As Texas Senator Ted Cruz's faces the ire of pretty much everyone for attempting to take a Mexican getaway as his state grapples with the aftermath of a deadly storm that has left several dead as millions remain without power, it's important to remember that Cruz is far more than just a politician deserting his people in a time of need. He's also a Grandpa Munster lookalike, the Zodiac Killer, and a certified dweeb, a trait that has far preceded his Political endeavors. Over the past several years, members of Cruz's family and former associates have come forward to give us some insight into the Senator's dopey early life, proving he's always been this way, to the detriment of those forced within his vicinity. From buying 100 cans of soup to hanging an oil painting of himself in his office, here are three reasons why Ted Cruz is just a strange ass dude.
Move over, insurrectionist pickup artist -- Ted Cruz is coming for your gig with his certifiably creepy college seduction technique. Described by several of his former Princeton University classmates as "abrasive," "intense," "strident," "crank," and "arrogant," according to a 2017 report from The Daily Beast, the senator's most common descriptor was naturally "creepy," with some sharing stories of his strange wannabe 60's swinger approach to get laid. "Donning a paisley bathrobe," the future politician would go "walking to the opposite end of their dorm's hallway where the female students lived," the publication wrote of his awkward attempt at becoming an ivy league Casanova. Clearly, the ladies weren't too keen on his indecent pickup techniques.
"I would end up fielding the [girls'] complaints: 'Could you please keep your roommate out of our hallway?'" Cruz's Freshman year roommate and writer of two of The Hangover films, Craig Mazin, said of his unfortunate suitemate.
Weird roommate interactions aside, it seems the senator has a strange penchant for uh, canned soup? Shortly after he and Heidi returned from their honeymoon, the new Mrs. Cruz was in for a soupy, bulk-buying surprise that would put some of the scarily savvy shoppers of TLC's Extreme Couponers to shame. "When I married Ted, we got back from our honeymoon, and he went off to the store and came home by himself. And I was completely shocked to see that he arrived back at our apartment with literally 100 cans of Campbell's Chunky soup," Cruz, who worked in former President George W. Bush's Cabinet said of her apparent man-child of a husband's eating habits during a 2016 CNN town hall. "I never bought 100 of anything."
After stewing over Ted's soup hoard, Cruz staged a psuedo-intervention, having a "tough conversation" with her spouse. "'You don't buy 100 of anything, much less canned soup. We can't do this," she recalls telling Ted. "So the next morning, it was a weekend morning, I loaded up our car before he woke up and returned every single can." However, her scheme to rid her home of the canned, mass-produced staple, most often reserved for emergencies or, well, college students that can't cook, was quickly thwarted by checks notes marital gender norms? "when I got home, I called my mother just to make sure I'd done the right thing as a newlywed. And she emphatically disagreed with me. And so when Ted opened the pantry, I had to quickly tell him that I would go back and buy those cans again."
With his frat-boy eating habits backed by his mother-in-law, and clearly his blood pressure despite all that soupy sodium and, well, his general saltiness, Cruz's extreme love of soup has carried over into his political career, comprising a notable part of his diet while in Washington D.C. "When I'm away from the family, in Washington, D.C., my dinner is a can of soup. I have dozens in the pantry," he told US Weekly back in 2016.
So folks, if you too want to look like a 50/50 mix between Kevin from The Office and Mrs. Doubtfire, you know what to eat -- nothing but pre-packaged soup. Health!"
Allegedly taking the time to merely escort his wife and children to Mexico amid a catastrophic winter storm and a deadly pandemic isn't the only totally normal, not at all self-centered behavior the senator partakes in. His office decor of choice? An oil painting of himself, a strange quirk that caught the eye of GQ's Jason Zengerle, who wrote a profile on the future presidential candidate back in 2013. "What kept drawing my eye was a giant oil painting above the couch depicting Cruz as he delivered the first of his nine oral arguments before the Supreme Court," Zengerle wrote of his time in Cruz's office. "It is an unusual painting: From the artist's vantage point, we see three other courtroom artists, each also drawing Cruz -- so the painting actually features not one but four images of young Cruz before the bench."
Despite this display of exuberance once seemingly reserved for royalty or 17th-century nobility, the Senator allegedly claims the image helps him, erm, stay humble? "I was 32 years old," Cruz told the publication "It was abundantly clear we didn't have a prayer... And I've always enjoyed the fact that as I'm sitting at my desk, I'm looking at a giant painting of me getting my rear end whipped 9-0," he explained. "It is helpful, for keeping one grounded."
Remember folks, nothing says "I'm a down-to-earth man of the people!" like hanging oil portraits in your office, or, well, taking a tropical vacation as your state endures an unprecedented winter weather crisis.
So as Ted enjoys his first full day back in the U.S. following his embarrassing vacation blunder, facing the wrath of several Texans (except, perhaps for Snowflake, the family poodle he left behind), remember, acting strange and selfish is no new trend for the Senator. In other words, he's in for a tough time trying to cruz his way out of this gaffe.