I wanna be with you, but even today I think it's worthwhile not to minimize Nixon's crimes.


Back in the Andrew Jackson thread from a couple weeks ago, we were talking about how pretty much every President before him (and most of those who came after up through, oh, 1900 or thereabouts) participated in the genocidal campaigns against the native Americans. Yet at the same time, his contribution was unique and also set some important precedents, legally speaking, that enabled the process. The same can probably be said of Nixon.

Amongst the other crimes noted already, the Nixon administration introduced the Clean Air Act, created the EPA, introduced wage and price controls, enforced integration by busing, and found ways to finance LBJ's Great Society. He ultimately ended America's massive military involvement in LBJ's war and engaged with China. And also Laos, Camdodia, and Watergate. So one can indeed wonder what guilt was on the man's conscience when he sat before that classic dietary-minded 1970s breakfast.

George W. Bush did some useful things during his term as well. Pretty much every President does some good, if only due to the practical necessities of keeping things going.

Some of this stuff was happening whether he wanted it to or not (especially the Clean Air Act, which was signed into law by Johnson in the '60s). To say he introduced or created all of this doesn't come close to capturing the truth. He vetoed the Clean Water Act. Nixon was a monster.

Richard Nixon is often held up as a unique paragon of evil and depravity, and that idea is both counterfactual and counterproductive. Partly I suspect it's a product of the fact that the generation upon whom his presidency made the deepest impression is the one which is running things at the moment, partly because a great deal of unpleasantness can be hidden underneath the myth that evil was exorcised from the executive branch when he left.

And part, I suppose, because Nixon was, perhaps more than any president since Theodore Roosevelt, a personality first and a public figure after. But what presidents do is rarely governed by personality, and Nixon was no exception. I'm honestly not sure that his Vietnam policy differed from what Johnson would have done, had he continued in office. His domestic policies were, as noted, a continuation of Johnson's with a few bones thrown to conservative critics of the latter.

This isn't to say that Nixon shouldn't be held morally responsible, but at the same time he's become a sort of symbol, a talisman of evil, of What Went Wrong. He was a symptom of the office, and the fact that he turned more malignantly cancerous than others doesn't change that fact. We've allowed a system to evolve that selects certain kinds of people to take power, and gives them a set of choices to which their responses are, within a fairly tight range, predictable.

Nixon didn't stay in Vietnam because he enjoyed the wails of Cambodian children burning. He stayed in Vietnam out of political calculation. The moral choice would have been to leave immediately and take the political hit, quite possibly lose office at the next election. But the system that he operated within did not reward moral choices, in fact it actively weeds out actors who make them. And it offers them endless opportunities to survive making the immoral, tactically useful choice. Likewise, what we, on the liberal slope of the political spectrum, would call his "positive legacy" - the EPA and the rest of it - seems to have proceeded from the same place. Some of these initiatives were already in motion and just too powerful to stop, and Nixon was never one to deliberately turn against the political tide. Others allowed him to keep the political allegiance of moderates and liberals. Others still were simply sensible measures necessary to keeping the country functioning and the population happy.

If you try to analyze Nixon on a basis of his putative moral impulses - as a "monster" or a "misunderstood" - you'll look at his legacy and wonder whether there wasn't something redeemable about him. But I think that Nixon was, at root, the purest reflection of the system, driven by the ambition to become, and remain, President. The good and the evil, and even his downfall. He did not overstep himself on principle, but by seeking to ensure his own re-election by illegal means.

A monster? Perhaps a monstrum in the original, Latin sense: as a sign, and a warning, meant to instruct. A lesson, about our country, about our government, about our future.

Which we failed to heed.

By the by: I was born in 1984. I eat milk with every breakfast, and cottage cheese is the fucking best.
posted by AdamCSnider at 1:13 AM on July 19, 2015 [80 favorites]


"Archie Goodwin often ordering a glass of milk and just put that down to the 30's or a way to make Goodwin seem more "childish" in comparison to Wolfe or his eccentricity or something."

Needs more Stout.

{at dinner ... I stuck to milk, but I had had a shot of rye upstairs. FdL, ch. 12, p. 15
... I was unenjoying myself at a fern and palm joint in Danbury with a plate of liver and bacon that had absolutely been fried in differential grease. FdL, ch. 14, p. 208}

No milk.

There's more, but Archie was no child. You know, Ya don't see Saul Panzer gibbing Arch about milk. If you worked for Wolfe, you'd drink milk too. Besides, Wolfe drank like six 40s' a day.
These attacks on our precious Lactose must cease!

Dick in '71.
"Now let's look at Cambodia. We have made a conscious decision not to send American troops in. There are no American combat troops in Cambodia. There are no American combat advisers in Cambodia. There will be no American combat troops or advisers in Cambodia.

We will aid Cambodia. Cambodia is the Nixon Doctrine in its purest form; Vietnam was in violation of the Nixon Doctrine. Because in Cambodia what we are doing is helping the Cambodians to help themselves, and we are doing that rather than to go in and do the fighting ourselves, as we did in Korea and as we did in Vietnam. We hope not to make that mistake again if we can avoid it."

You may release your selective screams now.
posted by clavdivs at 1:14 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I love cottage cheese. My dad who grew up in the 70s taught me to eat it with just black pepper, though now he likes to add canned pineapple, just like this, which I do on occasion and it is delicious. I also eat it with a slice of toasted black bread for lunch at times.

That's all I have to add.
posted by easter queen at 1:14 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


We got Carter for four years, and then everything Nixon represented came back in full, and all five Presidents since then have had dirty hands

As did Carter, on whose watch the Soviets invaded Afghanistan and who responded by arming the same people who'd morph into the Taliban and Al Quida, trying to create the USSR's own Vietnam.

Not to mention Nicaragua where he kept supporting the fascist dictatorship there in the face of the Sandinista uprising.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:39 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


The whole picture is weird. That's some pretty shabby looking furniture for the white house as well. You could have told me this was a picture of teacher's lunch in their break room and I would have believed you but for the silver serving tray.
posted by srboisvert at 1:51 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


Richard Nixon is often held up as a unique paragon of evil and depravity, and that idea is both counterfactual and counterproductive.

Yes. Every US president has blood on their hands, no matter how idealistic they start out. And there's always a disconnect between their domestic agenda and their foreign policy.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:52 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


Iran supported the Contras and Carter cut off aid in 77'. No one tried to create a Vietnam, the soviets did it themselves. If your going to comment on someone else's history, please get your facts straight.
posted by clavdivs at 1:57 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


"Every US president has blood on their hands, no matter how idealistic they start out."

Not Calvin Coolidge.
posted by clavdivs at 2:07 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


What about William Henry Harrison? (Just during his Presidency I mean, don't look at the Army career.)
posted by Drinky Die at 2:14 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Reminded me of that project where a photographer was recreating the last meals of prisoners about to be executed... which is not that far away from reality.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:58 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Was it a thing then, and is it still a thing anywhere now, to get a glass of milk with a meal?

I last ordered a glass of milk in a restaurant less than 36 hours ago with no eye-rolling or stupefaction on the part of either my dining companion or the waitress. Perhaps things changed more yesterday than I realized.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 3:05 AM on July 19, 2015 [21 favorites]


Not Calvin Coolidge.

How could you tell?
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:19 AM on July 19, 2015 [8 favorites]


Srboisvert, there was a whole lot of effort put into making that wood look exactly like the formica version of that wood. It's a very 50's to 70's thing. I mean that's unparalleled skill in woodfinishing, but eh. It's like when jazz or rock musicians spend years perfecting their craft and wind up turning into muzak. A ways back I'd learned in one of those links that there's a senate cabinet shop that does quite a bit of work with the chambers' furniture and handled the work on the "Resolute" desk that sits in the oval office. I have to wonder if they did that piece, and if they'd admit it.
posted by mcrandello at 3:35 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


The Billy Graham Impeachment, Swearing Out ceremony...

