For Clooney, meeting presidents is a family thing

Washington: Actor George Clooney says he still gets a thrill when he meets with President Barack Obama — but to his father that kind of thing is old hat.

Clooney and Obama met on Tuesday to discuss ways of averting a potential civil war in Sudan. They`ve had similar meetings in the past. The first time, Clooney had a photo of him and the president enlarged and sent to his father, journalist Nick Clooney, saying, "Not bad for a kid from Kentucky."

Clooney told The Associated Press, "My Dad sent me back a picture of him in the Oval Office interviewing Gerald Ford and he`s like, you know, `Stand in line, pal!`"

Clooney seemed at home speaking with the president and other Washington officials this week, but said he has no interest in running for office himself.

He does, however, plan to continue traveling to Sudan, where he`s been on an "overloaded plane flying through thunderstorms in the middle of nowhere" and has been spat on by an old woman in a hut.

That was a good thing.

Clooney says it was done by the grandmother of a friend. She asked him to get on his knees and Clooney said, "She takes your hand and she spits in both of your hands and then she pulls you down and spits on your head." His friend told him it was a blessing.

"That`s actually the first time I`ve been spit on and it was a blessing!" Clooney said.

Bureau Report

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