King Hussein of Jordan and his wife, Princess Muna, are taking an accelerated course in archery. Dr. Tom Pickering, an English geologist, is instructing them in preparation for a competition to be conducted by mail with the Canterbury Archers. The secretary of the Canterbury Archers explains that the idea of the thing "is to encourage interest in archery in Amman." This makes King Hussein's buildup of a force of archers the only O.K. aspect of the Middle East arms race.
They laughed when Kansas City Rookie Goalie Ted Ouimet knelt at the altar during his wedding to Daniela Heinen. Lettered in ink on the soles of his shoes were "Help" and "SOS." "Our fellows this year are rather given to things of this sort" says Coach Fred Hucul tolerantly of his hockey players. Earlier, on a road trip, Ouimet's head was shaved by the fun-loving Blues, and then Wing Max Mestinsek had to make it home in his stocking feet after teammates stole his shoes. One of the leaders of this jolly band is Defenseman Bill Plager, who has suffered a leg injury that will keep him off the ice for at least another two months. Some say it was Divine Retribution, but it shapes up more clearly as eight or so long weeks of the Devil finding work for Plager's idle hands.
For weeks Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau of Canada has been working out in his backyard, in training for the kickoff at Canada's Grey Cup classic. He was gunning for the 40-yard record set by a former governor-general, Earl Alexander of Tunis, in the late '40s, and early reports from his coach were confident. "He's already doing 25-30 yards with the one-step convert approach," said Vic Chapman, an 11-year veteran of the Canadian Football League who himself once held a league punting record of 91 yards. "I told him to back up five or six steps and take a good run at it." So on Cup day Trudeau had the TV cameras moved back to allow a good run and he kicked the ball five yards.
"A belly-dancer naturally thinks of her own belly, but she thinks of other people's bellies, too," says Little Egypt, granddaughter of the original Little Egypt of Chicago World's Fair fame. The incumbent L.E. was disturbed to learn that basketball players get hit in the stomach a lot, so she called Jim Hardy of the Los Angeles Stars and offered to toughen up his boys' bellies. Hardy accepted, stating that her method could very well stimulate his players to greater agility. Miss Egypt has been teaching the team her own system of isometrics and breathing exercises, and she is all heart. Oh, maybe not all heart.
December 9, 1968
India's Indira Gandhi was quite a sportswoman as a girl, riding, swimming and hiking in the Himalayas with her father. When she became prime minister her activities were suddenly limited to long walks and the awarding of prizes to other athletes, but lately work has closed in to a degree precluding even that. An aide reports that Mrs. Gandhi has been reduced to sitting-up exercises in her bedroom.
Winning some and losing some, boxer Thad Spencer recently dropped his fight to England's Billy Walker, but at least was finally cleared of the fraud charge that had been hanging over his head in London. A Regent's Park landlord charged that Spencer had paid half a month's rent on a flat and then failed to come up with the other half. When the case came to court Spencer explained that he had merely gone apartment hunting, or flat hunting, on behalf of his fiancée and two friends. The flat was to be for them, but they had no money, so he paid the first fortnight's rent. Nobody paid the rest. "I am not responsible for three grown people, even though I am going to marry one of them," Spencer said. The presiding magistrate said he thought the behavior of all parties concerned had been disreputable, but he did dismiss the charges.
"Some people hit a little white ball around in the green grass and call that enjoying—I call that a waste of time," says Mira Slovak, who is recuperating from a sailplane accident, and in the process wasting more than his usual bit of time. "Chess may be the best sport for me since my crackup," said the hydroplane driver and pilot, adding—more characteristically—"people who lead normal lives think I'm an idiot, but I'm the guy who is right when I'm flying upside down. They must look back with only desires to have done certain things. I have done them! And I use common sense. If I know I'm going to get killed doing something, I won't touch it." There is no denying the common sense of that.