My memory says Graham is depicted saying, "God damn you, Richard Nixon, you lied your ass off!" My favorite part was the impeachment day parade, with the typical cheerful network announcers: "Well, it's a perfect day for an impeachment here in Washington. The skies are grey and cloudy..."
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:54 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


Huh, somehow I never looked into the history of the Resolute desk. Pretty neat.

H.M.S. RESOLUTE forming part of the expedition sent in search of SIR JOHN FRANKLIN IN 1852, was abandoned in latitude 74° 41' N longitude 101° 22' W[5] on 15th May 1854. She was discovered and extricated in September 1855 in latitude 67 degrees N[6] by Captain Buddington of the United States Whaler "GEORGE HENRY."

The ship was purchased, fitted out and sent to England as a gift to HER MAJESTY QUEEN VICTORIA by the PRESIDENT AND PEOPLE of the UNITED STATES as a token of goodwill & friendship. This table was made from her timbers when she was broken up, and is presented by the QUEEN OF GREAT BRITAIN & IRELAND to the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES as a memorial of the courtesy and loving kindness which dictated the offer of the gift of the "RESOLUTE."


I wish nations engaged in competitive awesome gift giving more instead of war or sports. The Statue of Liberty needs a few huge siblings.
posted by Drinky Die at 4:09 AM on July 19, 2015 [10 favorites]


I'm comfortable with calling Nixon a monster. That doesn't mean he's the only monster. I think even a few things Nixon did are enough to warrant calling him a monster - the bombing of Cambodia, for one, might not have brought him visceral glee, but he certainly didn't care about the Cambodians he was blowing to pieces, nor the population he was radicalizing behind what used to be a fairly small band of Maoists, leaving behind so much unexploded ordinance and mines (either directly from the US or from the Khmer Rouge, who were back by the US well into the Carter administration) that they're still cleaning it up to this day. He used the IRS as his personal attack dog against anyone who so much as ridiculed him (fun fact: Andy Warhol started his diaries as a means of keeping track of expenditures after Nixon sicked the IRS on him for designing a campaign poster for McGovern). And he engaged in a concerted campaign of racebaiting across the South that would have profound cultural and political effects to this day. We don't have to believe all the other presidents were saints to see what a horrible human being Nixon was.
posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 4:12 AM on July 19, 2015 [18 favorites]


Tricky Dick is laughing in his grave.


Aroo.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 4:31 AM on July 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


Richard Nixon is often held up as a unique paragon of evil and depravity, and that idea is both counterfactual and counterproductive.

But he was uniquely deranged, paranoid, and visibly dangerous. To that subset of the youth who had grown up with the amiable industry of Ike, and had seen Nixon's campaign against JFK, he began to seem stranger and stranger. Anyone who took LSD began to see him as something so vividly weird that he presented as terrifying even when you weren't tripping. A roommate who took acid and painted acid pictures came back from a weekend wearing a Nixon mask she had spent all weekend making, and I burst into tears at the sight of her.

Another friend who went on a peace march in 1970 was one of the unfortunates Nixon met up with when he took that midnight stroll.. My friend went into hiding for several weeks after that, because the man was so obviously crazy that the Apocalypse must be right around the corner.
posted by Peach at 4:46 AM on July 19, 2015 [33 favorites]


I'm honestly not sure that his Vietnam policy differed from what Johnson would have done, had he continued in office. His domestic policies were, as noted, a continuation of Johnson's with a few bones thrown to conservative critics of the latter.

My recollection is that Johnson declined to run, almost certainly due to the failure the war in Vietnam. And Nixon campaigned in 1968 promising that he had a secret plan that would end that war. At the end of his first term, the United States was still fighting the war.

Regarding his domestic politics, that included the Southern strategy, the Republican plan to win historically-Democratic white voters by appeals to racism and support for continued segregation.

I don't think your comparison with Johnson is accurate.
posted by layceepee at 4:52 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


The first thing that struck me about that photo is how no one so much as bothered to rotate the plate a little so the Presidential seal is at 12 o'clock. I kind of thought the White House staff paid a little more attention to those sorts of details.

And, cottage cheese with pineapple rocks.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:14 AM on July 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


I find it odd that people think eating cottage cheese with fruit is strange when we brave modernists will readily eat a plastic cup of ultraprocessed fake Greek yogurt that's a sugarbomb of day-glo artificiality and think it's healthy (try finding a single serving of plain, whole milk yogurt in any store not focused entirely on the rich white airpincher crowd these days).

Mind you, I was inspired by this post and made a quick reduction of mulberries from the tree outside my bedroom window, honey, and balsamic vinegar and drizzled it over a little bowl of whole milk large curd cottage cheese and it was fantastic and healthy.
posted by sonascope at 5:22 AM on July 19, 2015 [20 favorites]


Can understand why the cottage cheese texture grosses people out though.

Cottage cheese has the second grossest texture of anything I have ever eaten. (The worst was some kind of side dish at a Japanese restaurant that tasted great but looked and felt like snot). It is both chunky and slimy, very much like a pile of dead or sleeping maggots, but squishier.

The first thing that struck me about that photo is how no one so much as bothered to rotate the plate a little so the Presidential seal is at 12 o'clock.

Everything is slightly misplaced, including where the tray was set on the table.
posted by Dip Flash at 5:23 AM on July 19, 2015


If you desire to view the humble plate of food in a more ominous light, you could view it as the meal that marks the beginning of a 40 year drive on the part of the GOP to get revenge on the Democrats for Nixon's fall, by forcing a Democratic President out of office.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:23 AM on July 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


sonascope: try finding a single serving of plain, whole milk yogurt in any store not focused entirely on the rich white airpincher crowd these days
Easy-peasy. But probably not in the US. Overall, I think yoghurt is a lot more common in Europe.
posted by Too-Ticky at 5:32 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Easy-peasy. But probably not in the US. Overall, I think yoghurt is a lot more common in Europe.

Should have identified my frame of reference, but yeah, Americans turned yogurt into magical healthypudding or The Official Food Of Women™ and we've gleefully surrendered to infantile comfort-craving food habits and our fear of yucky icky grossifying poo poo blecchy sophisticated and/or subtle flavors and so everything needs to be swimming in corn syrup. Mind you, in Europe, the Duncan-Hines-cake-icing-in-a-plastic-tub horror that is Nutella is considered perfectly respectable, so all continents have their absurdities.
posted by sonascope at 5:46 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


Gonna have to dispute the comparison between Nutella and cake frosting, but I have science on my side. There's a café in town that used to be renowned for their crepes; in particular, their Nutella and banana crepes. Then one day the owner - without telling anyone but his trusted staff - stopped using Nutella and started using chocolate cake frosting. The result? A torrent of complaints about wtf did you do to these crepes they taste like chocolate garbage from the chocolate dumpster.

It's the hazelnuts.
posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 5:53 AM on July 19, 2015 [10 favorites]


As a kid growing up, up through high school, we drank milk with dinner. Maybe two glasses of skim each. My uncle would pick up two gallons when he went shopping every Saturday, and usually about Wednesday, he'd tell me to drive to the store to get another. Mind you, this is early nineties, not ancient history.

As for cottage cheese, every once in a while, I'd get a hunger for it, all that cool creaminess. I'd usually get through about four bites or so before my mind reminded me that I wasn't all that crazy about the texture.
posted by Ghidorah at 6:09 AM on July 19, 2015


Gonna have to dispute the comparison between Nutella and cake frosting, but I have science on my side.

Ingredients in Nutella:

Sugar, palm oil, hazelnuts, cocoa, skim milk, whey (milk), lecithin as emulsifier (soy), vanillin: an artificial flavor.

