Ah, St. Patrick's Day. The annual celebration of Irish cultural identity was back on Friday, with a generous helping of pandering from Irish-American elected officials across the political spectrum. But out of all the people who donned their green ties or cribbed an Irish accent, one ended up drawing more mockery and derision than any other ― you need only look at these reactions to Paul Ryan's St. Patrick's Day pint to see that both the beer community and Irish community on Twitter were appalled.
The epic gaffe came on Thursday, moments after Ryan ― the speaker of the House, currently preoccupied with pushing his wildly controversial and politically wounded health care bill ― gave some remarks at the annual Friends of Ireland luncheon. Ryan, whose family is of Irish heritage, decided to cap the appearance off by sipping on a pint of Guinness for the cameras. But it went so, so wrong.
Guinness calls for a very particular method of pouring so as to produce its iconic, creamy, thick head of foam. As can be seen in this video detailing the official pouring method, it's supposed to be poured into a branded Guinness glass at a 45 degree angle, filled to the harp logo, then left alone for just under 30 seconds for the head to settle. And finally, the pint is then carefully topped off, bringing the layer of thick foam to the very top of the glass, although never spilling over.
Ryan's, by comparison, wasn't even full, and the head looked depressingly flat. And yeah, people noticed.
1. The Most Disgraceful Pint Ever
First made up Irish proverbs. Now Paul Ryan and the most disgraceful pint of Guinness ever. pic.twitter.com/jVBk4RD9bn— Niamh O'Reilly 💭 (@thatniamh) March 16, 2017
2. The Head On That Guinness
3. Just Lost The Wisconsin Vote
That pint pour. Paul Ryan just lost the Wisconsin vote forever. pic.twitter.com/ol9Q90lYIm— Gina (@ginadivittorio) March 17, 2017
4. The Pint From Hell
5. That Feeling When
tfw you see Paul Ryan's pint of Guinness pic.twitter.com/iEpsmg2Dqs— The Memeon King (@FanSince09) March 16, 2017
6. A Pour Only Served
In three of four provinces, that's a pour only served to British informers & American tourists who request Neil Diamond from pub musicians. https://t.co/RTNxpIFwSk— David Simon (@AoDespair) March 16, 2017
7. Like A Women's Health Issue
He's holding it like it is a women's health issue. https://t.co/of6wFcDZKo— Elizabeth Everson (@Happyfirefly) March 16, 2017
8. Compare And Contrast
Compare and contrast.— ❄️Paul Jordan❄️ (@PJordan_FL) March 17, 2017
Obama's pint vs Paul Ryan's "pint" pic.twitter.com/As0Mdov3yw
9. This Isn't A Pint Of Guinness
This isn't a pint of Guinness. It's a sample of Paul Ryan's blood. pic.twitter.com/9Vg67Gub4w— Mallow News (@MallowNews) March 16, 2017
10. Looks All Natural To Me
11. In A Pub At 6 a.m.
This is definitely a man who’s never had to hold a Guinness while watching his Premier League team break his own heart in a pub at 6am. https://t.co/ZwITP4rbvD— Damien Sorresso (@EBADTWEET) March 16, 2017
This ought to be a good lesson for Ryan going forward: If you're going to sip on a Guinness at a public event, you have to be absolutely sure either that the person doing the pour both knows how and has your best interests at heart, or that you know how to do it yourself and are willing to show off your skills.
The decision to merely accept the limp, unimpressive, capital-S Sad pint and hoist it aloft in a celebration of Irish heritage, in other words, is one that must never be made.