What was that red thing next to Gov. Hickenlooper at the State of the State address?

What is going on here?

A Sriracha mystery during Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper's annual state of the state address. Jan. 12, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)state of the state; copolitics; politics; governor john hickenlooper; capitol; kevinjbeaty; colorado; denver; denverite;
A Sriracha mystery during Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper's annual state of the state address. Jan. 12, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite) state of the state; copolitics; politics; governor john hickenlooper; capitol; kevinjbeaty; colorado; denver; denverite;
What’s wrong with this picture? (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

A sharp observer might notice something odd here.

A Sriracha mystery during Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper's annual state of the state address. Jan. 12, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite) state of the state; copolitics; politics; governor john hickenlooper; capitol; kevinjbeaty; colorado; denver; denverite;
See it now? (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

OK, a little closer now for you. You’re right. There’s something familiar and spicy afoot during Governor John Hickenlooper’s State of the State address.

A Sriracha mystery during Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper's annual state of the state address. Jan. 12, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite) state of the state; copolitics; politics; governor john hickenlooper; capitol; kevinjbeaty; colorado; denver; denverite;
There it is. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Indeed, that is a pillow version of a bottle of Sriracha hot sauce nestled on the podium next to the governor’s elbow. But why? Could he find comfort in its soft chile presence?

Denverite asked if the governor could comment on the cushion, but he apparently wasn’t even aware it was there.

While everyone else (Erica included) was writing about the governor’s speech, this photographer did a little more snooping.

A Sriracha mystery during Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper's annual state of the state address. Jan. 12, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite) state of the state; copolitics; politics; governor john hickenlooper; capitol; kevinjbeaty; colorado; denver; denverite;
Crisanta Duran, champion of the hot sauce. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

As it happens, newly-elected Speaker of the House Crisanta Duran is a big fan of the stuff, and she’d received it as a gift earlier in the day. She left it on the podium, and so this cute little consumer good got to come along for the State of the State.

Kevin Beaty

Author: Kevin Beaty

Kevin Beaty is a media producer with experience in a variety of settings spanning Hollywood film sets to international backpack journalism expeditions. He is on a never-ending quest to meld artful imagery, functional design and intimate storytelling. His biggest struggle in any given moment is whether to shoot stills or video.