Ingredients in Duncan Hines chocolate frosting:

Sugar, Water, Vegetables Shortening ( Soybeans Oil Partially Hydrogenated, and, Cottonseed Oil, Mono and Diglycerides, Polysorbate 60 ), Cocoa Powder Processed with Alkali, Corn Syrup, Contains 2% or less of the Following: (Corn Starch, Salt, Flavors Natural & Artificial Chocolate, Sugar Invert, Preservative ( Potassium Sorbate ), Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate

Both are tubs of sugar. Taste-wise, they're arguably worlds apart, but health-wise, both are aimed at modern humans whose eating habits mirror those of houseflies.
posted by sonascope at 6:19 AM on July 19, 2015 [9 favorites]


I have a half a tub of cottage cheese in my fridge and some ripe, ready to go nectarines on my counter right now, ready to be eaten for breakfast, just like what I had for breakfast yesterday. To be washed down with a tall glass of milk like what I drink for every meal.

I can't believe I'm defending Nixon on any front, but cottage cheese and fruit is the shit and milk is the shit and all y'all haterz can kiss my butt.
posted by phunniemee at 6:20 AM on July 19, 2015 [14 favorites]


Huh, somehow I never looked into the history of the Resolute desk. Pretty neat.

You might want to set aside your Sunday.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 6:20 AM on July 19, 2015 [6 favorites]


I will also add, as an aside to sonascope, that the day before for breakfast I ate a banana and a spoonful of nutella. And a tall glass of milk.
posted by phunniemee at 6:22 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


That's a lunch?!? Man I eat too much. I should go on the Nixon diet maybe
posted by ian1977 at 6:29 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


You might want to set aside your Sunday.

Nice. Thanks for the link and thanks felix for the FPP.
posted by Drinky Die at 6:31 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Both are tubs of sugar.

Yeah, no one will ever dispute this, even if that frosting has an even scarier ingredients list than I supposed. Nutella's at least sort of resemble something like "food" rather than a middle school science fair project.

In fairness, the first time I saw Euro kids eating Nutella on bread for breakfast, I was momentarily horrified. Then I remembered bowl after bowl of Cocoa Puffs my childhood friends used to eat and was like "oh well, at least it has nuts in it".
posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 6:32 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


You might want to set aside your Sunday.

Or just watch National Treasure 2 on Netflix.
posted by biffa at 6:34 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


That is also a compelling suggestion.

Look at Nicolas Cage.
He made many horrible movies.
Snake Eyes, Eight Millimeter, Gone in Sixty Seconds, Captain Corelli's Mandolin, Windtalkers, Ghost Rider, Family Man, Weather Man, Wicker Man, Bangkok Dangerous.
But then he nailed it, Stan, with National Treasure Two, the greatest movie of all time! He did nail it! He nailed it so hard that he became a national treasure too.

posted by Drinky Die at 6:40 AM on July 19, 2015


> Kennedy wanted to "win hearts and minds", Nixon wanted "peace with honor" and Johnson seems to have just wanted to kill Asian people.

Oh, come on. I despised LBJ and marched against him and his war and was delighted when he resigned (and was Clean for Gene in '68), but that's bullshit. He knew the war was wrong and would ruin his historical image, but he couldn't figure out how to end it other than listen to all his expert advisers (The Best and the Brightest) who were telling him the only way was to send in more troops and drop more bombs. He did a lot of good as president (believe me, I say that through gritted teeth), he was probably the least racist of any president before Carter, and his presidency is a real tragedy, as opposed to Nixon's, which is just a bad man doing bad things and getting caught.

Also, kudos for a great MeFi post, and my personal thanks for not padding it out with a bunch of supplementary links about Nixon and the White House and the history of cottage cheese. Single-link forever!
posted by languagehat at 6:48 AM on July 19, 2015 [40 favorites]


Thank you for releasing this odd burst of atmosphere.

My father shared an elevator with Richard Nixon once. He reported the conversation as follows:
"This elevator is broken."
"Yes."
posted by feral_goldfish at 6:58 AM on July 19, 2015 [8 favorites]


This thread, peppered with delightful digressions, flavored with a rich reduction of decades-old outrages, and garnished with obscure anecdata of varying accuracy, could itself be a symbol of everything wonderful about metafilter, just as that horrifying meal is an excellent symbol of the end of a certain vision of America, just as Nixon is a useful proxy for all that is terrible in those who wield political power. I mean, he was no Reagan, but he was an utter shit, and he was an utter shit in a way that defines that brand of shittiness, and why that kind of shittiness matters, when you are the President of the United States of America.
posted by latkes at 7:03 AM on July 19, 2015 [9 favorites]


Cedar: cherry jello mix, cottage cheese, cool whip, can of mandarin oranges, can of crushed pineapple, maybe some other soft fruits. Mix and chill. Mom makes it all the time at home. We just call it pink stuff. Delicious.
posted by deezil at 7:08 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


The real question is small curd or large curd.
posted by peeedro at 7:22 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


and garnished with obscure anecdata of varying accuracy,

this is a conversation, not a scientific article. "anecdata" are OK in that venue.
posted by thelonius at 7:27 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


Lactaid now makes lactose-free cottage cheese, which I enjoy for breakfast with pineapple several times a week.

To date, I have never bombed Cambodia or surreptitiously taped my conversations.

Also, I am not a crook.
posted by briank at 7:29 AM on July 19, 2015 [13 favorites]


(try finding a single serving of plain, whole milk yogurt in any store not focused entirely on the rich white airpincher crowd these days).

They have this in every grocery store within like three miles of my place.
posted by Greg Nog at 7:38 AM on July 19, 2015 [12 favorites]


I was having a secret affair with a work colleague. I'd gone into the kitchen area in the office to make a cup of coffee, and while that was brewing decided to have a glass of milk.

As I was drinking it, said colleague came in. They looked at me, looked at the milk, and said "I'm not fucking anyone who drinks milk. Are you drinking milk?" "No," I said, and poured it down the sink. "Right," they said, and left.

Just sayin'.
posted by Devonian at 7:42 AM on July 19, 2015 [14 favorites]


Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane: In fairness, the first time I saw Euro kids eating Nutella on bread for breakfast, I was momentarily horrified. Then I remembered bowl after bowl of Cocoa Puffs my childhood friends used to eat and was like "oh well, at least it has nuts in it".

I don't think Nutella is intrinsically more horrifying than peanut butter + jelly, which has that same combination of fat and sugar. It's just a matter of what you're used to.
Here in the Netherlands, putting not one but two kinds of spread on the same slice of bread is pretty subversive. So we have our sugar-and-fat combination neatly contained in one (glass) jar. It's fine, just don't go pretending it's healthy because it's not. But everyone knows that.

Don't even get me started on chocolate sprinkles. Especially the good kind, made from real chocolate.
posted by Too-Ticky at 7:47 AM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


[adjusts onion on belt]

All the "OMG do people even drink milk or eat cottage cheese anymore" reminds me of MeFi threads where people are unironically like "LOL who even uses the post office anymore I pay all my bills online" or "ugh who even goes to the library anymore these days."

I mean... I get that I'm both old and old-fashioned in many ways but what am I supposed to eat or drink that won't make me a square? (And that has protein but not 25 grams of corn syrup per serving?)
posted by usonian at 7:49 AM on July 19, 2015 [15 favorites]


Joseph Gurl: "I'd eat it."

I'd let you. Less for me.
posted by Splunge at 7:54 AM on July 19, 2015


what am I supposed to eat or drink that won't make me a square? (And that has protein but not 25 grams of corn syrup per serving?)

Big Glass Of Ham Slurry
posted by Greg Nog at 7:57 AM on July 19, 2015 [8 favorites]


Zima
posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 7:57 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


mix the two

they call this cocktail "The Frisky Pig"
posted by Greg Nog at 7:59 AM on July 19, 2015 [31 favorites]


I never could stand cottage cheese, and a dish like this seems... incomplete. Where's the starch? Where are the greens? Does the cottage cheese even count as protein? It seems lacking in a number of ways.

The glass of milk with dinner is something I fell out of favor with in recent years because as I've gotten older, milk tends to give me heartburn later on at night, keeping me awake. For breakfast, though? Milk is the best drink to wash down those eggs, hash browns and bacon with.
posted by surazal at 7:59 AM on July 19, 2015


what am I supposed to eat or drink that won't make me a square? (And that has protein

cochicken

but not 25 grams of corn syrup per serving?)

