Updated July 31, 2020 - 2:39 pm
When you’re the “Pianist to the Presidents” you forge some special friendships. You can receive some odd texts. Example: A former president sends a selfie of himself wearing a customized face mask.
As proof: Jimmy Carter sent Bellagio Petrossian Bar artist David Osborne such a photo Thursday afternoon. Osborne was getting ready to fly from Las Vegas to Oklahoma to receive his Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame Award. He is to be honored Saturday night at Coleman Hall in Miami, Oklahoma, his original hometown.
Carter has become a close friend of Osborne’s dating to their initial meeting in 1988 at a mall in Orlando, Florida, as Carter held a book signing and Osborne gave him an album he’d just recorded. The pianist has performed several events for Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter, most recently their dual birthday celebration in August.
Osborne had asked if Carter was feeling well and being safe. Then, Osborne texted yours truly with, “Wait ’til I show you Jimmy’s mask pic he just sent me.”
And there it was, a face cover of Carter’s toothy grin. Classic. Carter then gave Osborne permission to share the pic, which had not been posted anywhere as of Friday morning.
The Carters have endorsed masks during COVID-19. This month they posed together wearing a pair of masks printed with the Carter Center logo, the couple’s charity in Atlanta. The message in that photo: “PLEASE WEAR A MASK TO SAVE LIVES.” Jimmy Carter is 95; Rosalynn is 92.
John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His PodKats! podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at email@example.com. Follow @johnnykats on Twitter, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.