It was last spring that associate writer Rick Telander and his wife, Judy, found the home of their dreams—a Victorian farmhouse in Lake Forest, Ill., nestled in the shady environs of such films as Ordinary People and A Wedding. And, as the Telanders came to realize, it abuts one end zone of the Chicago Bears' practice field at Lake Forest College.
"We were sitting out on the patio," says Telander, "and all of a sudden we heard, Three-38! Three-38! Hut-hut-hut!' " That was during a June minicamp. Two weeks ago, as Telander was watching the running backs through a gap in the shrubbery, Walter Payton saw the shadowy figure and said, "Get out of the bushes!" Telander, who wrote about Payton for our football spectacular, identified himself. Payton, slightly confused, asked what he was doing in "that guy's yard."
"I live here," said Telander. Payton was called back to his drills, but Telander briefed him in full last week as he began to gather material for his story on the Bears' game with the Packers (page 20). (Telander is also represented in this issue with the piece on corner-back Mike Haynes of the L.A. Raiders (page 38).
In Lake Forest the Telanders have a wraparound porch, a barn and, all in all, plenty of space for daughters Lauren, 2, and Cary, l. Lauren and Rick often play duets—she on a set of miniature drums she received for her second birthday, he on the Hendrix-model Fender Stratocaster he plays with the Del-Crustaceans, a rock band founded during Telander's stay at Northwestern, where he was a corner-back, in the late '60s. ("They play...professional instruments," raved one critic.) Lauren likes the Beatles, but her own hairstyle is more like that of Brian Setzer of the Stray Cats. "How cute," said a passerby of the girls the other day, "one punk and one regular."
On moving into his new Lake Forest digs, Telander put up a basketball hoop—"first things first," says Rick. His office was installed in the hayloft of the barn, where he has room for three—count 'em, three—desks. "Everybody should have three desks," advises Telander, an admitted paper strewer. "I figure the more desks I have, the more papers I can scatter, and the more work I can do."
Rick Telander with neighborly Bears Payton, Gary Fencik and Matt Suhey—and family.