My thanks to Robert Cantwell for a brilliant article on the world chess championship (How to Cook a Russian Goose, Aug. 14). Bobby Fischer has given new meaning to the game by expressing his great love for it. A man who loves chess as deeply as Bobby does deserves to win the title.
Kings Park, N.Y.
Now that the smoke has finally cleared, we are able to observe the chess player Bobby Fischer truly is. Fischer has mastered both the art of chess and the very important art of psyching out an opponent. It is time for the humiliated and the angry to stand up and cheer Mr. Fischer for his outstanding performance. The Russian's goose is cooked!
Bobby Fischer is eccentric, and that's fine because he is a superb chess master, which, apparently, is all that counts with most people. However, my nomination for SPORTS ILLUSTRATED'S Sportsman of the Year is Boris Spassky—for putting up with "Childe Bobby."
The dictionary defines sport as a pastime pursued in open air or having an athletic-character. It further defines athletic as "physically active and strong" and an athlete as "anyone trained to exercises of physical agility and strength." Why is Bobby Fischer on the cover of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED?
ROBERT F. TAUCKUS
I have been leading SI for a period of 10 years, but I find your interest in sport quite strained when you feature Bobby Fischer on your cover. Your magazine, in the main, seems beyond reproach. However, when you include intellectual jokes, I must draw the line.
THE COWBOYS' HOME
Your article on Texas Stadium (Some Home on the Range, Aug. 14) was tops. I have newer seen an article that so completely covered it. Texas Stadium is easily the best I have ever seen, but then its home team is also the best I have ever seen.
I relished your coverage of one heck of a stadium. From now on I'll think of them as the Dallas Wowboys.
I read your article concerning the Cowboys' new stadium with increasing anger and frustration. Another plush temple has been built so Americans may worship sports to a more glamorous degree. This is an indication of how far we have to go in rerouting our value systems.
Clint Murchison Jr. and other sports magnates and their community backers should consider the irony: while their sports shrines have been going up in many U.S. cities, the schools in those same cities have been forced for economic reasons to consider canceling entire sports programs for their students. Mr. Murchison and those like him would do better to consider the true meaning and value of sports competition and pour their money into local and national athletic programs instead of these unnecessary show-places.
MARILYN J. GILROY
Thank you for the article. It was an excellent social commentary. One only wonders what postscript archaeologists will attach to the dusty artifacts of American civilization when they exhume the Let-'Em-Eat-Cake Room of the Texas Stadium a million years from now.
WILLIAM J. ECCLESTON
Clint Murchison's palace looks like something out of the final decline of the Roman Empire. All it needs is a vomitorium.
The Dallas Cowboys do have some home on the range, but I wonder how many of the "pretty people" pictured in your Aug. 14 issue know the starting lineup for the Cowboys. You can bet the fan on the street, who can't afford today's exorbitant admission prices, can give you name and number of the entire Dallas team.
When will professional sports start catering to the real fans instead of to the wealthy? Hurrah for bleacher seats, real grass and Fenway Park.
As a devoted Reds fan, I congratulate you on your story about Joe Morgan (Little Joe Makes Big Reds Go, Aug. 14). He has certainly done his share to make the Reds an even greater team than they were in 1970. Joe is the best base stealer and one of the best all-round players in the major leagues.
You sure gave credit where credit was due. You touched all the bases. But don't forget Bob Howsam, the general manager who brought Joe Morgan to the Reds.
It is true that Jack Nicklaus Jr., age 10, shot a best-ever 86 as reported in SI's Aug. 14 PEOPLE section. But it is not true that he won the 12-and-under division of the Scioto (Ohio) Country Club's Junior Golf Tournament.
Young Nicklaus' 86 was a first-round score, and indeed he led the tournament handsomely at that point. But Jack Jr. was impaled by his own putter, so to speak, in the second and final round. He shot 101 for a total of 187 and lost the title by one shot to 11-year-old Jim Kennedy Jr., who stayed some kind of comeback alter trailing young Jack by five strokes with nine holes to play.