Oh, nevermind. Maybe use Passover or Mexican Coca Cola.
posted by mcrandello at 8:05 AM on July 19, 2015


I don't think Nutella is intrinsically more horrifying than peanut butter + jelly, which has that same combination of fat and sugar.

Granted, I'm peculiar, but my PBJ is a paper-thin film of jalapeno preserves and a couple tablespoons of peanut butter that contains only peanuts and salt, so I'm nowhere near the 55% sugar to 13% nutmeat ratio that you get with Nutella.

On the cottage cheese front, the NPR story that gave birth to this photo meme presents an interesting tale of changing food fads.
posted by sonascope at 8:08 AM on July 19, 2015


Wait a minute. Talk of Dutch and bread and spreads and no mention of the One True Food: bread, butter, and DeRuijter chocolate sprinkles?
posted by maxwelton at 8:09 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


This picture so perfectly encapsulates the period and the presidency of Nixon. The vaguely disturbing askew placement seems a call to action; yet...there's nothing you can do to straighten things, to make them orderly. The food itself, pedestrian by presidential standards; a reminder that Tricky Dick was many things to many people, but he was the actually Of The People, a thing which he was despised and reviled for by the Ruling Class (tm). The simplicity of the setting, the utter lack of fancy food plating, the horrid furniture and beige environment... it is all so perfectly, terribly, stunningly the best picture of Nixon I've experienced.
posted by dejah420 at 8:09 AM on July 19, 2015 [13 favorites]


I never could stand cottage cheese, and a dish like this seems... incomplete. Where's the starch? Where are the greens? Does the cottage cheese even count as protein? It seems lacking in a number of ways.

Huh? That much cottage cheese has about 15-20 grams of protein. A large glass of milk like that has nearly 20. For comparison, a chicken breast has about 20.

Just because ew calf slobbers cow leavings grossss doesn't mean that dairy doesn't pack a hell of a nutritional punch.
posted by phunniemee at 8:10 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


My data point: I drink milk with pretty much every meal, I go through a gallon of milk all by myself every 2 or 3 days. Mostly this came to be after cutting out diet soda and 70%-80% of the carbs in my diet and I've lost somewhere between 30 - 40 pounds in the past two years without changing anything else. Milk: It Does A Body Good!

That said: I tried the fruit-and-cottage-cheese as part of my diet, and while I like cottage cheese in general, I couldn't do it. It just wasn't...good...and I don't like fruit much anyhow. Cottage cheese and salmon, however, was wayyy better than I expected, but became a very expensive breakfast compared to the bark-and-twigs-high-fiber cereal I settled on.

In summary: Nixon.
posted by AzraelBrown at 8:22 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I can go to any local Meijers or Kroger in central MI and have no trouble finding plain yogurt in nonfat, low fat, and standard varieties.
posted by rfs at 8:24 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Growing up, we usually just added a dab of mayo on our cottage cheese. Dad insisted on small curd but after he left we ate whatever size curd was to hand. Nowadays I mix in a little balsamic vinaigrette or eat it plain. Mom used to make all kinds of cottage cheese JELL-O molds, but then again, I don't think there's anything that woman wouldn't gel into a mold and take to a church supper.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 8:25 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


Excuse me, but cottage cheese with grape jelly is a great delicacy, and it is called Poor Man's Ice Cream.
posted by blnkfrnk at 8:47 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


this is a conversation, not a scientific article. "anecdata" are OK in that venue.
I agree! It wasn't a complaint, but rather a statement of fond regard!

posted by latkes at 8:49 AM on July 19, 2015


This looks alot like Stephen Shore's photos of food, which makes me wonder about the effect of new photographic movements on something so staid...see here
posted by PinkMoose at 8:58 AM on July 19, 2015


Talk of Dutch and bread and spreads and no mention of the One True Food: bread, butter, and DeRuijter chocolate sprinkles?

I know! That's like the best thing ever. Although my maternal grandfather, from whom I learned some tricks about Dutch breakfasts, liked to take a piece of toast, piping hot, and quickly spread butter and chocolate sprinkles on it, so that it would all melt in.

But however you do it, the butter is key - it is the glue that holds the sprinkles in. My wife is also of Dutch background, and at one point early in the marriage we were sitting down to breakfast and from somewhere we had gotten a box of chocolate sprinkles. And I reached for it, and my wife said "The trick with that is having lots of butter -" at which point I showed her the piece of bread I had buttered in preparation. "I am wise in the ways of chocolate sprinkles," I said. It was a good moment.

And then we laughed about the weird Dutch practice of hanging calendars in the bathroom with everyone's birthday on them.

Anyways - this is a fascinating photograph and the discussion has been amazing.
posted by nubs at 9:01 AM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


I love milk. I love cottage cheese. The thought of eating them together is disgusting. I love pineapple. The idea of eating pineapple with cottage cheese is a complete meh. The idea of eating pineapple with milk is between meh and disgusting.

Nixon did not know how to eat.
posted by bukvich at 9:19 AM on July 19, 2015


To bridge the gap of fruit and spicy when it comes to cottage cheese, try adding strawberries, balsamic vinegar, and black pepper. And get the large curd, it's much less weird in terms of texture.
posted by blnkfrnk at 9:25 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


> Richard Nixon is often held up as a unique paragon of evil and depravity, and that idea is both counterfactual and counterproductive.

He's a war criminal. The illegal bombing of Cambodia and Laos, countries the US wasn't even at war with, directly killed a hundred thousand people - and who knows how much consequent damage due to the destabilization of the region. And we haven't even talked about Vietnamese deaths.

Any analysis that tries to talk around the great piles of murdered bodies is ethically bankrupt sophistry. He's a war criminal, and in a just world would have long ago been tried and executed. The one thing I agree with is that he wasn't unique in his evil.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 9:29 AM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


I've read the entire thread but it's possible I missed it: the revolting part was that Nixon ate cottage cheese with ketchup.

It also has a lot of sodium.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 9:35 AM on July 19, 2015


Amongst the other crimes noted already, the Nixon administration introduced the Clean Air Act, created the EPA, introduced wage and price controls, enforced integration by busing, and found ways to finance LBJ's Great Society. He ultimately ended America's massive military involvement in LBJ's war and engaged with China.
I just can't let this go. Although Nixon's record on environmental issues was actually one of his most laudable accomplishments and it is certainly true that he started the EPA, you should also point out that he vetoed the Clean Water Act and at that particular time environmental protections enjoyed very broad bipartisan support and were more or less inevitable. He timed his veto of the Clean Water Act to happen 40 minutes before the law was to be effective and his veto was overridden by a 52-12 vote two hours later. I don't think anyone at the time regarded Nixon as a particular champion of environmental issues (nice review of the history)

The wage and price controls are nearly universally regarded as a massive failure that actually led to worse economic consequences that the problems they were intended to solve. For much of the 70s we had both rampant inflation and virtually no economic growth ("stagflation").

Nixon opposed busing and drug his feet on enforcing integration. He appointed Agnew to try to find local solutions and pioneered the "Southern Strategy." He pioneered the states rights dogwhistle movement and ran in 1968 on a "law and order" theme that was widely seen as code for a racist message of suppressing the Civil Rights movement. He basically ignored the Fair Housing Act -- preferring what he called "voluntary integration." (Nixon's Civil Rights: Politics, Principle, and Policy by Dean J Kotlowski is a great resource for this and much more of his failures to address Civil Rights issues).

Nixon did in fact preside over the end of the war in Vietnam, but surely with great reluctance. Hell, the entire 1972 campaign was more or less set up as a referendum on the war. LBJ was scaling down the war in 1968 and it took 5 more years and many more dead American kids to get it done and it is beyond clear that either Humprey or McGovern would have ended it much faster. Nixon supporters do not get to brag that he "ended" the damn war.

