I have only attended one Fancy Farm picnic...way back in the 80's. I mostly remember how hot it was. That part of the legend of Fancy Farm is true. Other parts may get exaggerated sometimes. But my buddy Ranger and I busied ourselves that day with a psychological experiment in crowd control. Strategically placing ourselves toward the rear of the crowd, at approximately 2 and 10 o'clock, if you will, we looked for any spot in our candidate's speech to whoop and holler. It was amazing. A relatively lacklustre stump speech on healthcare was transformed into an apparent groundswell.
Footage of this year's picnic seemed to show an increase in political theater over those earlier days, but there's always been some of that so it's hard to tell.
This year, according to reports, after blaming Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear for not being close enough to Barack Obama (such that he allegedly chose the Kentucky Oaks over the president's visit to Ft Campbell) Republican gubernatorial candidate David Williams complained that Beshear was too close to the president.
Then came the funny part. According to the National Journal,
Williams attempted to tie Beshear to the president in his speech, blasting Democrats for not doing more to create jobs. That set off a heckler who interrupted Williams' speech by chanting through a megaphone: "Stop the war on workers." Williams gave back as good as he got.It's good to know that Williams has a sense of humor, even if it is Steve Martin's humor.
"Leave the guy alone," the candidate quipped to the audience. "I remember what it was like after I had my first beer; you'll be okay."
It's even better to know that David Williams recalls his first beer. I wonder when that was.
As I recall, there was a story of Williams, in the good ole days, sitting astride the cannon in the front yard of the Kappa Alpha Order house, at UK, on a Sunday morning, yelling at pledges to pick up all the trash (from the preceeding night's party), while he chugged a fresh one.
That might have been his first beer. But I doubt it.
As student body president of Cumberland County High School he successfully lobbied the school administration to reinstate the senior trip to Florida. But, never mind. They were all under age, so I bet they didn't drink.