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December 2, 2010

2012 Hopefuls: Rick Perry’s FED UP

I was drawn in by this photo from Rick Perry’s Flickr site for a number of reasons.

First of all, it was one of the few taken with African Americans on his book tour, this scene from  Ft. Worth.  Also, notice the intensity with which the Mom tries to “pull Perry into her family.” Look how intent she is about it, as if Perry was her husband — her real husband forced to the periphery (in the spot the politician would more likely be). I’m also interested in Perry’s expression. It’s the candidate’s glued-on smile accessible in a heartbeat for tens-of-thousand of snapshots (although I’m wondering if he’s just slightly flinching because of this woman’s pull. Maybe, maybe not.) And then, the expression of the daughter is priceless, maybe the body language of a kid with an all-too wannabe parent; one of those Moms far too concerned with appearances. And then, poor Mom. Someone else would seem at least a little pleased she got the scene she wanted. Instead, she only looks depressed, upset and frustrated, like the proximity to her fantasy only exposes the futility of it all.

Ultimately though, the photo is simply a look at the mundane, endless, grind-it-out, dog-and-pony routine that the political-celebrity goes through. In this case, the author of the government-bashing FED UP (far right), Palin’s-pal Perry is doing insta-book duty as 2012 comes into view and he emerges as a potential national player, just one-of-several opportunistic GOP governors doing some early positioning.

From Rick Perry Flickr site: November 11, 2010. FED UP book tour/Ft. Worth. Flickr Set here.

  • matt

    looks more like F U to me.

    also notice dummies, true crime, law.

    • letherebemoanin’

      ‘bartending’ -priceless!

  • black dog barking

    Just what we need, another Republican governor from Texas running for president. We’ll probably never totally get the stain out from the last one.

    There’s a post-modern Goldilocks affect beaming out from this image. To my eye this whole “go down to the bookstore and get a signed book and a pic” thing looks like Papa Bear’s idea, he looks comfortable, is leaning in to make sure he’s in frame. Maybe it’s good for business. Mama Bear is standing by her man and struggling to swallow some pretty serious reservations. Baby Bear’s presence looks coerced — “…do the bookstore and you don’t have to read the book”.

    Goldilocks is hard to read, probably thinking “what a creepy place, full of books“.

  • Books Alive

    Are we certain this is the mother? The woman looks like Eddie Bernice Johnson, except that she’s not smiling. Her district, TX-30, is near Fort Worth.

    • karen h.

      you might be right, it does look like hte congresswoman…sort of takes some of the fun out of it. Still, the teenager/pre-teen is hilarious.

    • Books Alive

      Found a map of TX-30. It’s a tiny blue island in a sea of red. I think the Congresswoman would be more likely to pose this way than a woman coming to a book signing. And following the drubbing Dems took, she wouldn’t be all that joyful. The Washington Post election results for House races report the previous 3 races: she won in ‘04 with 94%, ‘06 with 80.2%, ‘08 with 85.5% and 2010 with 75.8%. Obama won that district in ‘08 with 81.5%.

  • Marie

    The poor girl is bleeding typical early-teen “bershon” all over the place (which makes me giggle). “I can’t buh-leeve my parents dragged me to this thing. Ughhh! Let me just die now!”

    It could be that the woman put her arm around the candidate to normalize the grip she’s got on the young woman. She doesn’t look much happier to be there than the girl. Come to think of it, maybe her expression is from wrestling the young one into frame. She does look rather put upon.

    Perry’s expression is also a little strange. The upper half of his face looks wary and strained. The lower half looks a little smirky. “Doofus” is the word that comes to mind.

  • Michael Shaw

    I don’t think it’s the Congresswoman.  Here are some larger photos from her Flickr site.  The best comparison, expression-for-expression, though, is this picture of Eddie Bernice Johnson frowning.  The Congresswoman, I believe, has a rounder face than the woman in the Perry photo and the woman with Perry has more almond shaped eyes.  I could still be wrong, but I think it’s someone different.

  • Julia Grey

    The woman looks almost DEFIANT. As if to say, “Yes, I do mean to be here. You got a problem with that?”

    What would a Democratic congresswoman be doing at a Republican Governor’s political event? I also wonder why a man would bring his daughter to a book signing alone.

  • Marcia Yiapan

     How about a Perry-Pawlenty ticket? I could go for that.

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