Nixon was a horrible president and no amount of retroactive bullshitting will change that.
posted by Lame_username at 9:35 AM on July 19, 2015 [21 favorites]


My Republican history teacher in high school deliberately spent a great deal of time lambasting JFK and Johnson so the semester would end before we could get to Nixon. Never forgave him for that.
posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 9:56 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I wish I liked cottage cheese more, because it has a lot of good nutritional value (as phunnieme Points out). Fresh ground black pepper and chives helps a lot though. I burned out on that while pregnant trying to get enough protein though.
posted by JenMarie at 9:57 AM on July 19, 2015


Also? While not responsible for the genocide in Bangladesh, he certainly knew about it while it was happening, gave a whole bunch of support to the regime that carried it out, did not one damn thing to prevent or stop it, and let millions of Bangladeshis die.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 10:19 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


The picture reminded me of how very spartan our meals were much of the time back then. And I like cottage cheese (didn't realize it's like cilantro in that people are sharply divided about it).

My mom's diet meals used to consist of a half cup of cottage cheese and a quarter of a cantaloupe.
posted by Peach at 10:23 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


My grandfather, who was about Nixon's age, drank mostly milk. He didn't drink coffee at home (he went to the coffee shop/diner to sit with his buddies for an hour, while he drank 1.5 cups of decaf/"Sanka" until nobody knew what that was anymore), didn't drink alcohol or soda, didn't drink juice until he found out about resveratrol and then had 4oz of concord grape juice before dinner, and didn't really like iced tea.

His milk of choice was Carnation nonfat powdered milk, which my grandmother shook up in a gallon jar and kept in the fridge. But he always ordered it at restaurants and drank whatever they had. Pretty much all restaurants either have milk for cooking or mini-cartons for kids.

He was a WWII Purple Heart recipient and couldn't stay in the room when we watched M*A*S*H. I don't remember his precise opinions on Nixon or Vietnam but I suspect they were complicated.

I am eating cottage cheese right now, with breakfast casserole that also has cottage cheese in it. When I am on serious low-carb lockdown my dessert of desperation is sugar-free lime jello with cottage cheese stirred in at the half-set point, topped with chopped pecans. This was also one of my grandfather's favorite "weeknight" desserts, when he wanted "just a little bit of something sweet" but didn't want to irritate his diabetes (another souvenir from his war injuries), though he couldn't have the pecans, as much as he liked them.
posted by Lyn Never at 10:24 AM on July 19, 2015 [12 favorites]


In context, the bombing in Cambodia was aimed at destroying the buildup of PAVN troops, a thing that loomed like a Damaclesian sword over the entire area. American soldiers bolstered an effort by the Vietnamese to do this, and they failed. Also in context, my team once ran a bomb-damage assessment patrol behind a flight of B-52's, along the Cambodian border. We flew at about a thousand feet, a kilometer or so behind the strike. I don't know how many B-52's were in the strike, but the bombs came out of nowhere, and moved through a strip of rain forest a kilometer wide and about three kilometers long--looked like somebody shaking a blanket. You could see the shock wave coming. Once the air stopped rocking you could hardly tell where the bombs hit. But on the ground it looked like the first circle in Hell. Some places the craters interlocked; a crater might be fifteen or twenty feet deep and twenty or more feet across. This was in an uninhabited area. If it had covered a village nobody would have survived. Anyhow, we were supposed to look for any bodies, or indications of tunnels (please try to imagine what we thought about instructions to look for bodies produced by one-thousand pound bombs). We found nothing but splintered trees. We radioed back that all we saw were monkeys in the trees with their hands over their ears. In a way, looking back, this impact zone was characteristic of our effort there, lacking the interwoven political bullshit and of course the unimaginable waste in human lives.

Tricky Dick is iconic. His deeds clashed, and what good he did was over-ridden by the times in which he served. I have more heat for LBJ than Nixon in respect to the war in Vietnam, although there's enough damning shame to spread around to the likes of Westmoreland and others for what happened there. I would cite Roosevelt, Truman, and Eisenhower as bad actors in the deeds that contributed to flushing the Vietnamese people down the drain in favor of currying favor for rebuilding Europe in a way that put the US at the apex of a hegemony there. The brown guys simply didn't matter.

His last official meal. Bon appetite, Dick. I share your taste for pineapple and cottage cheese.

Fuck You Gerald Ford. All those dead guys, and you bow to political expedience. I take it personally.

The last item in my bucket list is to go piss on Westmoreland's grave.

The worst part of this whole era is that we haven't learned a thing. One of the key actors, the head of the CIA at the time, is B-41. His legacy is strong, and the ghost of old Bomb-Them-Out himself (Curtis Lemay) still roams the halls of the War Department. I mean, the Defense Department. (Thanks G.O., I nearly forgot my newspeak.)
posted by mule98J at 10:42 AM on July 19, 2015 [31 favorites]


I just remembered volunteering at a Farm Bureau lunch a few years ago, where the only beverage choices were regular coffee, water, and whole milk.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 10:46 AM on July 19, 2015


I grew with my Dad's idea of making a meal for himself was cottage cheese and corned beef hash from a can all mixed up.

When we got a microwave he learned that he could make it hot really quickly.

Corned beef hash and cottage cheese that's been heated in the microwave does not smell pleasant.

Me and cottage cheese have never really gelled.
posted by Jalliah at 10:54 AM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Was it a thing then, and is it still a thing anywhere now, to get a glass of milk with a meal?

I had to shut down the will-we-won't-we dating dance with a guy when I saw him drink a big glass of milk with his sushi lunch. But otherwise, yeah, I don't really see anyone under like 60 or so doing this.

i hate cottage cheese a lot but only because it was forced on me by people who didn't believe lactose intolerance was a thing and who were insistent that it would "settle my stomach"
posted by poffin boffin at 10:54 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


That son-of-a-bitch deserved to be sad ... I certainly wasn't!
posted by Twang at 10:56 AM on July 19, 2015


I spent most of my life thinking milk-drinking was the thing to do, even though I'd go straight to bloated, nauseous hell whenever I tried. I thought that must happen to everybody. Like, I knew intellectually that POC often can't handle milk, but I figured that since I didn't burst into actual flames from drinking it, that didn't apply to me. These days I'm just a spectator. I watch my husband drink his milk the way one might watch a sword swallower swallow a sword. Lord almighty, some people drink milk and feel better afterwards.
posted by two or three cars parked under the stars at 11:06 AM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


it is certainly true that he [Nixon] started the EPA

The EPA's history page traces the origin of the agency from Rachel Carson's Silent Spring to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) introduced by Washington state Democrat Henry M Jackson in 1969. It notes that Nixon was "reluctant," but in the face of near-unanimous public opinion, got in front of the parade. The success of the first Earth Day in 1970 gave him further impetus to propose creation of the agency later that year.

So yes, Nixon deserves some credit, but Congress acted first, and public opinion forced his hand.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 11:55 AM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


At some point in my, maybe late-teens/early twenties, I hit some kind of block where I was just grossed out by drinking milk. I think once I moved out of my parents' house I never bought it for myself. Mrs. Bastard and the teenagers around here go through the cow-squeezin's so quickly that we still never bother to check the expiration date at the store. I tried a sip about seven years ago just to see if my taste had changed, and no. Gross white liquid blech.

Still love cheese though, and will cook with cream. Milk as a beverage though? Nope.

Cottage cheese seems like some horrid perversion of ricotta cheese, which is luscious.
posted by Cookiebastard at 11:56 AM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


You never outgrow your need for milk. Especially goat's milk. And goat cheese. Mmmmm.

Don't bring your lactose intolerant tummy to my dinner table unless you are able to contain your distain.
posted by mule98J at 12:04 PM on July 19, 2015


If that is what Nixon considered "lunch", I'd say most people around him knew of his deep psychological problems. Now I off to a dinner of 27 green skittles and 6 ounces of Mr. Pibb in a recycled jelly glass.
posted by Muncle at 12:08 PM on July 19, 2015 [6 favorites]


This is a great photo.

My Republican history teacher in high school deliberately spent a great deal of time lambasting JFK and Johnson so the semester would end before we could get to Nixon. Never forgave him for that.

