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Original Issue


He was drawing big, fine crowds to Houston's athletic greenhouse, the Astrodome, but was his message getting through? Billy Graham wasn't sure. "These seats are made for baseball and football," said Dr. Graham, "but for a preaching service they are too comfortable. Too many people can go to sleep. I like those old, hard wooden benches, where you twist and turn—and stay awake. And you get your calisthenics while listening to the preacher."

As one able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, Pole Vaulter Don Bragg was a natural to try out for the title role in a new Broadway musical called It's Superman. When last heard from, Olympian Bragg was hankering to play Tarzan in the movies, but that project never got off the ground and into the trees. Now here he was singing songs and reading lines from the script for the Superman people. He was pretty good, but he didn't measure up in every way they had in mind. Specifications called for a man standing 6 feet 4 and weighing 190 pounds who could really sing and act. Bragg is 6 feet 3, weighs 220 and is, uh, a great ex-pole vaulter.

Fresh out of new places to drop into of an evening in their upper East Side neighborhood in New York, Yankee Infielder Phil Linz and Army's famed ex-Halfback Bob Anderson determined to construct their own. So doing, they rented store space in a new building, nailed up a handsome beamed ceiling, laid a brick fireplace, pasted beige-and-green burlap on the walls and put down a red-slate floor (below). They named it Mr. Laff's Tavern and, dusting off their hands, stood back for a hoped-for rush. But there was one unsettling complication: a few days before the opening Linz got word he'd been traded to Philadelphia.

Taking a visiting VIP on a hunt is ordinarily a difficult and demanding business for the host. What if the visitor can't shoot? Should the host tie down the prey, or fire simultaneously and hope for the best, or what? Such questions gave Austrian officials headaches when Rumanian Prime Minister Ion Gheorghe Maurer showed up aching to bag a chamois—a hard-to-find, hard-to-hit mountain antelope. Their precautions of walkie-talkies, beaters and fervent prayers weren't really necessary. When Maurer sighted a chamois scarcely two hours after the hunt began, he calmly dropped it with a single, classic neck shot, from 273 yards. "No one will believe it," sighed the prime minister.

He was a triple-threat back at Indiana and, in the days when there were such things, played for the Los Angeles Dons, the New York Yanks and the Dallas Texans before becoming a Baltimore Colt. Nowadays, Halfback George Taliaferro holds a master's degree in social work, and he and his staff are caught up in the antipoverty program not far from Baltimore. One fine, fallish day they all got together for a little game of easy-does-it touch. Whereupon one of his own men crunched down on George's ankle. The cast comes off the leg—and the old All-America comes off the crutches—next week.

Along with 120,000 others—a smallish crowd by local standards—Bobby and Ethel Kennedy trooped into Rio's Maracana stadium for a soccer match between Brazil and the U.S.S.R. and, in keeping with their goodwill mission, rooted for the home team. Brazil could do no better than tie the Russians 2-2, but one of those goals was scored by Brazil's divine Pelé. After the game Kennedy went to the locker room, where he found Pelé under the shower like any mortal. Pelé emerged in a lather but was unflustered by the fuss when given a J. F. K. tie clasp and a J.F.K. half-dollar key chain. Not so R.F.K. "Did you get his autograph?" asked Ethel, as Bobby came out. "Oh my gosh!" cried the Senator. "I completely forgot."

What with all the agitation he had had this year—bonking John Roseboro on the head with a bat and an allergy his doctor blamed on the revolution in his native Dominican Republic—the Giants' Juan Marichal decided to cool it this fall with skin diving. And already he talks as if deep-water euphoria has followed him to the surface and possessed him with unflappable tranquility. "In the sea you are on your own," says Marichal. "It is very beautiful. The colors change. Blood looks green. The barracuda stays the same distance all the time. But the shark will bump you. To find out if you are soft enough to eat, I guess."

What the University of Kentucky had in mind was a salute to alumni who had won letters in college athletics before going on to other glories in their professions. High on the list, of course, came Governor Edward Breathitt Jr., who was a letter-man in track back in the '40s. Breathitt? Funny, nobody could recall any of his exploits. "I ran the 440, but not well enough to letter," the governor confessed. "I got that as manager."

Almost everyone agrees that when a heel-and-toe racer sets out to walk the 50-kilometer Olympic course he will be gone for a while, but when one more U.S.A. contestant came puffing and blowing down a Tokyo street the other day, a year after the Olympics had ended, it was enough to tax a passerby's credulity. Which, you might say, was right in keeping with the rest of Jim Hutton's latest movie (below): boy Olympian with no place to sleep meets girl secretary with bedroom to spare, etc., etc. Still, the number 44 that Hutton was wearing on his jersey—that rang a bell. "I used it because of a friend," said Hollywood's Hutton. "It belongs to Jerry West of the Lakers."