Among the 15 persons newly elected to the International Swimming Hall of Fame is one Benjamin Franklin—the Benjamin Franklin, who was being honored as a swimmer, a swimming teacher and our first swimming writer. In the 18th century he wrote The Art of Swimming, certainly the first such instructional text to be printed in this country, and his natatorial accomplishments include a nine-mile swim in the Thames. It is not known whether he wore his glasses on that occasion but, if he did, that's all he wore. One thing Franklin neglected to invent was the bathing suit, and his English swim was made in the nude.
You are never going to believe this, but the pretty things below are not real dancers! They are, from left to right, Jerry Rush, Bill Cottrell, Mike Weger, John Henderson, Nick Eddy and John McCambridge of the Detroit Lions at work during the filming of the book, Paper Lion. All of you who thought they were chorus girls from Las Vegas are paper fans.
Tim Durant is the enduring 68-year-old American horseman who keeps turning up, game and cheerful, to put himself through the Grand National Steeplechase at Aintree, England. At Aintree you do not have to win—you do well to survive, very well if you finish at all, and this year Durant did finish. Forty-seven years older than the winning jockey, he collected ¬£500 from the betting firm that gave 5-to-1 odds against his completing the course. He came in 15th out of 17 finishers, to be sure, but the starting field was 45. Meanwhile, across the Channel another horseman, older than Durant, chose his mount and course more prudently. Maurice Chevalier (right) at 79 elected a wooden horse and a sedate turn upon the carousel at a county fair.
"If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?" Yes. Just ask Wyoming Football Coach Lloyd Eaton. Eaton is the honorary state chairman of the Wyoming Cancer Crusade, and he and Byron Stogsdill, of the American Cancer Society, were driving back from a meeting in Torrington, Wyo. when a spring rain turned to heavy snow whipped about by winds of up to 50 mph. "We followed a snowplow for miles," Eaton says, "but the snow stalled our windshield wipers. While we stopped to clear our windshield the wind packed snow solid around our motor. That, of course, also stopped our heater. We had only light topcoats, but we wrapped newspapers and booklet leaves around our limbs as insulation to keep the body heat in." They managed to keep in just enough body heat to prevent severe frostbite over the 24 hours before a National Guardsman found them. "I shifted personnel around in every imaginable combination and devised a whole new offense," Eaton says, "but the last few hours I got to feeling like it was fourth quarter and we were down three touchdowns." Another night stuck in the car or a drop in the 12-above temperature and Coach Eaton might not have had a chance to check out that new offense.
Skiing down the north face of the Grande Motte glacier is not climbing up the north face of the Eiger, but it is quite sufficiently difficult, and France's ex-minister of finance, Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, was in the small party of skiers who managed it for the first time. Roped together for half an hour of the trip, Giscard, his wife, a guide and two other skiers struggled to the summit of the 11,800-foot glacier through a foot of fresh powder that masked the terrain. Guide André Diard says that the slopes of the Grande Motte usually skied are at angles of 15° or 20°. Angles of the north face are often 40° or 45° and, in one spot, 50°. "It was a magnificent downhill run. I am delighted," said Giscard. Mme. Giscard d'Estaing apparently was even more delighted with speedy descents, because she promptly went up in a plane and made her first parachute jump, 1,600 feet to the top of the mountain. Someone always asks those who climb up mountains why they do it, and M. Giscard was duly queried as to why he skis down glaciers. "Amusement sportif," he replied, perhaps setting a record for brevity.
"I am a conscientious actress and do not consider the cinema just a way to pass the time," says Princess Ira von Furstenberg, and one must sympathize. Eleonora Duse was a conscientious actress, too, but she did not, like Princess Ira, have to learn to walk the tightrope.
Lamar Hunt and L. W. McNutt are co-owners of the Tornado soccer team, which is reported to be the youngest professional athletic club in North America. Maybe that is why Hunt and McNutt feel paternalistic about it—enough so that recently they gave away the brides when two of their boys were married. Christine Pickering and Valerie Owens had come from Liverpool to marry John Stewart and Bobby Roach, which reduced the ranks of Tornado bachelors from 18 to 16, and 16 it seems likely to remain for a while. One of the players who attended the wedding and the reception was heard to say, "We decided not to bring girls, because we were afraid they would just get ideas."