His platform (education and welfare) is topical, and his slogan (Jim Beatty Is Running for You) is catchy. Accordingly, the middle-distance runner (and the first man to break the indoor four-minute mile) stands a fair chance this week to win one of seven Mecklenburg County seats open in the North Carolina House of Representatives. Beatty (below) has already tasted politics as director of a state-supported antipoverty program, but his interests in the game were first awakened, he says, by Mihaly Igloi, his Hungarian refugee track coach. Igloi used to wax warm on the virtues of Harry S Truman in their off-track political dialogues, says Beatty, "and I'm a Kennedy Democrat, if there is such a term."

The plot is to beguile ladies, gentlemen and family groups, so Steve Allen, before opening his new motorcycle sales agency in Los Angeles, personally selected the red-brick linoleum flooring, the hand-rubbed walnut paneling, the brass lantern chandelier and the gold velour side chairs. Allen's thoughts on motorcycling, an activity he took up for pleasure four years ago, are as decorative as the premises. "It makes you really interested in the scenery you're passing through," he says, "and not in the long-shot panoramic way that you pick up images from cars. I mean in a closer, sharp-focus way." Contrary to the general impression, says Allen, "Happiness on a motorcycle is not just taking your mufflers off and deafening the neighborhood."

Is Charles O. Finley, owner of the Kansas City Athletics, so all-fired quixotic as everybody says? Sure he is, which behavioral trait can be a virtue. Reduced to a steaming pulp, for example, in a Kansas City traffic snarl the other day while he and thousands of paying customers were oozing to a doubleheader with the New York Yankees, Finley popped out of his cab, trotted a quarter of a mile to the nearest phone, called the police—and took over directing the balled-up motorists until relieved of his post by motorcycle patrolmen. Very much obliged that Finley had got things moving again, one policeman gave him a lift on to the stadium—where he arrived in time to see his A's defeated twice.

It was just before the all-important track meet against Cal—the one, you know, in which Stanford tries to look its best. Well, up comes Patrick John Anthony Morrison, the long-haired scholarship sprinter from London, "trottin' along with my little bag, all eager for the meet." And out steps Coach Payton Jordan (and an officious javelin thrower with clippers) to ask the runner to suffer "just a little trim of the sideburns and the back." Morrison, whose blond and wavy hair comes down three-quarters of the way over his ears, could "see the team lurking in the background," but said "absolutely no" to the haircut. The team bus left without him, and favored Stanford lost the day—which sounds to some like just desserts, even conceding that Jordan was following orders from "very rational and sincere" higher-ups. But another higher-up concurred with Jordan's stand: in a note last week, Mamie Morrison, the moptop's mom, endorsed the haircut.

Having prepped in pits no less prestigious than the London Philharmonic, Orchestra Leader Skitch Henderson talked his way onto Rodger Ward's Indianapolis 500 pit crew and will function next week somewhere between water boy and good-luck charm. And why not? "Mechanics and music go together," he says. "It's all mathematics." For those unable to plumb that logic, Henderson has another epigram: "Thoroughbred machinery is like a woman—most temperamental, most feminine. They're only safe when they're stopped and the ignition is off."

"When I'm finished with baseball I'd like to become a golf pro on the tour," Willie Mays confided to a friend recently—and lost no time getting himself ready. Taken out of a game in Candlestick Park the other day by Giant Manager Herman Franks after he had fallen over the first-base sack, Mays left the field in the fourth inning, showered, dressed, went to the nearby St. Luke's Hospital for a routine X ray of his bruised left knee, telephoned his business manager at the Lake Merced golf club, headed over there, and before his teammates had left Candlestick following a 2-0 win over St. Louis, Willie was driving off the first tee.

As a Rose Bowl hero in the '40s, and for three other years the quarterback for the Los Angeles Rams, Jim Hardy did what he could to satisfy southern California's hunger for football. Still, says Hardy, now an insurance man, the region remains on the brink of starvation. By way of relief, he and four associates are backing an American Football League doubleheader (in the new Anaheim Stadium in August) in which Boston will play Oakland at 6 p.m. and Kansas City will play San Diego at 8:30. Hardy's admitted motive is to land an AFL franchise for the Los Angeles area. "It would be a boom," he says. "Look around: it's been years since anyone has been able to get good seats for the Rams' games."

"I happen to take two things very seriously—college and baseball," said Chicago Cubs Pitcher Ken Holtzman, putting down a book on French poetry and picking up another on how to pitch to the St. Louis Cards. Holtzman, a $40,000 bonus rookie, attends classes (below) at the Chicago campus of the University of Illinois every weekday morning, then scurries out to Wrigley Field—or, on weekends, to Los Angeles or New York or wherever Leo Durocher beckons. Holtzman is studying for a degree in education, and the Cubs, figuring it keeps him out of the draft, are pleased to pay his tuition. Besides, mixing college with professional ball-playing is not all that difficult. As one Chicago cynic remarked: "I'm told college football players often try to do the same thing."