Vinay Menon: Why did the media swallow Hot Dog Straw Man? Because they know New York Yankees fans are bonkers

At Monday’s game, a New York Yankees fan went viral after allegedly turning his hot dog into a beer straw.
At Monday’s game, a New York Yankees fan went viral after allegedly turning his hot dog into a beer straw.

There are viral videos and there are publicity pranks.

You know what’s weird about this job? When I wake up in the morning, I have no clue what I’ll be writing about. All I know is it will be something utterly ridiculous or deeply troubling. You know? It’s either a column on Kim Kardashian allegedly violating drought mandates in Los Angeles by consuming an extra 232,000 gallons of water in June, or it’s a dire warning Russia is about to get even more barbaric in Ukraine, starting Wednesday.

Today, we are in the utterly ridiculous.

If you don’t want to lose brain cells, stop reading right now. Seriously.

At Monday’s New York Yankees game, a fan was filmed sipping beer out of a hot dog. As Fox News accurately framed the reaction: “Yankees Fan Drinks Beer Through Makeshift Hot Dog Straw, Divides Social Media.”

Yes. The video, which quickly burned up the internet, was as polarizing as Donald Trump treating top secret documents like they were cologne samples in a magazine. Some believe Hot Dog Straw Man is a mad genius, a da Vinci who may pioneer future gustatory innovation, such as garnishing margaritas with guacamole or licking bleachers. Others were just disgusted.

Me, I’m calling BS on this “viral video.”

The weird clip was shared by Nicolas Heller, a director and social media dude behind the Twitter account @NewYorkNico. As of Tuesday, his pinned tweet was a video of another nitrates-and-hops abomination, in which another Yankees fan is seen dipping his frankfurter into a lager.

In terms of proximity, camera angle and seat distance, that footage is suspiciously similar to this week’s video. Coincidence? Maybe. But it did make me put on my Kevin Donovan chapeau and take a closer look at the Hot Dog Straw Man Zapruder film now getting media hits around the world.

And it makes no sense to me.

First, why was the person even filming Hot Dog Straw Man before the wiener sucking incident? How did he or she know this guy in a tartan Yankees cap, chinos and Nikes was about to start Hoovering beer through a dog? I’ve been to many ball games. Never once have I started filming randos in the stands on the outside chance they’d suddenly demonstrate ventriloquism by having their chicken wings recite “Macbeth.” I’m just watching the game.

Second, let’s carefully analyze what Hot Dog Straw Man did to that poor hot dog. He impales each end with an actual straw. Why did he have a straw? Have you ever seen someone drink beer through a straw? That blue straw is a red flag. It seems like a prop. It suggests this is a ruse.

Third, at no point in the video does that straw go all the way through the hot dog. He just stabbed both ends! He never hollows out the hot dog to create a cylindrical cavity that would permit such meat imbibing. Try it for yourself.

Shiv both ends of a hot dog with a straw, only about an inch deep. Now stick that assaulted hot dog into a glass of lemonade and try to drink.

Do you feel refreshed? No. Your jaw aches because the middle part of that hot dog, still intact, has blocked any beverage uptake. It’s like trying to eat through your ear. So now your lips smell like Oscar Mayer and your mouth is parched. Which may explain why, in this “viral video,” the beer level in the plastic glass never dips. People, this is staged fake drinking!

Fourth, where was the bun that presumably came with the $15 dog? It’s not in the shot. Why did Hot Dog Straw Man leave his beer in the aisle, which is perfectly in the shot? And why does the clip suddenly end in silence?

Now, if @NewYorkNico can provide receipts and prove this is an authentic viral video, I will apologize, retract this column and, I don’t know, go to his house so we can both drink martinis out of a sirloin.

But you know the real reason “the media” was quick to believe this story? Because deep down, “the media” knows Yankees fans are bonkers. When our beloved Jays went to Yankee Stadium on the weekend, winning three out of four, the home crowd was booing its own first-place team. They even hissed at Aaron Judge, the league’s home-run leader. It’s madness. When Wayne Gretzky played in Edmonton, Oilers fans would have never booed him, even if the puck bounced off his head and he accidentally scored on his own net.

Edmonton fans understood greatness. They saw the big picture.

Yankees fans are the gold diggers of baseball. Oh, they are all sweet and supportive when things are going great as you hand-feed them peeled grapes on a superyacht. But as soon as you can’t make payments on the Lambo, it’s suddenly: “I expect more from you! Boo. BOO!”

There’s a reason the derisive raspberry that thunders from exasperated fans in a baseball stadium during rough times is known as the “Bronx cheer.” Hot Dog Straw Man, real or staged, is a great metaphor for the Yankee unfaithful.

All of these fans in New York should drink out of processed meat.

They are a disgrace to a beautiful game and a staged video can’t distract.

Vinay Menon is the Star’s pop culture columnist based in Toronto. Follow him on Twitter: @vinaymenon

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