Sandra Lee, the Semi-Homemade Food Network Star, recently received a subtle negging from the New York Times. Generally speaking, if they throw a terribly orangy picture of you up on the front page, brace. She, and her beau, future New York state governor Andrew Cuomo, should expect much more of this in the near future. This wasn't the first time the Times savaged Lee. [Who can forget Amanda Hesser's complete dismantling of "Lee's Buying Product from My Advertisers Is Time Saving and Good For You" logic in 2003.] And it won't be the last. Love is strong but Hell is other people and Albany, where righteous souls asphyxiate while the wicked flourish, is full of shit-stirrers eager to find a chink in Cuomo's careful armor. Lee might be that chink.
The first is that the lady likes to drink. She drinks on her show, all the time, and not water but weirdo strong cocktails like Banana's Foster Cocktails that sad people drink. If Eater had the budget for it, we'd hire a speech analyst to chart out her slurring from the opening shot to the last one, Lee lightly leaning on her tablescape to stay erect. It's not just for show.
When I interviewed her for Out magazine a while ago, Lady downed some serious Appletini during our interview. [She also ordered her hamburger well done but that is more a venal than carnal sin.] More seriously, and publicly, Lady likes to drink and drink she does and loudly do she drink. According to myriad first person accounts, Sandra Lee was shitfaced during her cocktail demo at the South Beach Wine and Food Festival. Sources have her wandering around in a cocktail haze, spraying patrons—who paid $125 to be there—with Pam.
So, say she comes into the State Legislature and they're all like, "Budgety budgety blah blah whatever," and she sprays them with Pam and then takes off her shirt like it's Mardi Gras on the Hudson and then there are her boobs—Great. Her boobs are great. Straight up.—it would be, to say the least, disruptive. On the other hand, it would probably be the day in Albany when shit got done. Ok, so maybe Lee's booze-fueled free-spiritedness is the paragon of Jacksonian democracy. There's still this other problem.
Clearly government—especially in New York—is taking a more active role in combating obesity. Part of the effort, one presumes, is to wean the public away from exactly the sort of saturated-fat filled industrial product that flows so freely from the advertising side of Lee's empire into its culino-editorial side. As Raphael pointed out a while back, in his previous incarnation at Eat Me Daily, her new magazine completely eradicates any divide between the two. Mothers of America, let your children eat Oneida! Lee's ad-pantry is filled with foods harmful if eaten. It's as if Michelle Obama's side gig was doing PR for Muammar al-Gaddafi.
Oh, there's also this video of Sandra Lee basically sucking off bigot fuck Pat Robertson.
I, for one, actually hope Sandrandrew stay together and not only because I think Sandandrew is a clever neologism. They're cute together and perfectly suited for each other. They're both ambitious political creatures and, you know, I think they do love each other. And besides, Albany couldn't get any more dysfunctional. Surely some low-cut blouses, a Kwanzaa cake, and Bananas Foster cocktails could only help.
· All Sandra Lee Coverage on Eater [-E-]