You grow up a kid in Columbus, Ind., graduating from Columbus North and making your way through the world — first to Congress, then to serve as governor of your home state. It's a Capra-esque dream, the sort of thing that, once upon a time, would earn you a flattering profile in the Saturday Evening Post.
But then you fast-forward a few years and suddenly you're one of the most interesting people in the world, if only for a few hours. Congratulations. You are Gov. Mike Pence.
Speculation that Pence might be tapped to run alongside Donald Trump on the Republican ticket spurred a massive amount of interest in the governor on Google. For a few minutes, Pence attracted more Google interest than his potential running mate or any of the other possible VP picks. He attracted far more attention than the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee. He was the subject of more search interest than Chris Froome, who crashed his bike during the Tour de France and was one of the top global search terms on Thursday. Pence was even more interesting to Google users than Kim Kardashian, if you can imagine such a thing.
This is a level of attention that Pence has never before attracted on Google, dwarfing all of the previous spikes he'd seen on the search engine.
Let's say that Pence ends up not being the pick -- which appears to still be a possibility. If he isn't, then this was his moment. Those three hours from a little after noon Eastern to a little after 3 p.m. were the most the world had ever wanted to learn more about Mike Pence.
It's possible the peak could be topped: getting the nod, winning the race, serving as vice president — or more. The odds are good, though, that this is the high-water mark and the odds are also good that any further spikes probably wouldn't be linked to good news. The last time he saw a big spike was during the religious liberty debate from the spring of 2015. The old saying that all press is good press doesn't seem to apply to Google searches.
It's also not the case that Pence's peak is the best an Indianan has ever done. No matter how much we care about the vice president of the United States, the world is almost certainly always going to be more curious about David Letterman.