I don't know my high-school history teacher's political persuasions—I suspect he's more radical than anyone gives him credit for, actually, given the sense of irony that guy's got on him—but we also did not get beyond the Vietnam War in history class, and we only spent a day and some bullet points on that. Last I checked, Missouri actually doesn't require the teaching of history beyond that point.

Where do kids in high school that you all know of get to in history class these days? Do they cover any of the 40 years of history since then? Or is that still relegated to a separate "current events" class?
posted by limeonaire at 12:17 PM on July 19, 2015


The last item in my bucket list is to go piss on Westmoreland's grave.

Westmoreland's grandson -- he [the grandson] was and is a pretty rad dude -- went to the same small semi-rural local elementary school as I did, which is why Westmoreland ended up in the school library talking to my 6th-grade class sometime in the late 90s. It was weird and unsettling, even to my 11-year-old self. He ended up ranting a bit about how "we didn't actually lose the war" and had to be kind of calmed down by his daughter -- my buddy's mother -- whose motivations for organizing his visit I don't quite understand. But yeah: I learned about cognitive dissonance and tortured rationalizations of terrible shit, in person, from General Westmoreland. (In retrospect, I think I also learned about dementia on the same occasion, but I'm not certain.) So at least the guy definitely produced one person who defaults to Obstinate Skepticism whenever some duly-elected asshole starts to condescendingly explain the necessity of bombing some folks.

I kind of like cottage cheese, but tinned pineapples and milk are both gross.
posted by busted_crayons at 12:20 PM on July 19, 2015 [12 favorites]


Cottage cheese seems like some horrid perversion of ricotta cheese, which is luscious.

My mom doesn't like ricotta, that means that I grew up eating lasagne made with cottage cheese.
posted by peeedro at 12:25 PM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I don't know if I'm lactose intolerant or if I just sort of fell out of love with milk - I used to drink it all the time as a kid, and I love cheese and yoghurt. I try a sip at my folk's place now an then as they buy ultra-primo local dairy cows-are-given-sun-hats milk, but it's still kind of gross.

Place makes good eggnog though.
posted by the uncomplicated soups of my childhood at 12:29 PM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Pineapple+milk would seem like a recipe for gastric distress.

And yeah, raised in Michigan, really didn't spend much time on the Vietnam era of later (nor did my youngest sister graduated in 2009). I think the honors history class got a bit farther. May be recent history is more prone to people arguing over it, so doesn't wind up in a required curriculum.

Peeedro, my dad does that! Or, if lazy, just tosses it in with his spaghetti and cold, jarred pasta sauce. Thank god Mom usually cooked.
posted by ghost phoneme at 12:34 PM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Where do kids in high school that you all know of get to in history class these days? Do they cover any of the 40 years of history since then? Or is that still relegated to a separate "current events" class?

I think it varies quite a bit, although maybe less now. I was in a US public high school at the very beginning of the "NCLB Era", so I'd imagine the variety (i.e. the degree to which what you're taught depends on the interests and decisions of individual teachers) has declined. We studied the Vietnam war in US history class my junior year, in a fair amount of depth, although that was the last thing we covered before the year ended. I think I got my copy of the Howard Zinn magnum opus from my history teacher that year.

Any US history we studied before that was extremely spotty, though. Considerable time was devoted to the subject, but they tended to focus on Founding Mythology in unnecessarily great detail and then peter out around 1900.
posted by busted_crayons at 12:35 PM on July 19, 2015


I believe 11th grade (US) was the year they split history and economics into two separate semesters, and our teacher was very good at both. She was even-handed with both parties, highlighting what each had done well and pointing the finger at some very nefarious stuff.

I had spent my entire school life knowing that I was going to be drafted and sent to Vietnam when I graduated.
posted by halfbuckaroo at 12:49 PM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


I love that busted crayons writes a paragraph about General Westmoreland visiting an elementary school to talk to kids about the Vietnam War and finishes the comment with a statement about cottage cheese, tinned pineapples and milk and in this thread it is not at all a non-sequitur.
This is a great thread.
posted by zoinks at 1:26 PM on July 19, 2015 [10 favorites]


I started eating cottage cheese with breakfast sometime in the last 6 months when I learned of its nutritional value. No fruit. No black pepper. No frills. Sure it was a little hard to choke down the first time, but I got used to it. I also drink three small tumblers of milk with breakfast and lunch whenever I go to the dining facility on post. I'm 25.

I had a friend growing up who used to drink milk with every meal. I was used to drinking sweet tea with dinner so it seemed real weird but now I'm quite the milk drinker myself.
posted by A Bad Catholic at 1:36 PM on July 19, 2015


Another interesting picture: Nixon and Robocop.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 1:48 PM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


the One True Food: bread, butter, and DeRuijter chocolate sprinkles

I'm grinding out a Whole 30 right now, and this is definitely going to be my first meal after I finish.

(lasagna with cottage cheese, not so much)

(also U.S. Grant is a seriously underrated president, or at the very least a president who tried to think outside the box and was far ahead of his time on race, and anyone classifying him with racist crapface Buchanan is just so wrong)
posted by sallybrown at 2:22 PM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Was it a thing then, and is it still a thing anywhere now, to get a glass of milk with a meal?

I never order milk at restaurants, but I drink milk with meals at home all the time. Full fat, of course, because blue is a fine color for the Metafilter background but has no business with milk. Milk goes well with some foods and not with others, just like any other beverage option.
posted by Dip Flash at 2:39 PM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


the saddest of parts is that Nixon ate the napkin and wiped his ass with the pineapple #fact
posted by Foci for Analysis at 2:41 PM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


he was probably the least racist of any president before Carter

I haven't found this to be true at all. I am willing to have my mind changed but everything that I have read/heard/watched belies your statement.
posted by futz at 2:59 PM on July 19, 2015


I actually dig cottage cheese and eat it a hell of a lot. With pineapple, even better. The glass of milk, I could take it or leave it.

I vastly prefer thinking about the mild pleasantness of that photo of Nixon's last lunch in the White House over thinking about the levels of pretzel-twisting that need to go into smarmy faux-ironic apologias for the crimes and abuses of the Nixon Administration, not to mention the wholly unironic wholesale smashing of the American political system that he set in motion and that we're still paying for almost 45 years later and will still probably be paying for 45 years from now.
posted by blucevalo at 3:26 PM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Pineapple+milk would seem like a recipe for gastric distress.

We call it a fart contest, but we are both 9 at heart.
posted by Mr. Yuck at 3:58 PM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Mary Crow Dog/Brave Bird made it clear in her memoirs that the Native Americans in SD didn't think much of George McGovern...and I saw a newspaper clipping in a Taos museum that described how the NAs there were given more rights under Nixon's watch.
posted by brujita at 4:17 PM on July 19, 2015


Cottage cheese is delicious--I buy the fancy Whole Foods kind, and usually eat it with a dash of hot sauce mixed in.

In fact, I kind of want to curl up with a big bowl of cottage cheese and a Rick Perlstein book right now.
posted by box at 4:40 PM on July 19, 2015


Milk makes me phlegmatic like nobody's business and it's not pleasant but if that didn't happen I would drink a litre a day just like when I was a kid. My dad still drinks milk with meals but in fairness he did grow up as a dairy farmer.
posted by GuyZero at 4:44 PM on July 19, 2015


> I haven't found this to be true at all. I am willing to have my mind changed but everything that I have read/heard/watched belies your statement.

I don't know if you've read Caro's bio, but he makes it very clear that Johnson started out with the typical racial views of a white Texan of his generation but had his mind and values changed by a lot of things, and by the time he reached the presidency he genuinely hated the way colored people were treated and was determined to do something about it—he wanted that to be his legacy.
posted by languagehat at 4:48 PM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


I had a friend in grade school who was raised by her German grandmother, who made cottage cheese with salt and vinegar as an after school snack. I enjoyed it that way much more than how it was usually served but never want it enough to buy it as an adult. I love cheese and whole yogurt without flavorings added, but can't deal with milk anymore unless it's used for cooking. BTW, it's not hard to find whole yogurt where I live, except for Wal-Mart, which only carries low- and non-fat varieties. Canned fruit was always a mistake. It's very much of the time during which the photo was taken. It was all so beige and horrible, like dejah420 said. The food was a weird hodgepodge of healthy and gross or defiantly unhealthy, often at the same time, and way too much dairy for a lot of people. It was a strange time to grow up in the US.

