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Cheryl Ladd provides angel of an interview

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LEHI — I never really watched "Charlie's Angels" on TV, except enough to know Cheryl Ladd played the part of Kris Munroe, she-sleuth extraordinaire. And that she was the little sister of Jill Munroe, played the previous season by Farrah Fawcett.

Other than that, I don't know anything at all about the show.

Except you can get the complete second season on DVD for $49.16 on Amazon.com. And that "Charlie's Angels" was originally to be named "The Alley Cats," then "Harry's Angels," before the final cut. And that Ladd wrestled an alligator in one installment.

Oh, and in Season 2, Episode 25, she went undercover at a nude beach.

OK, fine. I never missed an episode.

Are you happy?

In my career as a sports writer, I've interviewed many famous people. But most of them were athletes. I did occasionally see Kate Jackson — another ex-Angel — outside the locker room during the years the Jazz made the NBA Finals. But I didn't ask her any questions. Same thing when I saw Madonna, Dyan Cannon and Janet Jackson. It's not like I'm on the celebrity beat.

I also saw Bo Derek in the press room a year or so after the film "10" made her a sex symbol. But it was at a fight in Las Vegas and — call me a flaming chauvinist — I couldn't bring myself to ask a blue-eyed starlet about Ali vs. Holmes.

I guess I've lowered my standards.

If you could call interviewing someone whose poster was on the walls of thousands of teenage boys in 1977 "lowering."

Monday at the Champions' Challenge Pro-Am at Thanksgiving Point, I got five minutes with Ladd. No, she wasn't wearing a bikini. She was in black golf clothing, head to foot. Looked like any other striking, slender 54-year-old actress/golfer. But the main things I'll remember about meeting Cheryl Ladd are that (a) she was polite and accommodating and (b) I might have said something about "Arley's Changels."

Otherwise, I was as cool a mint julep.

Meanwhile, I learned a few things I didn't know. For instance, at her best she is a 14-handicap. Right now, she's an 18 or a 20 "but I'm on the comeback trail." She released a book this spring called "Token Chick: A Woman's Guide to Golfing with the Boys."

The book is a humorous look at often being the lone female celebrity in celebrity pro-am events, such as the one she attended Monday.

"Golf has been such a gift in my life, and I've enjoyed it so much and enjoyed lots of wonderful times on the golf course with my husband first, and then I got to play in all these celebrity tournaments," she said. "I'm often the only female celebrity in the tournament, hence the term 'Token Chick.' So it's been such a great, great gift in my life. I've enjoyed it so much."

When I asked about the book, rather than the episode in which she joined a football cheer squad, she said, "Thank you." At this point she directed her gray-green eyes at me and, well, I got a little flustered.

I don't recall interviewing Michael Jordan was ever this disconcerting.

The book, she said, is "doing just great. It was really fun because I love how people are reacting to it and laughing and enjoying it so much."

I learned that famous actresses can at times be more interesting and accommodating than famous golfers. Try stepping inside the ropes and asking Tiger Woods about his latest book.

I also found acting — even if it involves wrestling alligators — is a breeze compared to golf. "It's (golf) much tougher," she said.

"This I had no kind of natural ability, so it's really all work. But it's all joy when you hit a great shot."

Sort of delivering a great line on the first try.

She began golfing in the early '80s, as she put it, "out of the blue."

"First time I played I hit two halfway decent shots. I think I whiffed the ball about seven times the first time I teed it up, but I hit enough kind of halfway decent shots that I went, 'This is fun!'

"It wasn't just the reward but the fact that it was so difficult to do that it fascinated me, so I kept trying."

As for "Charlie's Angels," the former Kris Munroe said she doesn't watch any more. "Oh, I never sit and watch the whole episode. If I see it in glancing, I'll watch a couple of minutes of it."

Yeah, um . . . me too.


E-mail: rock@desnews.com