08/30/2012 01:15 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Tim Pawlenty vs. Andrew Zimmern: Is A Food TV Host's Job A Vacation?

Apparently, former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty thinks that being the host of a food show is more like a vacation than a job. At least that's what most reasonable people would assume from his decidedly flaccid joke about Bizarre Foods host Andrew Zimmern during last night's speech at the Republican National Convention.

From the transcript of Pawlenty's speech as prepared for delivery:

But you know, President Obama isn’t as bad as people say, he’s actually worse. The president takes more vacations than that guy on the Bizarre Foods show.

No one likes being told that their job is a vacation. Especially those who primarily travel for their work, like the host of a travel show. Zimmern's average week probably contains more flights, hours of work logged and public appearances than... well -- Tim Pawlenty's?

Zimmern took to his blog this morning, with what we consider to be a pretty evenly tempered, calm response to the comment.

Hey, thanks Tim Pawlenty! I loved the shout out. It would have been nice if you mentioned my name since we have known each other pretty well for a dozen or so years, but I understand you’re being respectful and not making it personal.

President Obama and I share a lot of passion and commitment to same issues, one of which is work ethic. I only take off a few days per month, I think I had 4 in August and only have 2 or 3 days off in September. And on those days I was sneaking work calls while my wife wasn’t looking and returning messages on my phone ’til the wee hours.

UPDATE 8/31: Zimmern has posted a video that expresses his thoughts and he's not pleased. Zimmern says that he's "puzzled" by the comment, as he works 300 days a year, and he thinks Obama is the hardest working man in the world. "We both work really, really hard," he says, referring to himself and Obama.


What do you think?



Andrew Zimmern's Most Bizarre American Foods