Nixon was undoubtedly a monster, but his Quaker background made him more human in many ways than a lot of modern politicians. Even so, he appointed Elvis Presley an honorary federal narcotics agent in 1970, mostly because Elvis wouldn't take no for an answer, and it was good PR. Think about that for a moment. Apparently, Elvis liked to collect badges from honorary police appointments from various departments around the country and brought them with him when he traveled. He gave Nixon a gun as a gift, a commemorative Colt .45 from WWII, which made the Secret Service a bit jumpy. Elvis reportedly liked peanut butter, banana and bacon sandwiches, but really who doesn't.
posted by krinklyfig at 4:51 PM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I had to shut down the will-we-won't-we dating dance with a guy when I saw him drink a big glass of milk with his sushi lunch.

Well at that point there was only one sane choice to make.
posted by krinklyfig at 4:54 PM on July 19, 2015


Nixon's "Quaker background" was California Quaker - fundamentalist Christians, often Republicans, not at all like the Quakers of the East.
posted by Peach at 5:46 PM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Showed up for the Nixon trivia, and got a scoop of cottage cheese for my troubles.
posted by datawrangler at 7:06 PM on July 19, 2015


Deliberately killing civilians on a mass scale in a country that we weren't even at war with is some nasty shit, even when compared to the other nasty.

150,000 people at the upper estimates, and this doesn't take into account the 1.5-3 million butchered by the Khmer Rouge, which the bombing helped to bring to power [PDF]. They did not have strong public support beforehand.

A new documentary about the destruction of Cambodia's pop music scene under the Khmer Rouge, "Don't Think I've Forgotten: Cambodia's Lost Rock n' Roll" includes first-hand testimony from survivors of the US bombings. The scale and callousness of them are shocking.
posted by ryanshepard at 7:37 PM on July 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


In my neck of the woods, you can buy brand name packages of courage cheese with the pineapple pre-mixed in. Makes for a great breakfast on the run.
posted by Popular Ethics at 9:04 PM on July 19, 2015


Courage cheese. Maybe if we called it that it would be more appealing.
posted by nubs at 9:12 PM on July 19, 2015 [7 favorites]


>Milk makes me phlegmatic like nobody's business

Huh--apparently this is a myth.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 9:17 PM on July 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


This really is the weirdest thread I've read on here in a while.
posted by nevercalm at 9:39 PM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


"Fancy Whole Foods" kind. Meh. I have not found cottage cheese anywhere that is decent these days, not even at Whole Foods. I love it. Intensely. Unfortunately every variety I can find (except the brand that is "dry curd") has guar gum or other thickener added, presumably to thicken up the thin milk-water added to the curds or it's not full fat. I can eat the stuff with guar gum but it has a funny mouth feel which sometimes if I'm grumpy I notice and sours me on my cottage cheese, which is not a comfortable feeling. I don't like being grumpy about my food. I never did like black pepper on it though. Fruit on the side is okay. I can basically eat one of those tubs that's like 16 oz in a sitting and should probably get over my guar gum problem because it really is a (relatively) cheap and nutritious lunch with some veggies and bread.

Also, when I was pregnant I drank a lot of milk. I'd drink more now but I am super sensitive to when it starts to smell "off" from the fridge which ruins my enjoyment. When I was a kid, my sister and I were drinking like three gallons a week. I still get single cartons now and again at lunch though and sometimes order it at restaurants. So all y'all with "what is this quaint milk drinking" stuff can get off my lawn. Nixon resigned before I was born.

And I love some of the stories everyone is telling here. Weird thread or no.
posted by R343L at 9:51 PM on July 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


I also drink a glass of milk with every meal. Ok it's actually irish cream but that's pretty much the same.
posted by um at 10:40 PM on July 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Of all of the emotions stirred at reading this thread, the one that comes strongest to my mind is the humanity of the man upon the death of his wife. It broke him. He loved her, trusted her, she was the constant in his life. She was his rock. I recall seeing an image in which Nixon could not hide his grief, in which he wept uncontrollably, in which he wept as any man would weep upon the death of his dearest friend, his trusted partner, his loving wife.
posted by dancestoblue at 12:46 AM on July 20, 2015 [3 favorites]


If there was a justice, if there was a balance, if there was an accounting, then upon his death Nixon would have faced -- and would be facing, and sharing viscerally -- the deep, unrelenting, agonizing grief he has caused millions of people.
posted by dancestoblue at 12:57 AM on July 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


busted_crayons: tinned pineapples and milk are both gross.

I'd have assumed the President! of the United! States! of America! would have gotten fresh pineapple. If not him, then who?
posted by Too-Ticky at 2:03 AM on July 20, 2015


I'd have assumed the President! of the United! States! of America! would have gotten fresh pineapple. If not him, then who?

Nixon resigned because of the White House cuisine. Watergate was ginned up by the notoriously sensitive and polite G. Gordon Liddy to avoid offending the kitchen staff.
posted by busted_crayons at 3:30 AM on July 20, 2015 [3 favorites]


Needs more Stout.

I see what you did there.

Consider me educated about the continued existence of milk-as-mealtime-beverage. I still can't think of it being on a menu at any cafe that I've ever been to though, except as a "baby chino".

I'd have assumed the President! of the United! States! of America! would have gotten fresh pineapple. If not him, then who?

Maybe he liked the super sweetness of canned pineapple to cut the flavour of cottage cheese.

Re Nutella -did anyone else see/remember the ad that claimed Nutella was healthy because it has "less fat than peanut butter, and less sugar than jam?" Totally healthy! I can never have nutella in the house because of my tendency to eat it by the spoonful.
posted by pianissimo at 4:13 AM on July 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


Wow, what a thread.

busted_crayons' Westmoreland visit / culinary critique has already made my week. Anything beyond this is just icing. No, Nutella! I meant Nutella!
posted by Molesome at 5:30 AM on July 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


I remember eating a bang-up lunch at the Contemporary Resort at Walt Disney World, and wondering what they served him before his "I Am Not a Crook" speech.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 6:47 AM on July 20, 2015


About 20 years ago I knew someone who said they had never heard of cottage cheese... 'What are you eating?" "A cottage cheese and pineapple roll" "What's cottage cheese?"

I'm still shocked by this to this day. I'm heard of people having sheltered upbringings, a non-adventurous diet etc but bloody hell...
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:17 AM on July 20, 2015


Oh and a glass of milk is great if you have eaten any too hot that's got chili in it...contains casein that binds with capsaicin in the chili to cool down your mouth / sooth your stomach (learnt that from an Iain Banks novel)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:23 AM on July 20, 2015


> I'd have assumed the President! of the United! States! of America! would have gotten fresh pineapple. If not him, then who?

Believe it or not, fresh pineapple wasn't a thing back then, unless you lived in pineapple country. I don't think I saw it till I was a grown man. When I was a kid, I just assumed pineapples grew in round slices.
posted by languagehat at 7:27 AM on July 20, 2015 [6 favorites]


The picture reminded me of how very spartan our meals were much of the time back then.

