Where there's a beach there's a ball, and where there's a ball there's Wilt Chamberlain, even if it's a volleyball. Wilt turned up recently on the sands of Will Rogers State Beach, in Santa Monica, where he "bumped" a few with Laker teammate Keith Erickson and Gene Selznick, one of the finest U.S. volleyball players of all time. "Wilt's learning," said Erickson, loyally. "Wilt will never be great," confided another player. "He's got wooden hands."
Brazil is justifiably proud of Pelé, the world's most famous soccer player, so Brazilian journalists did not take kindly to Gloria Diaz, a native of the Philippines and the current Miss Universe. "What do you think of Pelé?" a reporter asked her in S√£o Paulo. "Pelé? Who's Pelé?" said Miss Universe. "She was not," a reporter acidly noted, "the prettiest girl present." In Rio de Janeiro, the well-rounded Miss Universe was still giving square answers. Summed up Rio's press: she is "totally insignificant."
Martin Stone, 41, chief executive of Monogram Industries, Inc., an eclectic $145-million empire in Los Angeles, never quite relinquished his boyhood dream of being a big-league baseball player, even after a torn knee cartilage in high school put such a career out of reach. He still played for fun and exercise, and in 1968 was invited by a friend, Warren Hellman, a director of the Atlanta Braves, to work out in West Palm Beach, where he pitched batting practice. With the help of Walter Alston, Stone traded himself to the Dodgers this year, showed up for spring training in Vero Beach, and he's been the Dodgers' sometime unpaid batting-practice pitcher ever since. "I get the most fun pitching to players who don't ask me what I'm going to throw," says Stone. "Jim Lefebvre, Manny Mota, Bill Sudakis never ask. They take whatever comes their way—fastballs, up, in or out. My curveball is lousy." On business trips Stone sometimes runs into the Dodgers in New York or Cincinnati or Pittsburgh, in which case business is scheduled around the game. The Dodgers carry his uniform and an extra pair of spikes, just in case he shows up.
Making movies is a costly business, with every delayed moment adding up to thousands of dollars, or so the public has been led to believe. Nevertheless, Dick Bartlett, who will help produce a film called Calliope, has courageously signed Richie Allen to play a costarring role. Bartlett doesn't think he'll have any trouble with a) Allen showing up on time or b) Allen showing up. "People don't understand Rich," he explained. "This is a man who needs love."
"I am a keen golfer," said Chung Hee Park, president of South Korea, which translates to about a 19-handicap. "The ambition of my life is to play golf at Pebble Beach." Park was to meet with President Nixon in San Francisco, and what more joyful prospect than to fulfill that lifelong ambition? He wrote ahead, reserving a tee time at Pebble Beach. Ten thousand weary miles later, Chung Hee Park checked into the Del Monte Lodge. There was just time for a nap. So Park slept...and slept...right through his tee time. He never did get to play at Pebble Beach. Said one of his aides: "He dreamed a fine score."
The tall (6'7") male model you may be seeing in TV commercials is Rick Barry, who has registered with the Kay Newlin Model Agency of San Francisco. Barry digs modeling; he believes it will take him a step closer to his ultimate ambition, the movies. Says Miss Newlin, "We are not training Rick as a model. He has sufficient ability already added to his good looks, his fine carriage and, of course, his basketball name." Of course.
"This horse had a razorlike back. I always felt it was going to slice me in half, and I slid around in the saddle, ready to fall off at any moment." Sir Alec Guinness was reminiscing about the horse he rode in Lawrence of Arabia. What brought on the recollection is his latest part as King Charles I in Cromwell. "I almost did not take this role when I found I had to ride a horse," said Sir Alec, "but the role was too challenging to turn down, horse or no horse." It is not that Sir Alec dislikes horses; what he dislikes is having to act on a horse. Since he can't ride, he finds it difficult to act and control the horse at the same time. But he conceded that his mount in Cromwell was "soft and very comfortable. I even learned to canter."
Everyone knows that the burdens of the presidency are awesome, but few are aware of just how carefully a President must budget his time. Syd H. Conn is aware. Conn, a citizen of West Hartford, Conn., raises money for a camp for disadvantaged children. Each summer Conn organizes a charity softball game, and he thought it would be a good idea to present baseballs autographed by President Nixon to some of the kids on this occasion. So Conn sent eight balls to the White House. Two weeks later the balls came back. The President had autographed two. Six were blank.