That Senator in the Headlights Look

30 Apr

This afternoon, my brother sent a picture of my nephew with Lamar Alexander, two-time governor and current U.S. senator from Tennessee. Alexander has been a major part of this state’s political scene since the 1970s and ran in the presidential primary in the 1990s. In short, he has long been one of the most powerful politicians in Tennessee.Lamar Alexander

This post is not about Alexander’s political career or about my nephew having his picture made with him. It is about a night that my friends and I had a “run in” with him.

Several years ago, we were driving to Knoxville to watch the University of Tennessee play basketball. My friend Jeff was driving, which is always a little adventurous. He was the one driving when we encountered “The Terror on the Plateau“.

Anyway, we were running late and pulled into the parking lot a few minutes before the game was going to begin. Jeff was whipping through the aisles trying to find a parking place. He rounded a corner at what felt like a blazing speed when his headlights fell upon a man walking from his car. The man turned with that “deer in the headlights” look and raised his hands for protection. Honestly, he looked like the one-armed man in The Fugitive.One Armed Man

Jeff slammed on his brakes and skidded to a stop. The man stood there. We sat there. That’s when I said, ” Jeff, you almost ran over Senator Lamar Alexander.”

When the shock wore off, the senator walked away as fast as possible. We found a parking spot and made it to our seats, where we could see Alexander sitting across the court. A few minutes before the game was over, we noticed that he had left. We assumed that he wanted to get out of there before that madman got back behind the wheel.

Thinking back on that night, I have often wondered how history would have been changed if Jeff had plowed into a senator.

6 Responses to “That Senator in the Headlights Look”

  1. javaj240 April 30, 2013 at 04:50 #

    Very funny! This would have been a great “Brush with Greatness” segment on the old NBC “Letterman” show!

    • Rick April 30, 2013 at 04:51 #

      It’s the closest I will ever get to the halls of power.

  2. Carl D'Agostino April 30, 2013 at 10:57 #

    Perhaps he can devise a way to run over the entire house and senate. Now that’s what I call community service.

    • Rick April 30, 2013 at 14:28 #

      We just need to line them up in a row.

  3. sittingpugs April 30, 2013 at 21:46 #

    I just read the terror on the plateau post — my goodness, disaster movie indeed!

    Do you recall how the senator was dressed? It might’ve been doubly funny if he were in quasi-incognito with a young person who, as far as the press can tell, is not part of his staff or extended family.

    And if there was a stuffed llama with a hidden pouch filled with rose-colored granules of undetermined origins.

    • Rick May 1, 2013 at 00:30 #

      Ha. He was alone and dressed the way you think a senator would be dressed when going to a basketball game. Khakis. Loafers. Sweater. The goofy look.

      The Terror on the Plateau was truly scary.

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