"The trouble about Prince Philip," declared the London Daily Mirror last week, "is that his heart is often in the right place, but his head isn't." The editorial blast came when word got back to Britain that Prince Philip, King Constantine of Greece and two German princes had bagged 7,500 ducks, geese, wild swan and wild turkey in four days shooting on Giaour Ada, an island in Thrace. To make matters even worse, it was reported that the royal party had used a Greek air force helicopter and 30 professional beaters to scare up their quarry. Philip is a trustee of the World Wildlife Fund, an international conservation body that has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars setting up game preserves to protect rare species like the white rhinoceros and mountain gorilla. Said the Mirror, "He works hard for the World Wildlife Fund. He urges the British people to work hard, too. He himself works harder (with his trigger finger) than anybody."
The Green Bay Packers were hot enough last year, but next season they will be hotter still, thanks to George Halas. The Halas involved is not Chicago's Papa Bear, but his 42-year-old nephew and namesake, who is a salesman for General Electric. In his professional capacity young Halas has sold Vince Lombardi a $60,000 electric blanket for Green Bay's perpetually frozen Lambeau Field. The electrical system—consisting of wiring buried six inches under the turf—will thaw snow quickly, keep the field playable in almost any weather and enable grass to grow year round.
Michigan's governor, George Romney, out on the campaign trail, entered a sled-dog race on a more sporting trail in Anchorage the other day, but the event was fixed from the start. Romney was matched against Alaska's governor, Walter Hickel, over a 200-yard course. Since neither man is an experienced musher, precautions were taken: handlers were staked out around the area to prevent a getaway dog; the sleds had only three huskies instead of the usual nine or 10; and the governors' wives were asked to ride in the sleds to slow the dogs down. Governor Romney—and wife—finished first, but, needless to say, the race was a drag.
"Until I see whether I can still pitch," said Whitey Ford last week in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., "I don't want them to list me on the Yankee roster." But Whitey, who has had two arm operations in the last three years, is hopeful. "Two years ago," he said, "I tried to drive some trotters at Pompano Park and my left arm was so weak I could hardly get a horse around the track even once. But this morning I worked four horses for Del Miller and Billy Haughton, and I didn't have a bit of trouble. That proves to me I've got back some of my strength."
For more than a month now, Stavros Niarchos has been operating his $200 million fleet from a bush camp in Kenya. By day he stalks the wildlife (he has killed East Africa's big five—rhino, elephant, lion, leopard and buffalo), and at night he dictates letters to his young English secretary, who flies into camp in a Cessna bringing Niarchos' voluminous correspondence. "He hasn't missed work for a single pow-wow around the cookpots," the secretary says. Not even the day Niarchos was almost killed. While he and his white hunter were inspecting an animal they had shot, the two men were charged by a lion. They snap-fired simultaneously and the lion fell dead at their feet. "Close, very close that one," said Niarchos, before going back to camp and the old business grind.
Charles de Gaulle's term as President of France does not end until 1973, and who knows what he has in mind then. But the leader of France's Independent Republican Party, 41-year-old Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, a onetime Gaullist cabinet minister, is already advertising his fitness for the top job. A few weeks ago an ad appeared in L'Express showing him doing an impeccable christiania on the slopes of Mont Blanc. The caption was "Movement in Equilibrium." Giscard then hired the French ski team's relaxation specialist to give his party's candidates in this week's elections psychomotor exercises to make sure they shaped up.
The Dallas-Fort Worth Spurs in the Class AA Texas League have done little more than launch spring training, but already club officials are impressed with their new man, Bobby Bragan. The former manager of the Atlanta Braves has been selling billboard advertising for the Spurs in 10,600-seat Turnpike Stadium. With a fast sales pitch, he disposed of all the available fence space in just eight days. His finest delivery so far was to a local poultry dealer. Bragan suggested the man advertise his product on the fence near the foul lines. Then, said Bobby, "Every time a ball is hit toward your sign, or over it, the fans will see your ad: ANOTHER SMITH POULTRY FOUL." Bragan got his bird.
On his seventh birthday last week Prince Hiro, the son of Japan's Crown Prince Akihito, was the subject of an Imperial Household press release. It stated, among other things, that "the Prince rose in height by two inches during the past year to stand now 3'10"; the Prince likes to build plastic models of Japanese television and movie monsters; the Prince loves to play violin for an ensemble; the Prince has taken up skiing. He has been practicing on a slope [above] in the Togu Palace gardens, using skis and boots that his father wore 20 years ago. The boots are several sizes too big for him, so he has stuffed them with cotton." A palace chamberlain reported that after three days of dedicated practice the Prince had mastered the art of skiing and was able to go straight down a slope of 30 yards without falling. "He manifests a highly promising form as a downhill specialist," the official observed.
During a recent round at San Francisco's Hayward Golf Club, Willie Mays was teeing up his ball on the 5th hole when some small boys approached him. One asked Mays for his autograph. Willie obliged. Then he turned back to his tee shot. Looking down, he realized his golf ball was gone. So were the boys.