SOME REALAMERICAN CONFIDENCE
I was particularly interested in the Jan. 31 article misnamed How RussiaOutshoots Us. It was a very informative article but really didn't tell us howthey did outshoot us. They beat us with training and know-how. They beat us ata match that was termed "something we know about." They used Americanpistols and ammunition and did it. I wonder how many of them shot an Americanpistol before that meet? Yet they beat us at our specialty and with ourequipment at that. They just knew how to stay cool and shoot. Give a littlecredit where credit is due instead of making such silly excuses for our defeat.It's worse to be a poor loser and make absurd excuses.
Another thingthat thoroughly irks me is the defeatist attitude that was shown in thearticle. Twice in fact. You state that Russia boasts a victory in the Olympics,and say that they probably will beat us on the theory that "We can'tshoot." That is about as absurd as Wes Santee admitting that he can't runthe mile under four minutes. What American shooters and sportsmen need is somereal American confidence.
It's not thefancy firearms or special "clothing"; it's merely a matter ofdetermination, and, remember, the Russians only have two hands and put theirpants on one leg at a time....
GEORGE E. STOCKING
A STATE OFANXIETY
I have just read your article How Russia Outshoots Us.
February 21, 1955
I am a littlehazy on one point.
Why can't weallow our standard of living and willingness to send aid to foreign countriesto speak for our superiority over Russia? Why can't we enter internationalsports to win for the love of winning and not to influence the political worldas Russia does?
We and othercountries know that Russian athletes are "pros," so why reach a stateof anxiety?
ALLAN B. PACKMAN
WHO KNOWS? WHO'SHEARD?
In the Jan. 31st issue of SI there was a fine article on How Russia OutshootsUs. I would like to point out a few facts which you might already know. We havea similar system as Russia of picking team members for the ISU and Olympicmatches in our Regional tournaments. We do not all adopt the same firingposition because we feel that the human body differs in structure. We do firethree-position indoors but, as you said, we do very little three-positionshooting outdoors. It is also true, as you stated, that we lack the ranges tofire on.
So the Russiansoutshot us at the International Shooting Union matches! What should we do? Whatcan we do? Everyone knows of the Olympics, but how many know that targetshooting is an Olympic event? How many people know that NRA stands for theNational Rifle Association of America, the governing body for the targetshooters in the United States?
Why haven'tpeople heard about target shooting? The answer to this seems to be that thereis no publicity to amount to anything for the sport. A bullfight in Spain, or adog race in Florida can get better write-ups in newspapers than a local shootercan by firing a new national record. To most people a "free" riflematch is one in which there is no entry fee.
Bohi Rifle Club
Congratulations to SI and to Paul Walker for an excellent accounting of the ISUcompetition at Caracas.
Your attention iscalled to a significant motion made at the meeting of the National RifleAssociation Executive Committee: "That a minimum of four Regionaltournaments in each category of international-type competition be held, thisnumber to include any regular Regional tournaments which elect to conduct anadequate program of international-type."
Progress is beingmade, but it takes time and effort on the part of many. Thanks to SI for theboost.
RODNEY W. PIERCE
President, Central New York
Pistol and Revolver League
A TASTE OF YOUROWN MEDICINE
First, let me congratulate you on publishing the best sports magazine in thecountry. But, why all this crying about the bad old Russians beating the poorold U.S.A. at shooting, weight lifting and the next Olympics? It seems to methat it is not so long ago that the poor old U.S.A. was bragging about beatingeverybody else in Olympic games and other sports events. Now you must take alittle of your own medicine.
Personally, thereason why the Russians are winning is that they are training correctly. I knowfrom experience that you can't be an athlete only half of the year. You have totrain all the time to stay in top shape.... The Russians train all the time asthey should but it seems to me that the athletes from the U.S.A. trainseasonally.
Better wake up,boys.
W. E. MACDONALD
Saint John, N.B., Canada
HE SAID IT IN 394A.D.
I feel the time has come to let off a little steam.
The point inquestion refers to Jimmy Jemail and his so-called HOTBOX. The question for nextweek's issue (Feb. 14) is scheduled to be: "How can the U.S. win theOlympic Games?"
It may come as ablow to all the "sport-minded" persons whose present and past interestsdeal with the Olympics, but the games were not originated nor revived to bringabout a free-for-all for national honor!
