RING! RING! RING!
“Hello. This is the Yarbrough Worldwide Media and Pest Control Company, located in Greater Garfield, Georgia. How may I direct your call?”
“This is Sen. Kelly Loeffler. Get Figby, the world-renowned image expert on the phone now!”
“Hello, senator. This is Figby. What can I do for you?”
“Figby, I need your help. The Senate race is just a few weeks off and I need to do something spectacular to excite and motivate the voters. Right now things are just too close to call. Your idea to have me ride a cow to work and back — uphill both ways — was brilliant. It showed folks that despite having more money than the combined Gross National Product of Zimbabwe and Costa Rica, I am at heart just a farm girl. But the cow and I think we have milked that stunt for all it is worth. Maybe it’s time to try something else.”
“I’ll be happy to help, senator, but don’t you have media experts to do that for you?”
“A lot of help they are, Figby. Gov. Kemp expects me to appeal to suburban females and yet my ‘experts’ are running commercials comparing me to Attila the Hun, who was known as ‘The Scourge of God,’ killed a lot of people and said ‘Where I have passed, the grass will never grow again.’ Not only do suburban women not relate to that kind of boorish behavior, I think farmers in south Georgia would have a bit of problem if I told them they could never grow grass again.”
“Do you have any ideas, senator?”
“Yes, I thought I might buy Stone Mountain, Figby. I can afford it. We could then protect the carving of those great Georgians carved on the side of the mountain. What do you think?”
“Well, senator. A nice thought but the monument is protected by state law and the figures on the side of the mountain aren’t from Georgia. Two are from Virginia and one grew up in Mississippi.”
“Oh, fiddle. I’m afraid I didn’t learn that stuff growing up in Illinois. We were on the other side in that war. I think we won.”
“By the way, senator, are those the same experts that accuse your main rival, Congressman Doug Collins, of representing criminals in court?”
“Absolutely! I think they nailed him on that one.”
“Did your experts tell you that U.S. Constitution guarantees every person facing criminal charges the right to an attorney? And in Georgia, the court appoints attorneys to represent defendants who cannot afford an attorney? And that Collins’ law firm was appointed by the court on four cases? And that Mr. Collins didn’t handle any of them himself?”
“Oh, dear. That’s news to me. I’m afraid I don’t know that much about poor people. My husband owns the New York Stock Exchange and we just don’t see that many poor people. Maybe I ought to get to know them better. Sell them some discounted stock or something.”
“I am sure they would appreciate that, senator. Any other ideas I can help you with?”
“As a matter of fact, yes. I need to get past that stupid Attila the Hun image with suburban women before it is too late. What do you think if I dressed up like June Cleaver on ‘Leave It to Beaver’ and made cookies and stuff?”
“Um, I think that would be a really bad idea. Those days are long gone.”
“OK, I can’t make cookies, anyway. But Figby, I’ve got to sharpen my image. On one hand, Doug Collins is a minister from Gainesville who served in Iraq and his daddy was a Georgia state trooper and Raphael Warnock talks about overcoming a hard-scrabble background in the projects of Savannah before becoming senior pastor at the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. And me? I’m just a rich girl from Bloomington, Illinois. How do I get common folks to relate to me?”
“Well, senator, I think we both know the answer to that one.”
“Oh, no! Not the cow again!”
“Yes, I am afraid so. You need to get back to being seen by voters riding your cow to and from work, uphill both ways.”
“With all due respect, Figby, I think I will stick with my Attila the Hun image. No way he would have ridden a cow when he was sacking Rome!” SLAM!
Dick Yarbrough is a longtime Georgia resident and former public relations executive. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org; at P.O. Box 725373, Atlanta, Georgia 31139 or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dickyarb.