There are some friends of both the Nicklauses and the Kennedys in our town who think young Kennedy deserves the national recognition young Nicklaus received, even if his daddy, Jim (Boomer) Kennedy, doesn't have a sore linger. The elder Nicklaus was not without compassion and praise for Kennedy Junior. He said, "You've got the best swing, Jimmy, I've ever seen for a boy your age."
I congratulate Pamela Knight for her article on Rusty Staub (When You Can't Clout 'Em, Cook 'Em, July 31). After reading it, I'd definitely have to agree that Rusty is a good cook, despite the fact that he should be out on the baseball Held hitting home runs.
West Orange, N.J.
I don't always read all of your articles, but when I started this one I couldn't stop. It is interesting to find out what Staub does with his free time when he is injured.
I really enjoyed your article on Rusty Staub's talent in the kitchen. I'm sure baseball fans everywhere really wanted to know how Rusty squeezes garlic through a press. Next time you want an article like this, why not show a series of pictures on how Roberto Clemente starts his lawn mower?
Fairmont, W. Va.
Your Aug. 7 article with the disarming title Leapin' Lizards and Other Toothsome Fauna was sadly misplaced in a magazine presumably devoted to sports. There was little sport evidenced in this disgusting narrative of a killing fest in the wilds of Costa Rica.
It is dismaying enough that SI finds it necessary and fitting to include hunting in its coverage. Surely there is already an ample supply of publications completely dedicated to the exploits of America's "sportsmen." However, this article (complete with vivid color photographs) was more than the usual portrait of hunter and prey. It was a joyful salute to the pleasures of killing for the hell of it. SI's readers were treated to such adventures as hunting frozen, defenseless deer with searchlight and shotgun at night, and watching a dying iguana "thrashing insanely with its brain blown out."
Even the article's author somewhat affectionately describes one of the hunt's participants as sadistic, and still another as bloodthirsty. I would suggest that these characteristics apply to the article and SPORTS ILLUSTRATED as well.
PETER M. SCHWARTZ
New York City
I was appalled and disgusted by the flippant manner of Robert Jones as he told of the horrifying waste of wildlife in Costa Rica. There may be "no real pride in zapping an iguana," but to waste three to finally end up with only one is completely stupid. And to leave an animal lying beaten without making certain it has been cleanly killed is disreputable.
When an article so blatantly cruel as to include the bludgeoning to death of a fish, and the hypnotizing of a young deer so that it may be mercilessly slaughtered, can be printed in a sports magazine, who wishes to be considered a sportsman?
HUE AND CRY
Since professional tennis came to television, "tennis whites" have been replaced with colors that would give a peacock ulcers. The viewers of NET's coverage of the U.S. Pro Tennis Championships at Longwood saw colorful tennis indeed. We were treated to Tom Okker and his matching yellow shirt and shorts. We saw Ray Ruffels and Bob Carmichael attired in bright blue. John Newcombe showed off his blinding yellow apparel. The men's finals was won by Bob Lutz in his burgundy-red shirt. But the topper was Haroon Rahim and his yellow and pink shirt with the word "PEACE" in three-inch-high letters on the front.
Where will it end? Probably when some player (wearing whites) has enough courage to demand that his opponent wear whites also, instead of a tic-dyed shirt, green shorts, striped headband, checkered wristbands, blue socks and puce tennis shoes.
Polychromy has no place on the tennis court!
ALAN SCOTT DODGE
Glen Cove, N.Y.
I was especially pleased to see the article and fine photographic coverage of the 1971 National Antique Airplane Association Fly-In (Flying By Eye and the Seat of Your Pants, Aug. 7). The antique airplane movement has been growing steadily for years now, and your article caught the very essence of the antiquer. Normally only aviation periodicals cover the antiques, consequently SPORTS ILLUSTRATED should be highly commended.
Of course, I was happy to see my airplane pictured on page 35 (I'm the No. 2 man, fuselage No. 17, in the Stearman formation shot). As we antiquers prepare for the 1972 fly-in, we appreciate the fine insight into our love affair with old airplanes that SI has provided for us and the rest of the nation's sport fans. Thank you.
THOMAS E. LOWE
Illinois State Director
Antique Airplane Association
Crystal Lake, Ill.
Address editorial mail to SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, TIME & LIFE Building, Rockefeller Center, New York, N.Y. 10020.