In the middle of his annual press conference designed to restore some standing as Russia's currency plummets, Vladimir Putin suffered a pretty spectacular fail.
He was asked by a journalist from Kirov about why Kvas, the area's mildly alcoholic drink, is not more widely stocked by supermarkets across Russia.
Putin joked the journalist seemed to be drunk himself - to laughter in the hall. But it turned out the journalist had actually survived two strokes.
To be fair, many journalists in the hall made the same mistake.
A drunk journalist asks Putin a question about Kvas, this is Russia.— Лёшенька (@MrPanfilove) December 18, 2014
Obviously drunk journalist asks Putin how he can get local kvas into supermarkets. "I see you've already partaken in your kvas" Putin cracks— Alec Luhn (@ASLuhn) December 18, 2014
And those are the ones who hadn't, as this article went live, deleted their tweets.
At least RT, the broadcaster accused of spouting pro-Kremlin propaganda, apologised on Twitter after live-tweeting the comment with apparent relish.
That went well then pic.twitter.com/SLynJc9uCj— Jules Mattsson (@julesmattsson) December 18, 2014
It is not the first time a president has embarrassed himself by opening his mouth without stopping to think whether the person he was speaking to was disabled.
In 2006, George W. Bush was asked a question about leaks from the CIA by a partially-blind reporter who had to wear sunglasses to protect his eyes from glare.
"Are you going to ask that question with shades on?" was Bush's reply.Suggest a correction