In fact, theoriginal Olympics were halted in 394 A.D. by the Roman Emperor Theodosius whosaid that they no longer served their purpose—that of fostering good will amongnations.
It is my opinion,and I hope that of others, that now is the time to present the Olympics as theywere intended.
Who is to blamefor the Olympics not being such? The sportswriters of America are big enoughmen to shoulder a large portion with their articles of win, win, win, for theU.S.A.
Come on, guys;national honor gained through individual prestige is one thing, but let's nothave any five-year plans in our own backyard!
The words ofBaron de Coubertin, the man responsible for reviving the sport festival, bestexplain the spirit that should be present in all of us. And, by the way, he wasFrench!
"THEIMPORTANT THING IN THE OLYMPIC GAMES IS NOT IN WINNING, BUT TAKINGPART."
NO CONDITION OFPURCHASE
As an avid football fan, I also enjoy watching the best game available;however, I feel that a number of the letter writers to SI in the Jan. 24 issuehave failed to consider several important points in their arguments forunlimited TV of all games.
No college, to myrecollection, has obligated itself or its funds toward satisfaction of the TVaudience of the country, nor has any school received contributions from thefans if such an obligation exists. I have never seen a TV set purchase orderwhich promised in any manner to furnish the buyer of the set with the best infootball as a condition of purchase (any owner who believes that he has such aright should rush to the nearest lawyer). Then, on what grounds do thesearmchair quarterbacks, who have merely paid for TV sets and electric bills,expect the majority of schools, which have not professionalized their teams, tocommit financial hara-kiri at the stadium gates? If some schools do not believethat the present policy is correct, let them resign from the NCAA and competewith the pros.
I recommend thatall these ardent supporters of unlimited TV present a constructive solutiontoward the replacement of these losses before leveling criticism.
I enjoy readingSI and find each copy an improvement over the last. Keep up the good work.
JAMES F. POTTER
What the officials of the NCAA do not comprehend in their objection to regionaltelevision of football is that we in the Big Ten are no more interested inEastern football than you New Yorkers would be excited over Minneapolisprofessional baseball. You certainly wouldn't bother to watch it ontelevision.
The NCAA shouldconsider presidential Press Secretary James Hagerty's reply to newsmen whoobjected to President Eisenhower's first televised news conference as a"production." Said Hagerty, "We are in the 20th century—the secondpart."
In this secondpart of the 20th century TV football fans will watch top-grade football gameson TV or none. The Midwest may have provincial standards along many lines, butwe believe we have the finest college football in America.
JOHN K. MACKENZIE
Golden Valley, Minn.
As National Director of the American TV College Football Fans, a group I helpedform partly because of the great interest SI's readers and other fans haveshown in the current TV controversy, I would like to set forth our purposes.They are:
1) To organizethe American college football television fans into an actual membership.
2) To developways and means to encourage our membership in attending college football gamesas much as possible. There shall be two national "Go To The Game" weekseach year.
3) To present thefans' views on the television issue to the NCAA TV Committee.
4) To devote waysand means to explore and study subscription television on the voluntary"Pay As You See" plan as a possible solution to the televisionissue.
5) To ask ourmembership to select their All-American team each year.
The AmericanTelevision College Football Fans is a nonprofit corporation.... Mr. BernardHonan, Lebanon, Ind., described himself as low man on the totem pole in hisletter to SI, Jan. 24. Believe me, when we get together things will be a littledifferent. The TV fans will pull college football out of the fire, and so itshould be.
TV Quarterback Box 1512
ANY DAY BUTSATURDAY
I would like to compliment you on your fine magazine.
But my mainreason for writing is to offer a suggestion to the NCAA's television problem.My plan is to have an uncontrolled television plan with one all-importantfactor. That factor is to have all televised games on any day but Saturday,when most of the country's football teams play. This would enable people to seelocal teams on a Saturday and the country's best on another day.
FOUR MEN AND 12HORSES
After reading the splendid article on polo by artist-polo player Peter Hurd(SI, Nov. 8) we wrote him a letter and arranged for a game. Some friends and Itook 12 head of horses and journeyed some 300 miles to Mr. Hurd's ranch in themountains above Roswell, N.M.
