Keeping His Head on a Swivel

by Jonah Goldberg

From a little item in The New Yorker about Will Ferrell and how people shout lines at him when they see him:

When strangers run into Ferrell, they often frame the context as a kind of adult playdate. “What’s up?” he cried, to demonstrate, bugging his eyes and grinning wide. “It’s weird and flattering when people yell out quotes, but I usually just end up saying, ‘Yeah! . . . I said that!’ ” Ferrell’s comic trademark—the embarrassing pause, followed by a fervent re-statement of his position—both prompts and characterizes these fan interactions. “Because when someone yells ‘Shake and bake!’ ”—from “Talladega Nights”—“am I supposed to say ‘Shake and bake!’ back or . . . ? It used to be a lot of ‘You’re my boy, Blue!’ and ‘Stay classy, San Diego’ ”—from, respectively, “Old School” and “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.” “One woman yelled, ‘I want to be on you,’ which is a Ron Burgundy quote. I said, ‘Uh . . . thank you!’ When we were shooting ‘Everything Must Go’ in Arizona, I was driving back to base camp one day, and a girl pulls up and pops out of her sunroof and shouts, ‘Why are you so sweaty?’ And I earnestly answer, ‘Oh, I was riding a bike!’ And she says, ‘No, that’s a line from “Step Brothers”!’ And she was really mad at me.” 

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