Thursday, August 31, 2006

RIP Pete's Dad

Glenn Ford passed away yesterday at age 90. Some of you younger folks might not know much about him, so please go read his obituary.

Mr. Ford was a fine actor and is on my personal list of 'Top 10 Cowboy & Western Actors of All Time'. Click on his name for a history and filmography.

This is personal for me. When I was a kid of about 10 to 12, I went to school with his son Peter for a couple of years. They lived about three blocks from me and I used to go over to his house in the afternoons. Pete's Mom, Eleanor Powell, would sometimes take us for ice cream. One of the world's best-ever dancers, she was a very sweet lady who could cuss like a sailor.

We played kinda rough. One time we had a dirt clod fight and I hit Pete in the head with one with a rock in it and opened his head up a little. He almost got me back some time later: I was crouched behind a low wall on his back porch and Pete was up on the roof of a shed across the yard. I had a BB gun and he had a bow and arrow. We traded shots for a while. At one point I looked up to see an arrow coming straight at right between my eyes! I ducked. I took a little better aim and shot at him again. He was in some foliage, but I think I got him in the arm. He never said.

I can trace a bad habit right to Glenn Ford's house: I smoked my first cigarette out by his swimming pool.

I got two things directly from Mr. Ford, and I still have both of them. He gave me a Pancho Villa peso and some good advice: never apologize when you have nothing to be sorry for.

I haven't seen those folks in fifty years, but I remember.

Adios, Godspeed, and Semper Fi, Mr. Ford.

Peter Ford has a website in honor of both his parents. Definitely worth a look.

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