Guy Fieri is getting more bad press than Congress and/or Lindsay Lohan right now -- okay, maybe the same amount of rotten press, but that's still plenty -- all apparently inspired by the review that Pete Wells, restaurant critic for the New York Times, just gave Fieri's brand-new restaurant, Guy's American Kitchen & Bar.
But all these new haters are coming late to the game. I've been an anti-fan of Fieri since the late '90s.
And I have lots of reasons. Here are my top five for why I consider Guy Fieri a douche.
5. His style screams douchality.
Fieri has hair like space-alien pornstar pubes, and wears sunglasses clinging to the back of his head like a pineapple garnish grasping the rim of one of his garish cocktails, pinky rings, and gold hoop earrings that you usually see on female pirate role-players. His skin is burnt orange like a douche-a-loompa, he glistens with oily body secretions like a Honeybaked ham, and his wardrobe makes you think that Ed Hardy horked in his closet. In short, Guy Fieri -- who was actually born Guy Ramsay Ferry and not Guy Fee-ETTY (he legally changed it in 1995, presumably to sound cooler...scary failure) -- looks like a textbook model of a douche, and when he opens his hyperactive meathole, nothing but unnecessarily loud, obnoxious douchery comes out.
Guys like Fieri are the reason why Axe body spray was invented. Guys like him are the reason single women carry pepper spray and give out fake cell numbers to men at bars.
4. Guy's "Guy-isms" are off the douche chain.
I'm sure Fieri is massively popular with white, mid-twenties het males who routinely use outdated pseudo-ebonic phrases like "da bomb!" "Balls-DEEP!" and "Deez NUTS!" and have at least one friend named Kevie or B-Dawg. This stuff isn't endearing when Gwen Stefani does it, and since Fieri doesn't have dance moves, tits or an awesome clothing line to pitch, his douche-celeb rank falls somewhere under Gilbert Gottfried and above Joe Piscopo.
Who proclaims himself a "Kulinary Gansta," names dishes things like "Mac-Daddi-Roni Salad" and "Slamma Jamma Parmigiana," and utters phrases like "That's a hot frisbee of fun," "This insert anything is MONEY!, and "I'm driving the bus to Flavor Town"? Only Guy Fieri, a douchey, flame-decorated windsock fueled by mouth gas. I wish he'd drive the bus to Douchebagistan, and never, ever come back. 3. Apparently even his food is douchey.
GQ just voted Guy Fieri number eleven on its list of The Least Influential People of 2012. I am surprised he made it to the number eleven spot, especially after the Wells review of his Times Square restaurant, Guy's American Kitchen & Bar. I read the review, in all its well-written hilarity; highlights include "...a lunch-only sandwich of chopped soy-glazed pork with coleslaw and cucumbers -- called a Roasted Pork Bahn Mi, when it resembles that item about as much as you resemble Emily Dickinson" and "Why augment tortilla chips with fried lasagna noodles that taste like nothing except oil? Why not bury those chips under a properly hot and filling layer of melted cheese and jalapeños instead of dribbling them with thin needles of pepperoni and cold gray clots of ground turkey?"
But witty screed aside, the broader point of the review is that the restaurant has Guy Fieri's name all over it -- literally. And what are his customers paying for? His name? His douche-plunging Guy-isms, like Motley Que Ribs and Guy-talian Nachos? The entire menu gives off the whiff of being half a flip-flop-wearing step away from TGI Friday's. Fieri should have stayed at TGIFs, because at least that company doesn't try to hide the fact that it's a douche-farm.
2. He's not an American Joe/Jane representative -- he's a douche.
I hear and read Fieri defenders pribble on about how he's the proverbial white knight of normal, average, hard-working, unpretentious Midwestern diners who are oppressed and marginalized by hoity-toity East and West Coast chefs and their expensive, unapproachable, foreign-sounding dishes, and to that I say the geographic and class divides are largely apocryphal. Dining does not have to be a zero-sum experience, and the same folks who like wings, cheeseburgers and fries can be, and often are, the same people who like foie gras, cave-aged Brie and a nice croque monsieur from time to time. A croque monsieur is just a hot ham and cheese sandwich, and Fieri is just a douchemeyer because all he did to build his career was take comfort-food dishes that people already liked, slap his own made-up names on them, scream "Boo-YAH!" a couple of times and then wank his way to the bank. 1. Guy Fieri reminds me of the douchiest parts of the 1990s I'd rather forget.
I can understand why Guy Fieri was popular in the late '90s -- it was a time of shiny shirts, Night at the Roxbury clubbing, neon laser-colored melon martinis, men who wore seashell necklaces when they'd never been to Hawaii, Limp Bizkit and women exploring the idea that friends with bennies could work for them when they didn't want to buy the bull -- and his shee-it -- but get the meat stick for free. Guys like Guy Fieri were so my type in those days. Their brash, sweaty charms and shallow dude-brah jokes were aphrodisial: Their semi-regularly washed, tousled hair styles, flame-decorated running shoes and chunky gold guido jewelry earned my undivided attentions, and I could always spot them in a dimly-lit room because they had sparkly rhinestone dragons on their shirts.
But I grew up and moved on to live in the 2000s.
Watching Guy Fieri gives me PTSDD (post traumatic sick of douches disorder) and every time I hear him speak, I'm flashing back to some ghost-of-douches-past convo about how "last night was DOPE!" or "Imma get my grub on, brah!"
The beauty of the past is that after enough time has passed, we can all look back with fondness and cherish our memories without breaking into hives. We cannot ever have tender past recollections of Guy Fieri if he refuses to GTFA, though. His douchedom continues to live in the present, and haunt the omnivorous landscape like a sphincter-specter.
Shall I compare thee to a summer's eve, sir? For thou art a douche.