I don't disagree with the larger point, but I wouldn't generalize too much from what one middle-aged / almost-elderly white anglo-saxon protestant man renowned for his boringness ate. Even in 1973, there were people having fiery curry for lunch, or hot tamales, or pierogi and kielbasa, or other delicious prey items. They just overwhelmingly weren't WASPs.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:49 AM on July 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


Oh and a glass of milk is great if you have eaten any too hot

*president nixon voice*: this cottage cheese is too spicy
posted by poffin boffin at 8:00 AM on July 20, 2015 [9 favorites]




Really, the only difference between that photo and the "light lunch" at the country club, diner, or cafeteria in the '70s is a nest of lettuce underneath and a cherry on top of the cottage cheese. Usually you could choose between cottage cheese or tuna salad.
posted by Lyn Never at 9:19 AM on July 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


You still see it on diner menus as "health salad"
posted by poffin boffin at 10:07 AM on July 20, 2015


Lyn Never: "Really, the only difference ... a cherry on top of the cottage cheese. "

Oh gods, yes...the cherry. Thank you. I had one misplaced bit of cognitive dissonance I couldn't shake out...it's the damn bright red, maraschino cherry that *should be* in the dead center of that cottage cheese. It was probably too spicy for our Dick. Well, if nothing else proves he was a monster; I mean...surely the fact that the staff hated him so much they wouldn't even give him a cherry, is undeniable evidence.
posted by dejah420 at 10:26 AM on July 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


Even in 1973, there were people having fiery curry for lunch, or hot tamales, or pierogi and kielbasa, or other delicious prey items.
And those meals didn't look as fancy as they do today (or as big), either.

But I agree, WASP food was disheartening, especially if you were poor. You haven't lived until you've had creamed dried chipped beef on white toast once a week, alternated with hot dogs and sometimes a big treat of hamburgers, and, for a big party when Dad's boss was coming over, an actual steak and a salad of iceberg lettuce with Russian dressing! Woohoo!
posted by Peach at 11:11 AM on July 20, 2015 [3 favorites]


Believe it or not, fresh pineapple wasn't a thing back then, unless you lived in pineapple country. I don't think I saw it till I was a grown man. When I was a kid, I just assumed pineapples grew in round slices.

I'm still under 40 and was raised on the canned pineapples that were a part of my parent's diet. The first time I encountered fresh pineapple was on a trip to Costa Rica when I was 16. They grow on trees down there! I ate it and ate it until the bromelain dissolved the top layers on skin on my tongue and roof of my mouth.
posted by peeedro at 11:58 AM on July 20, 2015


They grow on trees down there!

It's even weirder than that.
posted by Lyn Never at 3:29 PM on July 20, 2015 [3 favorites]


It's even weirder than that.

That is totally not real. Pineapples must land from outer space or something.
posted by latkes at 3:38 PM on July 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


dissolved the top layers on skin on my tongue and roof of my mouth

Born in the '80s, and I don't remember having fresh pineapple until highschool: well, as fresh as you can get from the Midwest, anyways. It is still world's better than canned, and I promptly ate until it hurt and then kept going. I do this yearly with homegrown tomatoes as well. I don't think this makes my dentist happy.
posted by ghost phoneme at 4:16 PM on July 20, 2015


Believe it or not, fresh pineapple wasn't a thing back then, unless you lived in pineapple country. I don't think I saw it till I was a grown man. When I was a kid, I just assumed pineapples grew in round slices.

I remember the first time I had ~*fresh*~ pineapple. We'd just hours before landed at Clark Air Base in the Philippines back in 1984, and there was a cantina where my mom parked me while she checked in with her CO that served it. I thought it was unbelievably luxe. I, too, sloughed off the outermost layer of my tongue and the roof of my mouth.
posted by Andrhia at 6:12 PM on July 20, 2015


I, too, sloughed off the outermost layer of my tongue and the roof of my mouth.

Wait...this is a real thing? Holy cow. I eat frozen pineapple on a daily basis, more or less, and I've never encountered this. Is it only when it's really fresh?
posted by AdamCSnider at 7:20 PM on July 20, 2015


If pineapple wasn't so delicious it would probably be considered a noxious weed.
posted by um at 9:16 PM on July 20, 2015


Lots of fresh pineapple in the 70s--California woohoo
posted by Joseph Gurl at 1:48 AM on July 21, 2015


Wait...this is a real thing? Holy cow. I eat frozen pineapple on a daily basis, more or less, and I've never encountered this. Is it only when it's really fresh?

Yeah. Bromelain is used as a meat tenderizer, too. So if you have a lot of super-fresh pineapple it helpfully digests your mouth for you. Good times!
posted by Andrhia at 5:22 AM on July 21, 2015


I don't really drink any milk, but I will eat ANY cultured milk product or cheesy thing. I love cottage cheese, and often have it for breakfast on a slice of brown or black bread, sprinkled with salt. A nice pancake-treat is thin pancakes wrapped around a mixture of sweetened cottage cheese and jam.

You used to be able to buy tubs of cottage cheese here, already mixed with stuff like pineapple or, best of all, chopped gherkins. So good!
posted by mythical anthropomorphic amphibian at 5:23 AM on July 21, 2015


"I remember reading Nero Wolfe stories and Archie Goodwin often ordering a glass of milk"

I think Archie explains it just once as having an ulcer--or at least, that was his excuse for not drinking alcohol at that time. I think he mentions the ulcer once or twice more.

I found it one of the really subtle elements of character-building that Stout did so well... the books are like candy for the brain but the world is so, very, thoroughly developed and mostly consistent. Mention a trait or occurence once, never bring it up again, but assume the audience still knows 10 books later (but it's not essential to the plot, so you don't *have* to know).

Also: Archie, infantile? Nero Wolfe hired Archie to be--effectively--his governess. Put up with tantrums, make Wolfe do his homework on time, make sure the household worked and everyone got their salary paid. Archie handled all of the emotional labor--but he got paid well, so that's nice.
posted by galadriel at 7:45 AM on July 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


(To be vaguely closer to topic: I drink milk with almost every meal. I'm trying to come to terms with the idea that I am probably a grownup.)
posted by galadriel at 7:55 AM on July 21, 2015


I have not found cottage cheese anywhere that is decent these days, not even at Whole Foods. I love it. Intensely. Unfortunately every variety I can find (except the brand that is "dry curd") has guar gum or other thickener added, presumably to thicken up the thin milk-water added to the curds or it's not full fat.

Daisy brand, which is pretty common in my area in the Maryland/DC/VA orbit, is just cottage cheese without all the nonsense, and, for some reason, is usually cheaper than the fancypants versions loaded with gums and thickeners.
posted by sonascope at 8:54 AM on July 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yeah, this thread made me want cottage cheese and canned fruit cocktail. So wrong, but so good. Daisy brand is the cottage cheese I got. It's really good. I'd forgotten how much I liked it.
posted by dejah420 at 12:05 PM on July 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


I didn't have fresh pineapple till I was thirty. I was in the hospital and got talking to a custodian, who saw the canned pineapple on my tray and started waxing poetic about the fresh stuff she grew up with in South America.So, soon as I got out I went to the store and got the freshest pineapple you can get up North. Mind blown.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 2:32 PM on July 21, 2015


So I'm in Europe and I loooove cottage cheese.I can eat a whole tub with just a bit of herbal salt sprinkled over it.

But doesn't pineapple give dairy products a weird after taste? I really wouldn't want to mix the two.

Also, does anyone remember the Mad Men episode where Roger throws up infront of Nixon, and Nixon says something like, "ah, an oyster lunch, lucky you! I've been visiting Quakers all day and the only thing I had was cottage cheese."
Which gave me the impression that
1) Quakers eat cottage cheese
2) Nixon didn't like cottage cheese.
I'm confused. I may be misremembering.
posted by Omnomnom at 2:40 PM on July 21, 2015


Archie explains it just once as having an ulcer

Frank Nixon, Richard's father, suffered terribly all his adult life from bleeding ulcers.

A profile in Mother Jones blamed Frank's abuse for many of Richard's adult habits, such as an obsession with kicking, "a talent for ... survival without love", and an order to the White House wine waiter that, while guests were being served wine from $6 bottles, his be covertly poured from a $30 bottle wrapped in a strategic napkin.

The Daily Mail reports that milk as an ulcer treatment is now considered counterproductive:

Many people with ulcers are advised to drink milk because it is alkaline and is thought to help neutralise stomach acid. However, as far back as the mid-Seventies, researchers questioned the practice of drinking milk to relieve the pain of ulcers when they discovered that it actually increases stomach acid secretion.
posted by feral_goldfish at 1:45 PM on July 22, 2015 [3 favorites]




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