Tuck, the tall, tough and tender actor Forrest Tucker, used to drive to work at Warner Brothers in his specialized golf cart (with a full bar tucked in). As F Troop’s wily Sergeant O’Rourke, along with Corporal Agarn played by Larry Storch, they bamboozled the naïve and true blue Captain Parmenter (Ken Berry, my dearie ex.) and ran Fort Courage for fun and profit. It was one of the great comedies. And Tuck did his own kind of entertaining, on the set and at his home. It was at the Tucker’s lovely Toluca Lake home that I first met Brooke Tucker.
Brooke is as vital as her dad. A short bit ago, Marilyn Tucker hosted a little reunion of us former F Troop wives along with Brooke and her daughter Sandra Cusick. It was a lovely and fun time. And it was time for me to learn about Brooke’s new passion, “AWGO.”
Like the razzle-dazzle daddy Tucker displayed as “The Music Man,” Brooke is a fervent founder of a new national movement. She uses the letters AWGO, standing for “as we grow older,” to remind us to be Sparkle Plenty and ready to rock ‘n’ roll. Or, what ever pace that pleases You, with a capitol Y.
She is mesmerizing when visualizing a gathering force of, well, older women. That somehow rang a bell with me. Then Brooke gave me a simple black bracelet with twinkling letters (AWGO, what else?).
Besides the graceful phrase, as we get older, it could be used in other cheery ways, like “AWGO fly a kite.” Or, “AWGO where you go.” We could keep on having fun with this, but then again, that is the object.
Growing older (which resonated with Brooke when a doctor mention this to her), should not be a time when we start folding our blanket. It’s time for a tea party or any kicky thing that feels good and enhances friendships and relationships. Brooke and her AWGO ideas are online, with a website , awgofun.com (that is being refined) and her blog.
A former actress, you may have seen her giving what for to Kate Jackson on Charlie’s Angels. Then her genius with miniatures kept her busy for many years. A real artist, who is now turning to the art of being happy for the older and chipper women of America. Just in time — Brooke, we can use you. She is an inspired hoot and it’s good to inhale her spirit. And “away we AWGO!”
Falling Down and Flying Up
As we grow older, falling is one of the worst things to do Just a week before we’re flying off to New York and Mt. Airy for Mayberry Days, I flew into the sidewalk while taking a walk for my health. Great good fortune, nothing was broken – and I was walking with Dorene Martin who had many tissues, put pressure on the icky places, guided me to her house and did the ER thing. Cleaned up, iced, clear of shock, Dorene walked me home (while I’m thinking AWGO). As we grow older, friends take care of us and keep us laughing. Anyway, my clarion cry is watch your step. A heads up, to look down (?) It’s doable. I did go to an emergency and got an “all clear.”
Now my bruises, in many of my formerly undesirable cushioned places, are amazing colors that drip down as the swelling goes down. One of my feet is blue. A part of my front looks like an eggplant. So, while healing and traveling I’ll be missing some good stuff in Toluca Lake. My darling and talented pal Stan Mazin is a long time member of Group Rep and directing Neil Simon’s Barefoot In The Park. I will be in town for the 50th Anniversary of the first CBS Magic show, The Magic Land of Allakazam, in which I was a tricky assistant. All sorts of stuff happened 50 years ago… We’ll talk.