We foundeverything just as he had described it in his article, but for one thing hewould not tell you—of the genuine warmhearted hospitality extended by theHurds, Pete and Henriette. She is a well recognized artist in her own right asHenriette Wyeth.
Oh, yes, we splitthe two-game series, which happily demands a rematch.
What you have done to this Methodist preacher ex-missionary! You have turned meinto an addict.
I bought asubscription in advance of your first issue because I have been a sportsenthusiast for most of my 70 years—playing football and basketball, boxing alittle, watching other sports. The first two or three numbers cooled myenthusiasm somewhat and I decided not to renew the subscription. And now? TheJan. 24 and 31 issues have been read almost literally from cover to cover. (Idid omit the cigarette ad on the back cover of the number just read sincedinner.)
One slightcriticism. In the excellent story of Horseshoe Plantation (Jan. 24) why wasthere no picture or mention of Superintendent Goode? Twice in the past fewyears he has showed Southern hospitality coupled with an intense knowledge ofand love for the wide-spreading plantation and its wildlife, so that thisYankee visitor rates the two brief visits to the Goodes among the topexperiences of his travels.
Oh, yes. Ofcourse I shall renew when the time comes.
FRANK T. CARTWRIGHT
•PhotographerFrissell found Mr. Goode even more elusive than his bob-white quail.—ED.
TO CONTEMPLATEMANY THINGS
It was cold standing in the Sacramento River yesterday morning and the handwarmer added little to help the aching and numb hands. No steelhead chanced totake the lure (though a fresh-run 12-pound spring salmon did) and I had time tocontemplate many things, including my disappointment over the fishing coverageby SI.
When I returnedto my home the postman had left SI, Feb. 7 and, at long last, a fishing story.Pautzke and His Supertrout made the long wait worth-while. It is an excellentstory, written by men who must know what it feels like to have a steel-head hitand make his presence known. Would that we had more big steelhead in theSacramento, like the 20-pound buck Pautzke is holding in theillustration....
C. A. STROMSNESS
Joe Miller and Paul O'Neil's coverage of the steelhead and proclaimingWashington State the steelhead capital, has more than compensated for anyprevious omissions of fishing in the Northwest. A truly fine article.
Owning andoperating a small hunting and fishing lodge along the rustic, congeniallysimple atmosphere instead of the usual flashy, highly commercialized run ofresorts, I felt a bit remote from the fast moving pursuit of sports—yetPautzke, an amazing man doing an amazing job, certainly typifies the heartyWashington sportsman. We call the steelhead tops in the fishing sports.
Thanks again toSI for hitting home with a fine article.
J. E. DENTON
I was interested in the article on basketball by Grace Naismith (SI, Jan.31).
The photograph ofthe first team is a fine historical item. Would it be possible for you toidentify the other players in the picture? I think there may be severalindividuals, who later became rather well known, among them possibly AmosAlonzo Stagg, who was at Springfield at that time.
BRUCE L. BENNETT
•Stagg was amember of the class, but is not in this picture. Present here are back row,left to right, John G. Thompson, Eugene S. Libby, Edwin P. Ruggles, William R.Chase, A. Duncan Patton; center row, Frank Maham, Dr. Naismith; front row,Finlay MacDonald, William H. Davis, Lyman W. Archibald.—ED.
PRESERVE, OH GOD,THE ORTHODOX
Those who delight to ride to hounds,
Observe the most correct of bounds
In dress and gear: pink coats, fresh stocks,
And each his fitted sandwich box.
A doltish tyrotried a steal
Well taped to jar the ghost of Peel:
He thought to ride to hounds for fox
Without a proper sandwich box!
He'd not beCustom's lauding slave!
Instead, he showed a boorish knave,
A stupid oaf, a clumsy ox,
Thus destitute of sandwich box.
Of kit bedight the erring clod,
All waste without the orthodox
(Or forty-dollar) sandwich box!
From hat to bootshe had no lack;
He'd noble horse, the finest tack.
Yet well he earned the Master's knocks
For spurning, thus, the sandwich box.
Quoth Master,"Sirrah! Never think
That you'll be bid turn out in pink!
Oh, better far to lose the fox
Than ride without a sandwich box!"
The penalty wasfair, in main.
To take Tradition so in vain,
Risks all of culture on the rocks.
Preserve, oh God, the sandwich box!
