the White House is a tad bourgeois in an Epcot-y sort of way

NewAmerica

Banned
Mandarin
Does it mean "the White House is simply an unfledged bourgeois facing the uncertainty of his future"?

Thanks in advance
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I wasn’t surprised, by the way, when you said you’d spend half your time in New York. I mean, it’s New York! And the White House is a tad bourgeois in an Epcot-y sort of way.

-washingtonpost



Source
 
  • analeeh

    Senior Member
    English - UK
    Although I have to admit I'm only hazily familiar with Epcot, from the context:

    'I wasn’t surprised, by the way, when you said you’d spend half your time in New York. I mean, it’s New York! And the White House is a tad bourgeois in an Epcot-y sort of way. All that marble, those heavy drapes and selecting new china. < --- > And who needs a balcony overlooking the Mall when you’ve got a four-corner office in your tower overlooking Fifth Avenue?'

    what he's saying is that the White House is bourgeois (in this case I think he means conceited in a way Trump pretends not to be) in a way that reminds you of Epcot, the Disney World theme park - that is, it has Disney Castle-style architecture.


    < --- > Quotation reduced to comply with 4-sentence limit. Cagey, moderator
     
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    pob14

    Senior Member
    American English
    I think it's definition 3 of "bourgeois" in the WR dictionary:

    belonging to or characteristic of the middle class
    Epcot doesn't have a castle; it has reproductions of world landmarks (the Eiffel Tower, a Mexican pyramid) and is often thought of as just a little tacky - pretending to be upscale, but really not. I think the overall idea is that the White House would be a step down in class for the Trumps, who are used to living in Trump Tower in New York City.
     

    NewAmerica

    Banned
    Mandarin
    I think it's definition 3 of "bourgeois" in the WR dictionary:

    Epcot doesn't have a castle; it has reproductions of world landmarks (the Eiffel Tower, a Mexican pyramid) and is often thought of as just a little tacky - pretending to be upscale, but really not. I think the overall idea is that the White House would be a step down in class for the Trumps, who are used to living in Trump Tower in New York City.
    So Trump is a fledged bourgeois? It implies that Trump, by going to the White House, degenerates himself?
     

    pob14

    Senior Member
    American English
    I don't know what you mean by "fledged." No, the writer is suggesting that Trump considers the White House to be bourgeois. The last two sentences you quoted are intended to sound like they agree with Trump's decision to live primarily in New York.
     

    Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    It means that the interior design of the White House is slightly vulgar, like a Walt Disney invention. This has nothing to do with Trump, so far as I'm aware, unless he's already sent the decorators in.
     

    NewAmerica

    Banned
    Mandarin
    I don't know what you mean by "fledged." No, the writer is suggesting that Trump considers the White House to be bourgeois. The last two sentences you quoted are intended to sound like they agree with Trump's decision to live primarily in New York.
    By fledged, I meant "mature": Trump is a mature, successful bourgeois, while the White House is a tad/immature/unsuccessful bourgeois.

    And "that marble, those heavy drapes and selecting new china" describes the White House to be cheaper than that of Trump Tower?
     

    pob14

    Senior Member
    American English
    You might also keep in mind that the White House, like Epcot, is in fact a tourist attraction; according to one source, 100,000 people visit the White House in an average month.

    That aside, let me try a paraphrase of the entire part you quoted:

    "I understand why you would rather live in Trump Tower than the White House. After all, New York is so much better than Washington, D.C. And the White House isn't impressive enough to be worthy of a man as rich and important as yourself, but Trump Tower is."

    It's intended as a sarcastic criticism of Trump's attitude, thinking he is the smartest, most deserving person in the world.
     

    NewAmerica

    Banned
    Mandarin
    The meaning got clearer.

    Is "All that marble, those heavy drapes..." describing the White House? Or Trump Tower?
     

    fiercediva

    Senior Member
    American English
    The meaning got clearer.

    Is "All that marble, those heavy drapes..." describing the White House? Or Trump Tower?
    It's describing the White House. Trump Tower is all 1980s excess: mirrors, black and pink marble, metallic plating and indoor fountains.

    Trump's own penthouse is done up in over-the-top Louis XIV style, with gold fixtures, Greek statues and a gold-and-diamond front door.
     
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    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    Trump Tower is all 1980s excess: mirrors, black and pink marble, metallic plating and indoor fountains.

    Trump's own penthouse is done up in over-the-top Louis XIV style, with gold fixtures, Greek statues and a gold-and-diamond front door.
    :eek:

    The White House is a venerated historic building. Trump Tower is not nor is Disneyland. Nor is 'Gracelands', the home of Elvis Presley, all the epitome of mindless vulgarity. None of them have 'heritage'. The style of interior decor favoured by Trump is much the same as that favoured by people with more money than sense or taste, pop stars, dictators such as Saddam Hussein, and by absolute monarchs like Louis XIV.
     

    NewAmerica

    Banned
    Mandarin
    :eek:

    The White House is a venerated historic building. Trump Tower is not nor is Disneyland. Nor is 'Gracelands', the home of Elvis Presley, all the epitome of mindless vulgarity.
    I wonder what "all the epitome of mindless vulgarity" is referring to. It seems referring to Trump Tower, not the home of Elvis Presley.
     

    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    What do you mean? The phrase 'epitome of mindless vulgarity' seems to be one I used and I gave various additional examples, Trump Tower included.

    Reading through the thread, nobody seems to have mentioned that the quote is being heavily sarcastic. It suggests that Trump is such a narcissistic, ego-inflated, crude nit-wit that he scorns the White House and doesn't think it's anything like good enough for him. There's huge irony in the writer using the word bourgeois about the White House. He's mischievously projecting what Trump might say if he knew the word bourgeois. The contrast is with the well-known vulgarity of the nouveau-riche, those who have recently acquired wealth and social status.

    Or as Pob said
    I think the overall idea is that the White House would be a step down in class for the Trumps, who are used to living in Trump Tower in New York City.
     

    NewAmerica

    Banned
    Mandarin
    I think what made me confused is that Elvis Presley, King of rock and roll, was a pop star too. (See HG's description: "The style of interior decor favoured by Trump is much the same as that favoured by people with more money than sense or taste, pop stars, dictators such as Saddam Hussein, and by absolute monarchs like Louis XIV.")

    PS. The typo in HG's post ("Trump Tower is not nor is Disneyland") maybe contributed to my misunderstanding.
     
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