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Original Issue


Brenda Starr, girl reporter, hasn't aged a day since 1940 when the eponymous comic strip first appeared. She's still romantically pursuing Editor Hennie Horton, still getting into journalistic hot water and frequently taking up good causes. Her latest is conservation. Brenda—and her creator, Miss Dale Messick—are out to rescue alligators from evil poachers in the Everglades. The catalyst for this episode is an engaging pet 'gator named Aloysius, a sort of scaly Snoopy, who vengefully snatches ladies' alligator handbags and rips alligator shoes. Miss Messick, one of the few women who draw comics, is serious about conserving alligators. During the winter she and her husband make their home on Marco Island, Fla., where poaching is a fact of life. "Brenda," she says, "is going to promote imitation alligator bags and shoes. After all, they look like the real thing and don't endanger the reptiles."

It is well known that both baseball players and politicians are prone to hyperbole, and it was no doubt in this vein that Congressman Wilmer (Vinegar Bend) Mizell (R., N.C.), whose pitching career was interesting rather than brilliant, was moved to say, after Armstrong, Aldrin and Collins returned to earth: "I'm anxious to see the rock samples they've brought back from the moon. I'm sure there's a few of my home run balls in that crowd."

The charity wrestling match between Dr. Sam Sheppard and Wild Bill Scholl (SI, Aug. 11) more than fulfilled the expectations of the 1,500 fans who crowded into a high school gym in Waverly, Ohio. Sheppard (surprise!) won, "numbing" his opponent by shoving his two middle fingers into Scholl's mouth and pressing on the mandibular nerves beneath his tongue. "We call it the 'mandibular marvel,' " crowed Sheppard's manager. "It's the first new hold I've seen in 15 to 20 sears." "Illegal!" screamed Wild Bill, who claimed he couldn't eat solid foods for three days. "The usual put-on," muttered others. Whatever, the Pike County Cancer Fund took home $3,000.

After the International Karate Championships in Long Beach, Calif., Ed Parker, the promoter, announced that his Grand International champion may take up boxing. Can the heavyweight karate champion beat the heavyweight boxing champion? "I think he'll be a winner," said Parker. At least he sounds like one. His name is Joe Lewis.

The party at New York's fashionable Four Seasons restaurant to announce the formation of Mickey Mantle Men and Joe Namath Girls Inc., a new employment agency, may have been the classiest bash ever thrown for a couple of jocks. In fact, the guest list was so select that only two other athletes were let in the joint—Whitey Ford and Billy Martin, who shook hands with his left, or nonpunching, hand. Mantle made a funny. When he was introduced he said he would be very brief since it was his understanding that people preferred to drink rather than listen to speeches. Namath spared the jokes and got down to business. He told everyone to give the five points and take the Jets in their game against the Giants. The Jets won 37-14. Joe may not know a Mafioso when he sees one, but he knows his football.

At 6'5" Joseph Luns of The Netherlands is the world's tallest foreign minister. And at 206 pounds he is one of the heaviest. Says Luns, "If I wouldn't keep up my daily exercises I would be 228 pounds within a week." Evers morning Luns does 14 different exercises, including standing on his head, and he swims and walks whenever he can. "It's hard to keep fit," he explains. "As foreign minister I have to enjoy too many lavish lunches and tasty dinners. The last time I was in New York I walked 45 minutes after a big and exhausting dinner, wearing my dinner jacket and all my medals."

If constituents in the state of Maine have had trouble reaching their chief executive lately, they might try the nearest softball field. The Governor Kenneth M. Curtis All-Stars have been touring Maine off and on since June 10 for the benefit of the Jimmy Fund, an organization that sponsors cancer research in children, and they are undefeated in 10 games. Curtis, who at 38 is the nation's youngest governor, is batting .488. "I'm sure no one was grooving them to me," he said. "They even brushed me back some."

President Georges Pompidou, having devalued the franc, also apparently put little value on the ornate gilt chairs the De Gaulles had ordered for a summer retreat at Le Lavandou in the South of France, where Pompidou took his family for a holiday last week. The gilt chairs were replaced with wicker furniture and deck chairs, "more sensible for wet bathing suits," said Mme. Pompidou.