Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Even Angry Mickey Rooney has an Olympic Connection

It is troubling to see acting icon Mickey Rooney in the news with regards to elder abuse.

According to CNN and other sources, this week he testified before congress regarding his own struggles as an aging American.

I hate to admit it, but it reminds me of Dana Carvey's skit on SNL Weekend Update which sort of spoofed Rooney (well, Carvey DID spoof Rooney as well, in another favorite SNL skit).

Even Rooney has an Olympic connection via this blog, in that about 13 months ago, on the date of my flight to Vancouver to begin work at the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, I ran into Rooney and his younger escort (quite possibly the stepson who Rooney accuses of alleged elder abuse) in the T-Gate at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

In the afternoon ATL airport exchange with Rooney, the actor was in a wheelchair as the duo searched for their American Airlines connection (my flight that day was on United, which also departs from the T-Gates). Rooney appeared to me in good spirits, save the usual airport commute-inspired crankiness many endure when catching a connecting flight.

Rooney did not speak when I asked him two questions. His younger escort, a man in his 30s, was polite and explained it had been a long day for both of them. After wishing them well, I did notice they were in line to board as my own flight prepared to board, and that concluded the afternoon celebrity sighting.

Photo via by Associated Press photographer Alex Brandon

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