I started listening to Rush Limbaugh regularly in March of 1991 when I went to work for AMP Inc. as a sales rep. I had a three state territory back then, so the job involved a lot of windshield time. And for the rest of my career, except for a seven year hiatus back at Eagle Sign, I would cover a multi-state territory for various companies, and my days on the road would almost always involve listening to Rush.
My favorite memories of Rush were from the early 90s. The most memorable thing was the 1992 presidential campaign. I remember pretty vividly driving down a particular road on the West side of Omaha laughing myself silly listening to the show. Rush was imitating Ross Perot being interviewed by Larry King (he was hilarious with that routine) and all the while this absurd version of “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” was playing in the background.
In those days he frequently did themed news updates. For example, he would do an Animal Rights Update which would be kicked off by Andy Williams’ “Born Free”– but with a gunfire sound track added to it. Then, of course, there were the magnificent parodies done by Paul Shanklin that were played regularly. Rush’s show wasn’t just a place for conservatives to listen to political dialog that we liked, it was a place to be entertained, to laugh, and, yes, frequently to learn something.
A lot of people have been eloquently writing about who Rush was, the incredible impact he had on both the media and politics, and his keen insight into things. It’s all true. But I’m thinking about something else, and perhaps I’m being a bit selfish.
I’m the kind of guy that doesn’t care much for change. Nothing makes me happier than to be in a comfortable routine. For most of three decades, Rush was happy part of my work routine. It’s tough to think about that coming to an end.
For a lot of us road warriors, Rush was an unseen companion in our vehicles. A familiar voice that made the many miles and many hours go by more quickly, and the occasional loneliness we feel just a bit more bearable.
So, thank you for everything, Rush! I know you’ll be missed for a lot of reasons.
But I’ll miss you the most the next time I hit the road. It won’t be the same.