Thursday, September 9, 2010
Now that is one gutsy guy.
Shortly after the film premiered, Abe Vigoda was driving through Beverly Hills with his wife when a police officer pulled him over. Vigoda was flabbergasted because he hadn’t been speeding. When he pointed out to the police office that he hadn’t been speeding, the officer replied that it was against the law to drive too far under the speed limit. At first, Vigoda was astonished, and then rather alarmed when he noticed a very steely look on the cops face, and that the officer had unsnapped his holster and had taken out his pistol. At this point, a light bulb went on over Vigoda’s head. He said in his sweetest voice, officer did you recently see a movie called The Godfather? The officer said yes. Vigoda replied, “Officer, I was in that movie; I’m an actor. Now put you’re gun a way and quit scaring the bejesus out of us.”
Vigoda had fallen victim to a good cop’s instincts: ”Wait I’ve seen that face somewhere. He’s a really bad guy; I need to check this out.”
Several years later, in 1928, a Notre Dame team was down at half time against an undefeated Army team when Rockne told them that on his death bed, Gipp had said to him, “I’ve gotta go now Rock, its ok. I’m not afraid. But some day, when the team is up against it, and the breaks are beating the boys, I want you to tell them to go out there with all they’ve got and win one for the Gipper. I don’t know where I’ll be then, but I’ll know about it and I’ll be happy.” Whether the Gipp actually said that to Rockne we do not know. But what we do know is that the Notre Dame squad played their hearts out in the second half and won a hard fought game, 12-6. Even today, 70 years after Rockne’s death, to give an inspiring speech is known as doing a Knute Rockne.
Another major factor in the Knute Rockne legend was the 1940 Hollywood film: Knute Rockne, All American in which Edmond O’Brien portrayed Rockne and Ronald Reagan played the Gipper. That legend about “wining one for the Gipper” has proved so persistent that 40 years later, in the climax of the mad-cap comedy Airplane, Leslie Nielson inspires Robert Hayes to land the plane by telling him that years before, the fictitious dying Lieutenant George Zip told him to “Give it all he’s got and win one for the Zipper.”
Later, the manager said “I’m impressed with how you handled that. We’re going to be opening up a new store in the chain. Would you be interested in being a manager in the new store?” “That depends on where the store is located,” replied the clerk. “The store’s going to be in Columbus, Ohio.” “Columbus Ohio? Nothing comes out of Columbus but hookers and football players.”
…….silence….. dead sllence.
“I’ll have you know that my mother my daughter and my wife all come from Columbus, Ohio,” snorted the manager.
“Great!” said the clerk, “What positions do they play?”