Ted Cruz on his ‘arguing boots’ and (not) carrying a tune

Olivier Knox
Yahoo News
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, left, gets into an elevator following a vote on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013. President Barack Obama is making plans to talk with Republican lawmakers at the White House in the coming days as pressure builds on both sides to resolve their deadlock over the federal debt limit and the partial government shutdown. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Maybe it’s no surprise that Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, likes to wear his black ostrich “arguing boots” around Washington. That’s one of the things readers learn in People magazine’s gentle profile of the conservative who may have done more than anyone in Congress to force a government shutdown.

More surprising? He’s been in not one but two productions of “The Sound of Music.” First in seventh grade, as conflicted Nazi youth member Rolfe. Then in high school, as Max Detweiler, who gets the von Trapps to perform at the Salzburg Music Festival, effectively paving the way for the family’s escape.

“Rolfe was really terrible,” Cruz told People. “I cannot carry a tune to save my life."

The profile, on newsstands Friday, softens the sometimes hard edges of a senator who is often the target of sharp (and anonymous) criticism from his fellow congressional Republicans. It’s the kind of rehabilitation he’ll find useful if inside-the-Beltway rumors are true and he’s thinking about running for president.

He said he saw “The Butler” and found it “delightful.”

With most Washington museums and monuments closed because of the shutdown, the Cruz family headed to privately run Mount Vernon, where they “picked a whole bunch of apples and had a lot of fun," Cruz said.

And “he never misses date night,” his wife, Heidi, tells the magazine.

"Date night"? That was also a feature of rowdy Republican Gov. (and potential 2016 candidate) Chris Christie's People profile in late May.