Governors are called upon to speak so often, he said, that they all simply adjust and get better with practice.
His answer rings true. Almost everyone fears public speaking. It seems to be human nature. Some people are just more motivated to overcome the aversion than others.
What I would find tedious if I were Tomblin is constantly repeating myself. He will have to do that.
Every governor stocks his brain with lines that he uses over and over, modifying them to suit the occasion.
I'll be interested to see if Tomblin has his predecessor's affinity for hand shaking.
All politicians shake hands, but none more thoroughly than Manchin.
He starts as soon as he enters a room and moves workmanlike from person to person. His grip is firm, his greeting is warm - I've never seen anyone do it better.
Tomblin couldn't go wrong by adopting this style. I just hope he gets a flu shot.
If he is an introvert, Tomblin has a way of forging connections. Here's an example.
Years ago, when he was newly elected, I covered the Senate as a reporter.
In those days, reporters sat at a table in the front of the Senate chamber. We stared at the senators and they at us throughout the 60-day regular session. We also saw them in committee meetings. We certainly got to know each other.
On the last day of his first session, Tomblin presented each of the female reporters - I think there were three of us - with a beautiful red rose.
It was a sweet gesture, especially for someone who didn't seek much coverage. Not surprisingly in hindsight, he wasn't one of those who would stand to be recognized and launch into long monologues.
The fact that I remember that rose so many years later may be a clue about Tomblin's ability to interact with people.
He may be quiet, but I'm betting he will rise to the demands of his new job.
If he weren't good with people, he wouldn't have done so well at herding the preening cats in the Senate for a historic 15 years.
Friend is editor and publisher of the Daily Mail. She may be reached at 348-5124 or nan...@dailymail.com.