On Letterman Monday night, President Obama joked about his daughters’ future dates who may be stressed out over having men with guns hanging around.
If he really wants to know about that, I can tell him what happened when Lynda Bird Johnson was working for me at McCalls, and I went to dinner at Trader Vic’s in New York with our company’s chairman of the board.
As we were being seated, the maitre d’ whispered, “The President’s daughter is going to be at the next table.”
Lynda had told me that afternoon about having dinner with the son of a campaign contributor. As they went past, I called her name softly, and she stopped, apparently happy to see a familiar face. I got up and we hugged.
Later, on the way out, the head of her Secret Service detail rose from a stool at the bar where he and another agent had been sitting, screened by a beaded curtain. He was shaking his head.
“I was pretty sure it was you,” he said, “but this other guy is new to the detail and he’s never seen you. When someone got up and grabbed Lynda Bird, he was ready to react.”
My dinner companion was thrilled. “You mean,” he whispered, “we could have been plugged?”
The Secret Service man was still shaking his head. “When somebody makes a move, we don’t have time for questions,” he said.
A tip for Malia and Sasha when they’re old enough to date: Stay out of restaurants with beaded curtains.
Cross-posted from my blog.