Feb 22, 2021
Where Rush Got His BOMBAST!
The same people who whined for four years – “Trump doesn’t act Presidential (!!)” probably spent 32 years whining “Rush Limbaugh is a Blowhard…”. My Mama would have been one of those people.
They don’t GET IT. Which is OK… I don’t GET – How Oprah became a billionaire. Life is full of Imponderables.
I know EXACTLY Where Rush Got His BOMBAST. Lets rephrase that …
I know EXACTLY Where Rush developed his BOMBAST “Schtick”.
A Schtick is … a gimmick, comic routine, style of performance, etc. associated with a particular person. The term originated with Jewish comics in the Catskills in the 40s.
Two excellent examples of schticks would be Rodney Dangerfield and Don Rickles.
Were Rodney and Don the same off-stage as on-stage. Probably not … Was Rush Limbaugh a Bombastic Blowhard off-air? Not at all.
The Bombast part of Rush On-Air was actually a very small part of his show. But his catch phrases are what most people think of.
There were no “Man Caves” in 1981. There were basement rec rooms and dens … maybe a “lair”. Rush had a basement lair in his modest split-level in the KC suburb of Lenexa.
In the early 1980s there were two competing video cassette formats – VHS and Sony Betamax. Rush was “a Sony Betamax guy”. Alas, one of a rare few as it turned out.
He had the video cassette library you would expect of a recently-divorced 30 y/o guy making $15,000/year. All the James Bonds… Chuck Norris … Clint Eastwoods … Syl Stallones etc. … Nope, no porn. Whatta you think we were … Liberal Democrats?
But what he and I would watch together for hours was Professional Wrestling. Specifically Championship Wrestling From Georgia with Gordon Solie.
“Gordon Solie coming to you from The Great Peach State of Georgia.“
This was pre-Vince McMahon and WWF / WWE / RAW et al. I followed Wrestling from Gorgeous George in the late 50s-60s until the late 80s. The early 80s and Gordon Solie were – IMO – The Best of Times.
There are two types of Wrestling fans. (1) Those who thinks it’s all “Real” … and (2) those who think it is all Real Enjoyable Entertainment. Rush and I were the latter. It was a HOOT!
The main characters back then were Dusty Rhodes / “The American Dream” … The Funk Bros … “Handsome Harley” Race … The Von Erichs … Brute Bernard … Skull Murphy … a young “Nature Boy” Ric Fair… and a bunch of others. “Dusty” was our favorite but you could tell Ric Flair was destined for stardom.
There are two elements to Pro Westling … (1) what actually takes place “in the ring” and (2) the “ringside interviews”. It was the bombastic interviews that Rush and I loved … and imitated.
95% of Rush’s Bombast Schtick came directly – or indirectly – from watching those ringside wrestling interviews in his basement in the early 80s.
“half my brain”– “… talent on loan from GAWD” – “pencil-neck geek” as in Adam Schiff is a pencil-neck geek.. etc etc.
“pencil-neck geek” – “a neck like a stack o’ dimes”– was the trademark catch phrase of “Classy Freddie” Blaisse from the 70s. Freddie was a combo of Gorgeous George & Ric Flair.
Rush first used that one on-air in the early 90s giving credit – OF COURSE – to Freddie. Blassie heard about it and contacted Rush to thank him. “Classy Freddie” was “classy” and thrilled to be remembered.
If repeating Pro Wrestling catch-phrases is all it takes to become a National Icon … HellFire … I’d have ME a G-550 and a fleet of Maybachs.
Rush Limbaugh was a Whole Lot More than “Bombast” … Trust me. I know … I was there.
Fred Blassie – 2003 * Gordon Solie – 2000 * Dusty Rhodes – 2010
Rush – 2021
A Legend Never Dies
More of BobLee’s Rush Chronicles … Go Here!