“Hold my beer” — as in, what a college kid might say before he attempts a magnificently stupid stunt — is a joke made for this era. It goes something like this: Two people — or brands, or organizations — are having a conversation. One of them has screwed something up. The other is about to. For example, the United States asking a post-Brexit United Kingdom to hold its beer before electing Donald Trump as president.
“Hold my beer” has held up for months, but on a week like this, when people keep doing incredibly stupid things, it is getting a real workout. First up, Pepsi and Nivea handing each other beers after the former released a tone-deaf ad featuring Kendall Jenner using a can of soda to de-escalate a situation with a police officer at a protest, just days after Nivea released an ad saying “white is purity.”
From there, United Airlines would — in the form of a zillion tweets — ask Pepsi to hold its beer, after videos surfaced of a passenger being violently dragged off a plane for refusing to give up his seat. Bonus points to the first person who modified the joke to be “hold my Pepsi,” instead of “hold my beer.” Negative points to everybody else who made that joke afterward.
And then today, the White House press secretary stepped up to the podium with a metaphorical beer in hand, and referred to concentration camps as “Holocaust centers,” claiming Hitler never stooped as low as Assad has in recent days in Syria. This beer (and/or Pepsi depending on the tweet), as noted by everyone with an active Twitter account and a pulse, was handed to United and Pepsi.
The joke is dead. Put the beer down, Anna Kendrick.
Alternatively — looking at you here United, Pepsi, and Sean Spicer — just hold onto it yourself and drink the damn beer. You’re probably going to need a drink anyway, the way this week is going.