LOUIS W. HUTCHINS
While reading your bobsledding article (I have never seen a bobsled), onequestion went through my mind which I think other uninitiated readers mightwonder about, too. Since races are won by such minutely small hunks of time(.03 second), where precisely does the timing start? Is the sled in motion whenthe timing starts (like the cars in the Indianapolis race) or is everythingstarted from a dead standstill? The difference in teams can be in the strengthof the legs of the brakemen, I would think.
How did they timethese things before we had electronic clocks that chop up a second sofinely?
RICHARD A. KEYIAN
•Crew has a fewfeet to get sled in motion before breaking electric eye on top of run. Theskill of the driver far outweighs any possible advantage gained by ahard-pushing brakeman. Before electronic clocks, run started when the sledbroke a string stretched across the track connected to a clock.—ED.
Without doubt SI covers sports both in text and illustration better thananything so far published. Your weekly TIP FROM THE TOP on golf is great. Veryconcise, clear and to the point. I sure hope that you have arranged to publishthis particular item in some handy form, pamphlet or otherwise, for futureready reference. And if and when you do, please put me down for a copy ofit.
•Reader DuPont'sname will be added to a growing list.—ED.
THE EGGLY ANDI
You published a cartoon with the name "Eggly" in the gag line (seecut). I have often seen the name but never before spelled as our familyname.
It is oftenspelled Egglie, Eggley or Eggllie or even Eglie. The first senders of Christmascards in England spelled it Eggley. I believe his name was William Eggley.
I and the membersof the family would like to know if your cartoonist just got the name out ofthe air or had he seen it before. We hope that maybe your cartoonist is an oldfriend of someone in our family. Maybe he just believed it a funny name for agood cartoon in a great new magazine.
JAY H. EGGLY
Ocean City, N.J.
•ArtistShirvanian thought deeply, recalled that 15 years ago he took a physicaleducation course at the Elliott Street School in Newark from a Mr. Eggly. Cometo think of it, we knew a Florence Egley in grade school. All this proves youcan't put all your Egglys in one basket.—ED.
HANDS ACROSS THETABLE
I am writing with respect to the article entitled Nonillion-to-one BridgeMystery, which appeared in the Jan. 24 issue.
I believe thatMessrs. Sheinwold and Jacoby have erred in their computation of the number ofpossible bridge hands. Specifically, they allowed for the arrangements of handsaround the table, when actually the basic equation, 52!/(13!) (13!) (13!)(13!), already allows for just that. True, the 24 possible arrangements ofhands must be considered. But rather than multiply the expansion of theforegoing equation by 24 to take care of the possible arrangements, theexpansion should be divided by 24 if the possible arrangements are not to beconsidered.
There is,moreover, an arithmetic mistake in the big number in the first paragraph. Thelast six digits as shown are 599,999 but they should be 559,999.
With an ordinarydesk calculating machine I verified in about 10 minutes the IBM computation asbeing correct for as many places as are shown in the article. The full oddsagainst any specific four bridge hands occurring in a specified arrangement are53,644,737,765,488,792,839,237,439,999 to 1.
I would welcomeMr. Sheinwold's or Mr. Jacoby's reaction to the above, since permutations andcombinations are always confusing, and the sheer magnitude of the numbersinvolved makes their verification unwieldy.
J. HUNTER MCDOWELL
Drexel Hill, Pa.
I'M NOT DOGMATIC,BUT...
I was astounded to find that many so-called mathematicians were stumped by aproblem which was so easy that it taxes my imagination why SI made ahullaballoo over it in the first place. The IBM mathematicians were correct intheir solution. It took me less than five minutes to get the correctanswer.
If AlfredSheinwold or Oswald Jacoby have the correct answer, they can each buy thefinest hat made at my expense.
In working thisproblem I would like to give credit to Thornton C. Fry, Ph.D. His tables offactorials of logarithms saved me time and work in computing this problem.These tables appeared in the book Probability and Its Engineering Uses.
I computed thisproblem by logarithms to simplify my work and here is the solution:
Converting into anumber the answer is the same as the IBM mathematicians, which is 5.3645 times10 to the 28th power.
I am notdogmatic, but I'll stake my reputation that my answer is correct.
•Al Sheinwoldwill have to make his old hat do. Readers McDowell and Tinanoff are both right:the basic equation allowed for all possible arrangements of hands.—ED.