It’s been 10 years since Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly teamed up with Adam McKay to give us Talladega Nights, the best movie about NASCAR since Days of Thunder (which, oddly enough, John C. Reilly was also in).
While the Ballad of Ricky Bobby may have focused on Ricky’s (Will Ferrell) racetrack glory and his inevitable downfall, we can’t discount the other half of the shake and back duo. Ricky owed much of his success to Cal’s (John C. Reilly) sidekick skills. Yes, Cal did falter as a wingman and steal Bobby’s wife, but it all worked out in the end with Ricky getting an all new “red-hot smokin'” wife. Friendship triumphs over all.
Feel free to turn to these Cal Naughton Jr. quotes next time you find yourself answering the call to be somebody’s backup.
“We go together like cocaine and waffles.”
Being the ultimate wingman is about doing your best to be the perfect compliment to your partner. According to Cal, you should aim to be the Chinese food to their chocolate pudding, the ladies to their peanut butter, or cocaine to their waffles. So, Cal’s examples aren’t even close to being remotely good combinations — no biggie. The guy makes up for it with so much unbridled enthusiasm that his terrible pairings are easy to overlook.
“Don’t you stick that knife in your leg.”
A trusty wingman will always look out for your best interest. In Cal’s case, that means delivering some harsh truth to Ricky Bobby by telling him that his paralysis is all in his head. Of course, Ricky foolishly ignores the tough love and proceeds to plunge a knife into his leg, but at least Cal tried. Keep this Cal gem in mind next time your friend’s about to make a very grave mistake. Even if they ignore you at the time, they’ll likely thank you later — like I’m assuming Ricky Bobby did once the bleeding stopped.