Womens' Wear Daily, which likes to keep abreast or avant the fashion guard, consulted Heavyweight Champion Muhammad Ali last week about women's styles. "Western women's clothes are lustful," Ali declared. "If you have merchandise to sell, you display it. Western women display themselves to taunt and tease and cause trouble. If I were with a woman and she was dressed in one of those ugly mini-skirts and cutout tops, some man might be excited and upset by her display...and I'd have to protect her from this and probably get into a fight."
One midnight four months ago Howard Hughes checked into the Desert Inn in Las Vegas, renting the entire penthouse floor, which has eight suites. Hughes immediately retired to his rooms, and he has not come out of them since. Word has it that after several weeks the owners of the hotel, which makes its money not on room and restaurant charges but on its gambling casino, realized that the reportedly ailing Hughes and his eight penthouses were a luxury they could ill afford. Their concern became more pressing as the time approached for golf's Tournament of Champions, which is held at the Desert Inn in April. Rumors—since denied—have it that someone suggested to Howard Hughes that he might move. If so, it was a bad suggestion. Hughes is expected to buy a 50-year lease on the Desert Inn—golf tournament, penthouses and all—for $13 million this week.
"St. Louis is in danger of getting still another cigar-store Indian," the art critic of the Post-Dispatch said the other day after inspecting photographs of the controversial $50,000 sculpture of Stan Musial (SI, Feb. 13) that is to be placed in front of Busch Memorial Stadium. Declaring that Sculptor Carl Mose has missed The Man (below), the critic wrote: "There is little evident feeling of muscle, or even of an atomy: the coiled spring of Musial's body in its familiar cocked-bat position is torpid in the overweight sculptured figure." Musial was slightly more fundamental in his criticism. "I don't know about statues," he said, "but the stance is too straight." Mose will try to make the necessary corrections before the bronze is cast.
When Sir Laurence Olivier was playing Othello in London last month, he added a large steak and a bottle of burgundy to his daily diet to give him added strength, and worked out in a gym on Holland Park Road before his performances. "Lifting weights is really sovereign for the voice," Olivier explains. "It relaxes the throat muscles and I can get much lower notes." He now goes to the gym twice a week (right), paying three guineas for 40 minutes' exercise. "I have a childish belief that a strong body means a strong heart," he says. "This is probably untrue, but heart attacks do tend to come on at about my age." Also exercising with him now is the entire cast of his current play—The Dance of Death—in which Sir Laurence has a very strenuous role.
Red Auerbach takes no little pride in his handball. He plays several times a week at the Cambridge (Mass.) Y and likes to point out that when he was in high school in Brooklyn he captained a handball team which was so good that future 13-time U.S. handball champion Vic Hershkowitz couldn't make the squad. Recently when Auerbach was in Kansas City, he heard that Hank Stram fancied himself a handball player, and a challenge match with the Chiefs' coach was arranged. Afterward, a newspaperman asked Stram for the scores. "I won the first 21-14," he reported. "I don't remember the score of the second game." But Auerbach remembered. "I was giving away six years, I had a cold and I was having trouble breathing," he said. "I won the second game 21-13."
"I feel that I'm already some type of politician after being able to stay with one ball club for 15 years," said ex-Pirate Bob Friend after he announced he was a Republican candidate for controller of Allegheny (Pa.) County. Maybe so, but seeking the same spot on the Democratic ticket is Vinnie Smith, a National League umpire for nine years. He might know something about being politic, too.
A recent Red Guard newspaper attributes the downfall of the general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party, Teng Hsiao-ping, to his penchant for playing bridge. A leader of the revisionist opposition to Mao, Teng is accused of stealing state funds to build the Higher Cadres Club, apparently a Peking version of the Cavendish, where he played bridge with "capitulationists, renegades, demons and monsters" during office hours. The newspaper, Tung Fang Hung (The East Is Red), declares the general secretary would sometimes play all afternoon, only interrupting his game long enough—presumably while he was dummy—to put his "stinking signature" on official documents. "He was really a revisionist to the bone," the newspaper says.