Sunday, January 7, 2007

Kissing Betty Ford

Aside from Grace Coolidge, Betty Ford was the hottest First Lady. Not only that, she could mix a mean daiquiri. She was also the only First Lady I've ever kissed. So far, anyway.

Mr. and Mrs. Ford came to Durango in the summer of 1981, when I was working as a $3.50/hour radio producer at KIUP (AM 930, "Playing for You"). (No, I didn't write that great tagline, but I made several clever ads for Durango Travel Service, including one in which I did the voice of Robin and uttered the memorable line, "Holy travel carriers, Batman.")

But I digress.

The Fords were co-owners of the station, and while they were in town they took all the employees to the Bar-D Chuckwagon, north of Durango, for an outdoor supper and show. I sat a few feet down, on the same long bench. At the end of the show we all said our goodbyes. I shook Mr. Ford's hand, and then hugged Mrs. Ford and kissed her on the cheek.

Afterwards I thought, hmm, was that inappropriate to kiss the First Lady? I didn't know the protocol. No Secret Serviceman intervened, alas.

My impression was that they were genuinely nice people. And I'm truly sorry about the daiquiri joke above.

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