When in the US, Do as Americans Do
In the evening following the talks with the US President, Angela Merkel was spotted among the foodies in one of the Georgetown neighborhood's best-known eateries: J. Paul's.
A waiter at this "quintessential turn-of-the-century iconic American dining saloon" told the German TV Broadcaster N-TV that the famous guest ordered a burger with cheddar cheese and bacon, with a side of French fries. The European accent was added with Pinot Grigio.
Brazilian guests who had happened to stop in for dinner there couldn’t resist the temptation to ask the German Chancellor for a picture together, which was later posted on Twitter.
Angela Merkel's brewpub experience contrasted with the lavishing welcome French President Emmanuel Macron got several days earlier. He was treated with the first state dinner of Trump’s presidency, which had the first lady's seal of approval, as well as a 21-gun salute.
From Cuddles to Turning Eyes Off
This wasn’t the only difference between the state visits of the two EU powerhouses. Body language was subject to public scrutiny, as Trump’s “bromance” cuddling and handshakes with Emmanuel Macron differed strikingly from the meeting with Merkel.
Despite all the warm words and praises the heads of state offered each other, the exchange of looks and moves seemed to betray a vibe of uneasiness, according to social media commentators.
merkel doesn’t seem to be amused by Trump, at all. not digging this jerusalem story— Jake Sherman (@JakeSherman) 27 апреля 2018 г.
27 april President DJ Trump & Angela Merkel Body language & facial expression says it all. pic.twitter.com/hipDgghTss— missH (@HHelenaderksen) 28 апреля 2018 г.
Others expressed interest on what the Chancellor really thought.
Watching @realDonaldTrump shower himself with praise, I wish we could see a thought box over Merkel’s head.— David Axelrod (@davidaxelrod) 27 апреля 2018 г.
Some felt sorry for Merkel…
Watching the presser with Merkel and Trump, I'm struck w how defiant and angry his body language is… She's looks uncomfortable. #freemerkel— Barbara Townsend (@bltyoga) 27 апреля 2018 г.
…and detected hostility.
Looks like President Trump and Merkel hate each other's guts. Their press conference is like a debate between them. And the body language is pure hostility.— Paesur Biey…Stephen Miller 2024! (@PaesurBiey) 27 апреля 2018 г.
The exact opposite of France.
Screw Germany, a bunch of ingrates. Let them defe… https://t.co/TguW6N0LWM
So odd how Trump is praising Merkel with his body language learning as far away from her as he possibly could while still standing at the podium. 😨— KK Garrett (@SpazzyKK) 27 апреля 2018 г.
This falls in line with the words of body language experts, who decoded the subconscious choreography of the tete-a-tete.
Susan Constantine, an expert who provides training to the Department of Defense, told Yahoo Lifestyle that tensions and uneasiness between Trump and Merkel were easy to spot.
“Merkel looks smug — she knows she has the upper power in this moment — while Trump avoids eye contact and presses his lips together in frustration,” she told the media.
She further elaborates that “The President seems to be feeling a combination of disappointment, anger, and disgust. The corners of his mouth are turned down and he appears deep in thought. Merkel, on the other hand, acts flippant and dismissive by looking away from him.”
This analysis contrasts with all the good wording both Trump and Merkel gave during the press conference, where the US President called the long-time German leader a “very extraordinary woman.”
Before the talks, both of them also tried to break the ice in their own way. Donald Trump expressed his eager wish to sit with the German Chancellor in the White House once again on Twitter.
Look forward to meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany today. So much to discuss, so little time! It will be good for both of our great countries!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 27 апреля 2018 г.
Merkel’s Gift for Trump
Angela Merkel, who seems to know her ways with gifts for Commanders-in-Chief, who once presented Vladimir Putin his favorite beer, prepared a special treatment for Trump. The Chancellor presented him an old etched map of the German state Rhineland-Palatinate, where Trump’s ancestors are said to have come from.
Trump's grandparents on his father's side reportedly immigrated to the US from the German town of Kallstadt in 1905.