Comic Tells Pentagon Troops to ‘Git ‘er Done’
By Lisa Daniel
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Oct. 21, 2011 In his signature baseball cap and wearing a shirt with the sleeves cut off, the comedian known as Larry the Cable Guy gave a shout-out to the troops today while on location at the Pentagon to shoot an upcoming segment of his History Channel show, “Only in America.”
Comedian Daniel Lawrence Whitney -- known as Larry the Cable Guy -- steps up to the podium in the press briefing room during a Pentagon tour for an upcoming segment of his History Channel show, “Only in America,” Oct. 21, 2011. DOD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
“This is Larry the Cable Guy, and you’re gittin’ ‘er done watchin’ the Pentagon Channel,” the Nebraska pig farmer-turned-standup-comedian said. “And if you’re not, you’re a dag-gum communist!”
Larry, whose real name is Daniel Lawrence Whitney, brought his brand of rural, blue-collar humor to official Washington. Combing the Pentagon hallways in his “We Proudly Support the 2nd Amendment” sweatshirt and camouflage cap, he intertwined serious respect for the military and its members with the zany antics of his brand.
“I love ya!” he told service members in the Pentagon Channel taping. “Stay safe out there. We’re behind ya 110 percent, and always do this: Git ‘er done!”
And, he added, “Come see me when I got a show and, by golly, I’ll buy ya a beer.”
For military kids, Larry became Mater, his animated tow truck character from Disney-Pixar’s “Cars” movie.
“Whew-hoo! Boy, I’m happier than a tornader in a trailer park!” he shouted. “One of these days, we’re goin’ back down there with McQueen to Radiator Springs, and we’re gonna go backward drivin’, then we’re gonna do some tractor tippin.’”
The History Channel shoot was important to show viewers the inside workings of U.S. military headquarters, the comedian said. “It shows you how your tax dollars are being spent, and it makes you real proud,” he added. “A lot of people don’t know what they do here, and 24,000 people work here, and they’re all regular Americans just like you and me.”
That perspective is what he’s trying to provide in bringing his show to the Pentagon, he said. “I consider myself about as regular as anybody else,” he explained. “So, to actually get in and be able to ask questions -- and some of them are stupid questions -- but they’re questions that I want to know, and hopefully other people will want to know.”
The service members who work in the Pentagon are no different from other Americans, he noted.
“You know, when they’re not in there with their uniforms on, they’re just like you and me,” he said. “They’re just regular folks making a living and trying to live the American dream. It’s cool seeing them in there at their best. It makes you proud as an American to know we have the greatest military in the world. And to get in there and see behind it and see the guts of it, and watch ’em work, makes you even prouder.”
Never out of character for long, the comedian gave his uncensored impressions of the Pentagon’s most critical areas, including the National Military Command Center.
“I have learned that you don’t pick stuff up in the war room and press buttons without the main man telling you to do it,” he said, "because when I hit some button and the windows fogged up, they made some announcement and I got shuffled out. I don’t know what happened, but I think I might have declared war on Canada.”
In the Pentagon press briefing room, Larry stepped up to the podium with cameras rolling . “And this is why we went into Canada,” he said. “They don’t clean up after themselves.”
“That’s probably not useful,” a Pentagon official commented.
The comedian said he was impressed with the dedication displayed by the Pentagon’s military and civilian workforce.
“I could see how focused they are,” he said.
The “Only in America” segment was taped as part of the show’s second season, which will begin in January, a History Channel crew member said.