What does "Trees the right height mean"?

When speaking in Michigan several months ago, Gov. Romney said, among other things, that in Michigan, “the trees are the right height” and the crowd chuckled. Why does that statement resonate with conservatives in Michigan? Is it some local expression or something?

It just means that at that point in time, the Romneybot’s circuitry was amiss.:smiley:

I don’t know but the first thing I thought of when he said that was the line from the old Harry Nilsson song ‘The Most Beautiful World in the World’

Your mountains when you’re mad
Your rivers when your sad
And those deep blue seas
I love you for your snow
Your deserts down below
I love the way you wear your trees
The most beautiful world in the world

I had heard that it didn’t resonate with anyone in particular: do you have a cite that it does? (I’m genuinely interested and not snarking.) Rather, it was perceived as an “out of touch” moment where he tried to connect and failed, even in his home state.

I’m not sure why, it’s just as substantive as a local sports team reference. I have similar similar feelings about the waterfalls, hills, humidity level, and air pressure in Upstate New York, which feel right to me having grown up near them. I could see myself making a statement like that if I were to run for office there.

Yeah, I don’t think it’s got any particular meaning other than “I grew up here and so this is the place that looks right to me.”

He’s done it a bit more than once.

It means he’s not comfortable speaking extemporaneously with “real people”.

Maybe “resonate” was the wrong word. In the linked video, some people in the crowd seemed to chuckle when he made the trees remark.

I thought that maybe he was referencing some local folklore or expression. I was born and grew up in Austin, TX, where it has been more than 100F for the past week. Were I speaking to people there, I don’t know that I would say “It doesn’t seem that hot to me!” It isn’t unusually hot, but it’s still pretty darned hot out there.

“Trees the right height” just seems like such a weird way to say “I’m from around here.” Referencing your boyhood trips to the local sports stadium or iconic restaurant is a better way. In Austin, I would say “I remember many great afternoons at Memorial Stadium watching Darryell Royal’s Longhorns, watching Star Trek: The Motion Picture at the old Americana Theater, and taking dates to Amy’s Ice Cream.” Trees don’t figure much into it.

I thought he was trying to be funny in a folksy way.

The right height for what?

What would be a wrong height for a tree?

That’s the joke, son.

It’s Mitt channelling his inner Conehead. “This vicinity appears to be favorable to me…the dominant vegatative lifeforms appear to be of the proper vertical dimension…”

There is a fine line being chuckling at at laughing at.

It didn’t, duh. He was talking about trees. It resinated.

I’ve lived most of my life in eastern Kentucky, where Justified is mostly set. They get way more right about rural KY than they get wrong in terms of sets, clothes, accents, etc., but when they do outdoor scenes (especially with the hills in the backdrop) it’s obvious to me that they’re not shooting here. The best explanation I can come up with is “the trees are wrong”.

I think that’s more or less what Romney was getting at.

Much like Lake Wobegon, “where all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and all the children are above average.

I think he was simply saying that he was used to trees of that height. It was like being at home, after he was out somewhere in the country where the trees were huge, or tiny. It was a completely innocuous comment. The problem was that it was a really really weird way of saying it.

I can say that it absolutely gave me the willies. Down in Southern Georgia, where my Mother’s family is from, if somebody starts talking about looking for a “A rope of the right length, and a tree of the right height . . .” that would be a relly good time to get the heck out of there. And if you see anyone around who looks like they might be vulnerable, for heaven’s sake give them a ride!

Yep. Not that mysterious really.

This was the first thing that came to mind. I thought “why, does he want to hang somebody?”

I’m an Obama supporter. I live in Kansas, and I did a family road trip from here to New York and back last month. We passed through Michigan, coming from Chicago, and guess what…the trees in Michigan really DID impress me! Coming from the west, something about reaching a certain level of annual rainfall as you enter that state…anyway, I just had to laugh, because I suddenly had some idea of what Mitt had been trying to say. I dislike the man’s policies (this year’s policies, anyway!), but I have to say, with the “trees” comment, let’s give the man a break.