Perry is the first graduate of Texas A & M to govern Texas. When he was a freshman, in 1968, the student body looked much like him: white, male, determinedly rural.... At A & M, Perry ran the winning campaign of his friend John Sharp for student-body president. In response, Sharp got his friend elected one of the campus’s five “yell leaders”—male cheerleaders. Perry considered being a yeller the higher office. A typical yell is: “Squads left! Squads right! / Farmers, farmers, we’re all right! / Load, ready, aim, fire, boom!” During tense moments in a football game, yellers grab their balls and shout, “Squeeze, Aggies!”I was inclined to disbelieve that ball-squeezing thing. But I Googled it. There are some strange American folk traditions, apparently. But... why is this in an article about Rick Perry? Why merge that image with him? There's some psychological manipulation going on here!
Note that there is an ongoing effort among the media elite to create an aversion to Rick Perry by making him seem hyper-masculine in a disgusting or inappropriate way. I'll be keeping an eye on this. If you see evidence of this phenomenon, let me know — in the comments here or by email.
ADDED: A reader emails:
Squeezing is only figurative, and the yell leaders do it when the football team is attempting to kick a field goal. Before the ball is snapped, they run down to the end zone and kneel down on one knee, abreast of one another with one hand over their crotch, waiting expectantly for the kick. The "squeeze" is a figurative gesture, nobody really squeezes. It's all done in good fun--a bombastic notion that self-induced pain would affect an outcome on the field. People in the stands do it also, even girls.