Clint Eastwood said he accomplished what he wanted to with last week's address at the Republican National Convention, which left many viewers scratching the heads.
But, to be fair, my office chair says he liked it.
Eastwood told the Carmel Pine Cone this week that he was aiming to tell people that Mitt Romney would do a better job of running the country than President Obama. He also said the whole talking-to-the-empty-chair thing was spontaneous.
"I had three points I wanted to make," Eastwood said. "That not everybody in Hollywood is on the left, that Obama has broken a lot of the promises he made when he took office, and that the people should feel free to get rid of any politician who's not doing a good job," he said. "But I didn't make up my mind exactly what I was going to say until I said it."
Eastwood's appearance Thursday was kept secret until the last minute. The Pine Cone reported Romney's campaign aides asked for details about what Eastwood would say to the convention.
"They vett most of the people, but I told them, 'You can't do that with me, because I don't know what I'm going to say,'" Eastwood said.
A lot of people still don't know what he wanted to say.
By the way, I say that with all due respect. I don't care if Clint Eastwood is 82. I'm still afraid of him.
Despite being mayor of Carmel in the 80s, Eastwood said he hasn't given a lot of speeches and admitted "I really don't know
"It was supposed to be a contrast with all the scripted speeches, because I'm Joe Citizen," Eastwood said. "I'm a movie maker, but I have the same feelings as the average guy out there."
Eastwood has said he is liberal on social issues like gay marriage and abortion, but has strong conservative opinions about the national debt.
"Even people on the liberal side are starting to worry about going off a fiscal cliff," Eastwood said.
Eastwood allegedly only started mapping out what he'd say after a quick nap in his hotel room a few blocks from the convention site. "I got to the convention site just 15 or 20 minutes before I was scheduled to go on," he said. "That was fine, because everything was very well organized."
He told the Carmel newspaper the idea for the chair routine came as he was waiting to go on.
"There was a stool there, and some fella kept asking me if I wanted to sit down," Eastwood said. "When I saw the stool sitting there, it gave me the idea. I'll just put the stool out there and I'll talk to Mr. Obama and ask him why he didn't keep all of the promises he made to everybody."
He asked a stagehand to take the chair onstage
"The guy said, 'You mean you want it at the podium?' and I said, 'No, just put it right there next to it.'"
He said he's aware his presentation was "very unorthodox," but that was his intent from the beginning, even if it appeared haphazard.
"They've got this crazy actor who's 82 years old up there in a suit," he said. "I was a mayor, and they're probably thinking I know how to give a speech, but even when I was mayor I never gave speeches. I gave talks."
Eastwood wasn't aware of the very mixed reaction to his speech. He said Romney and running mate Paul Ryan came backstage to thank him.
"They were very enthusiastic, and we were all laughing," Eastwood said.
They weren't the only ones.