Photo op gone bad smacks Elk Grove politician at Swimmin' Hole grand opening ceremonies

Call it bad luck, bad planning or just fate. Whatever you want to call it, every now and then people, and especially politicians find themselves feeling deflated after an inopportune image goes viral.

Perhaps the most infamous photo op gone bad for a politician came during the 1988 U. S. presidential election between George H.W. Bush and Michael Dukakis. In this photo op tank, such as it was, the Bush campaign acquired a funny picture of Dukakis riding a tank in Michigan and was able to create a virtual caricature of the Massachusett governor and Democratic nominee as inept, especially when it came to national security.


Then there are pictures, though not a photo op per se, where the subject gets caught in a funny moment that highlights their ineptness - a validation of sorts. George W. Bush found himself in one such moment in his second just as his popularity was waning.  

Bush was attending a summit in China and as he attempted to leave the room, he discovered the door was locked. The expression on his face was, well classic Bush. 

In a sense we can look back at the Bush years - we can't believe we are about to say this - with a bit of nostalgia. While he was without a doubt in the lower echelons of American presidents, he had a humorous charm in his ways as seen in this Buzzfeed Bush gif story.

Then there is the special case of Gerald Ford - the only person never elected to the presidency or vice presidency  - the congressman from Michigan whom LBJ said couldn't walk and chew gum at the same time. Even though Ford was an All American while playing football for the University of Michigan Wolverines (Go Blue!) and is considered the most athletic person to occupy the Oval Office, he suffered from a series of missteps, quite literally.

In this one, as Ford and wife Betty descend the stairs of Air Force One, the man from Grand Rapids stumbles on slick stairs. Let's just say whether you like him or not, Ford helped launch Chevy Chase's career who mercilessly mocked him on the first season of Saturday Night Live. 

All of this leads to our own little patch of America - Elk Grove, and specifically the city's newest amenity - The Swimmin' Hole.

With the opening of the Swimmin' Hole, in this day of the proliferation of mobile devices and social media, there were undoubtedly thousands of pictures snapped and photo ops to be had. The photo ops is especially true for elected officials from the Cosumnes Community Services District Board of Directors, and the Elk Grove City Council, all of whom were mugging for the camera.

A funny thing started happening though about mid-afternoon on Saturday, May 25. Photos began circulating via text and email.

It was a picture taken of an elected official - we'll spare this pol the indignity of using their name lest they show in Google searches for posterity - who might leave you scratching your head saying "what were they thinking." 

We cannot verify if this picture was shot at the Saturday public opening of the Swimmin' Hole or a reported private opening on Friday for local big shots.

Of course in the social media environment, it was not long before a meme circulated. Another person reportedly hashtagged the photos - we will not cite it here - but suffice it to say it had to do with a little blue pill failing.  Interestingly, our subject was the focal point of this meme.

The irony of this incident for the unfortunate elected is that unlike their four colleagues, this elected offical eschews social media. Nonetheless, there is no escaping social media and mobile devices.

So our advice for elected officials is this - if you are in a public setting, stay dignified and for goodness sake, never let your inflatable pink flamingo wrapped around your waist go limp.

Check that, limp or inflated, never let yourself be seen in public with an inflatable pink flamingo around your waist!

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Eye on Elk Grove said...

Is this another definition of a "pat down?"

Cowgirl Up said...

Looks like the rest of council didn't get the message on appropriate dress for this happy summertime occasion. Would this be our cool Vice Mayor "Dressed for Success" or a fashion faux pas set up by fellow council members? A word to Pat--Image counts when you are trying to bring "Blue Ribbon Fortune 500 Companies to our fair city --a dark suit or khakis -next time please. A concerned citizen of Elk Grove that can't stop laughing.

mike said...

Haha--he's dressed perfectly for the occasion! On the other hand, who wears slacks and a jacket to a pool?

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