So Long, Jerry

by

It comes as no surprise that 93 year old former president Gerald Ford passed away. He was in ill health for the last few years. Plus, he was 93.

When Agnew resigned in disgrace, and Nixon appointed Ford as Vice-President, I was over at the neighbor’s house. Their kid Dewayne and I were building a fort in the backyard or something. We walked in the house and Dewayne’s hillbilly mother shouted, “Ford’s the new Vice-President!”

“Who the hell is this Ford guy?’, I thought to myself. Although, I could have that moment confused with when Nixon resigned and Ford became President. Dewayne’s hillbilly mother very well could have shouted, “Ford’s the new President!”

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Get off my back. I was eight. Sorry I didn’t keep better notes.

All I do remember is that Dewayne gave me the scar on my right ear when we were rough-housing after watching a Japanese monster movie. War of the Gargantuas, as I recall.

In any event, that was my introduction to Gerald Ford. He seemed to be a lot friendlier on TV than Nixon. Although, I was upset that Rich Little had less to do. Rich was in his heyday with the Nixon impressions back then.

During the 1976 campaign, our house was supporting the Ford/Dole ticket. I got into a fight at school regarding that election. The other kids belonged to families that were going to vote for Jimmy Carter. Like Jerry Ford, I was beaten in a landslide. Or at least beaten between the slide and the swing set. They outnumbered me about five to one. Which not so coincidentally, turned out to accurately predict Carter’s margin of victory.

During the Nixon years, my Mom and I were driving somewhere in Los Angeles, as was the custom at the time. At a stoplight, I saw a group of bald women protesting something. I asked Mom what was up with the kooky bald chicks. She told me they were crazy Manson girls. I didn’t give it much thought, until a couple of years later when one of those bald chicks took a shot at Gerald Ford.

Jerry dodged two assassination attempts. Both attempts came in the same month. Both would be assassins were women. Being that this was during the apogee of the “Women’s Lib” movement, even as a kid it seemed kind of funny. Especially because they both failed. You girls need to leave the president killin’ to the menfolk.

Some things you may not have known about Gerald Ford:

**He was born Leslie Lynch King, Jr. His mother divorced and remarried when he was still an infant. He took his step-father’s name.

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**As part of the University of Michigan’s National Championship teams of 1932 and 1933 he played center. In 1934 he was voted Most Valuable Player. Does anyone know when the last time a center was voted MVP?

**Both the Detroit Lions and the Green Bay Packers offered him a spot on their rosters. Back then, a pro football player made $200 per game. He chose instead to go to Yale to be an assistant coach and law student. Today, who in their right mind would pass up an NFL paycheck in order to eat a bowl of shit in the White House?

**Was the last surviving member of the Warren Commission.

** Moved into a house on Evergreen Terrace across the street from one Homer J. Simpson after the previous owner left abruptly. Football, beer and nachos were enjoyed by all.

**Became a crime fighting superhero after gaining extraordinary powers thanks to a “hurricane-powered dose of radiation” received at a celebrity golf tournament. Along with former Presidents Carter, Reagan and Bush formed The X-Presidents.

Holy shit.  I almost forgot.  Possibly Ford’s greatest achievement outside of making ugly ties, ultra-wide lapels and WIN buttons hip, was to invite a Beatle to lunch.

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George Harrison was the first Beatle invited to the White House for lunch.  An awkward encounter ensued after Billy Preston complained about a hair in his soup.

And if you needed proof that the world isn’t fair, note that the only person in this picture still alive is Ravi Fucking Shankar.

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3 Responses to “So Long, Jerry”

  1. Ginger Says:

    That was a most educational post, Sarcastro. I remember when Ford became president. During that time, I also remember being surprised at my black friends’ reaction when I told them my dad wanted to vote for Wallace! I was only 8 at the time, too, so cut me some slack!

  2. Sarcastro Says:

    Ginger, my dad used to have a framed and autographed picture of George Wallace in the house for the express purpose of outraging his liberal friends.He also would claim that George was his Uncle.

  3. Mack Says:

    That explains so much. Apple/tree.

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