Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Not my first charade

When I worked for U. S. Sen. Lloyd Bentsen, I was surprised that the local media treated me like a celebrity and ran stories when I came to town. Front page, sometimes.

The charade climaxed when organizers asked me to be a substitute speaker on the first annual legislative panel convened in Wharton, Texas. That's rice country near the Gulf coast. The event was, and still is, a big deal.

Although I have written speeches for others many years, I don't give speeches. Like many people, I freeze up. There is a serious disconnect between my brain and my mouth.

But I couldn't wriggle out of the request. I gave the speech. At least I think I did. When I sat down from the microphone, I had no idea how long I had talked nor what I had said. It was all a blur. But then the state senator seated next to me on the dais leaned over and whispered, "Well said."

I thought about that and, in my delirium, concluded he was right. It was a good speech. I'm the toughest little S.O.B. in town. I should do this more often. Maybe a new career.

Next up was State Representative Joe Hubenak, a self-confessed member of the Bohemian Mafia and proud of it. Joe blew smoke for 45 minutes in the most disjointed, rambling and awful speech I had ever heard.

When Joe finished, I heard the Senator murmur, "Well said."

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dear George,

Well said!

Best regards,

Ken Martin

Anonymous said...

George -- Hubenak was a politician from our neck of the woods. He died a couple of years ago from cancer, but remained active in the political arena until he just couldn't go any more. Those thick, black-rimmed glasses are etched in my memory banks. Denise

ArchGrafiX said...

I think you wrote that episode to console me, George. I am the same way in front of a crowd, although I would NEVER presume to gather the nards to present a speech to more than two people for more than two minutes. There is that serious disjoint between my brain and my mouth that you described. You are not alone...

-- Buddy

Anonymous said...

The late Joe Hubenak was incomprehensible in any
language. Bob Bush, a bright guy who served five
terms, once asked Joe if he spoke any other languages. Big fella 'fessed up, "Hell, yeah, but I'm not any better in any of them."

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