Shop Talk: Jesse’s Girl

Jesse Ventura becomes an ordinary citizen again today, and one of his first acts as ex-governor of Minnesota may be to take his new Hummer H2 for a long, leisurely ride through the Land of 10,000 Lakes.

Last week, at his parking space at the state capitol in St. Paul, Ventura made an exhibi tion of his new wheels. “I live in Minnesota—I don’t want to get stuck,” he told a reporter from the St. Paul Pioneer Press, before cranking up Led Zeppelin on the stereo. The press didn’t ask many questions, perhaps recalling Ventura’s infamous claim that he once had his Lincoln Navigator reinforced “for running over reporters.” But Steve Allen, product man ager at Wally McCarthy’s Hummer in Roseville, Minn., who sold Ventura the vehicle, thinks he knows why the former wrestler chose the H2. “His buddy Arnold [Schwarz enegger] has like five of them. He can’t let Arnold show him up,” Allen tells Shoptalk.

Asked if he would like to see Ventura as Hummer’s national spokes man, Allen says, “I think that would be great. Absolutely fan tastic. Some people here in Minnesota don’t care for his politics, but don’t get me wrong, I voted for the guy. I think the rest of the world knows him as bodacious and outspoken. His thing is, ‘Get the hell out of my way. I’m Jesse.’ The Hummer fits that image.”

Matt Lindley, managing director at Hummer agency Modernista! in Boston, thinks it over and says simply, “Ventura for president.”