It was all going so well for Blair-boy Clegg, a-huffin' and a-puffin' around a stage that was clearly too big for him, wowing the crowds with talk of 'this is not a Tory tax cut', all without notes and only huge teleprompters to help him. He'd got them eating out of his hands. Then he went and spoilt it by delivering the final rousing rallying cry.
"I can't tell you every step on the road... but I can tell you where we're headed - government," he bellowed.
You could smell the fear as the audience descended into a deathly hush and grown men and women turned pale and looked visibly shaken.
Government? That's not what we do. All those decisions. That's not what we're here for. We are an issues party. We just protest. Government - our MPs will be lucky to keep their seats. We're going to need more than Vincent Cable if we are going to pull off that one.
It's a far cry from the rallying call by David Steel, who after a deal with the SDP could tell delegates at the Liberal Assembly to "go back to your constituencies and prepare for government." He had something to shout about.
With the current track record in elections, Clegg and the LibDems are just not in the same league.
Clegg's speech should be seen for what it is - just one unpopular man's posturing to stave of any grumbles of another change in leadership.
So if you are one of the lucky 250,000 who get an automated cold call from Clegg, ask him just which talent he plans to put in his government, what hard realistic policies they have and what they are actually going to do, when they get there.