To raise money for a S�o Paulo hospital, two dozen Brazilian celebrities, including a former president, a cardinal and the country's famed soccer player, Pel� (SI, Oct. 24) agreed to do paintings to be sold at auction. Using borrowed oils and pallet, Pel� took an hour and a half to dash off a primitive study in green and blue of a soccer ball homing into a goal. "I had thought of doing a church scene," he said, "but everybody has already painted a church." Last week Pel�'s work brought the top price, $1,000, at the charity auction, and Pel� was given a gold paintbrush to mark his stroke of genius. "Never in my life had I painted anything," he said, "and I never will again. This is my first and last work of art." The picture was bought by a Sao Paulo businessman, who declared, "The canvas is objective, and the colors have excellent harmony. I am very proud to own the world's only Pel�."
It looked for a while as if Sandy Koufax, NBC's new pitchman (below), would make his broadcasting debut on the network's sports special before the Super Bowl. In a go-for-the-throat struggle with CBS for the most viewers, NBC executives wanted Koufax to take part in a pregame program with Johnny Unitas and Jimmy Brown. But Koufax begged off. "I want to wait for my first assignment until the baseball season," he reportedly told his new bosses. "It's the one subject I know something about."
According to his political opponents Vice-President Hubert Humphrey has been getting places for years on a cushion of air. That may be, but the other day he really was airborne. Riding in a hydroskimmer, which operates at 50 mph some four feet above the water, Humphrey took a 17-mile trip over the Niagara River from Buffalo to Wheatfield, N.Y. "Live with Humphrey and live dangerously," the Vice-President told the crew, before prudently raising one politic question: "Where are the Falls?"
The owner contended his colt, Pande, was a well-fed grandson of a Kentucky Derby winner worth $30,000, but the most famous horse thief in years, Ethel Kennedy, claimed he was a starving bag of bones when she rescued him from a nearby farm in Fairfax County, Va.—so sickly, in fact, that he died five days later. Last week a seven-man jury tried Ethel in the county courthouse. Important testimony for the defense came from a meteorologist after attorneys for the owner, Nick Zemo, offered in evidence photographs purporting to show Pande in fine health only a few days before Mrs. Kennedy made off with him in October 1963. The meteorologist told the jury that shadows in the pictures indicated that they were taken in May or July. The horse opera ended happily when the jury found Ethel blameless.
Norma Williams, like many another housewife, wanted to be a contestant on a quiz program. Finally she convinced husband Dick to drive her to a TV studio in Burbank, Calif. to be interviewed for The Hollywood Squares. Norma was turned down, but Dick Williams, who is the manager of the Boston Red Sox, was invited to participate. Last week, in his 10th appearance, he became the show's first grand champion, winner of $2,500, a stereo, a movie camera, a Honda, a trip for one to Paris, a week for two in Las Vegas and a three-tiered silver fox cape. Said Norma Williams, "I'm satisfied. I got the silver fox. And as for that trip to Paris—he's not going alone."
The Dutch royal palace is a 17th century, 25-room affair, staffed by some 60 people, and Queen Juliana, who lives there, never has seemed hard pressed for help. But the other day the guests at Princess Margriet's wedding were unable to have a scheduled skating party because, court officials explained, "the lake behind the palace is covered by a little snow, and we have not enough personnel to clean the ice." In truth, it was not the snow that was giving the royal party a headache. The magnums of champagne consumed the night before had dampened everyone's sporting spirit.
Andy Macdonald, one of the world's finest Rugby players, has survived a bare-handed battle with a 600-pound wounded lion on his farm in Zambia. Attacked by the animal, he was eventually able to fight it off by thrusting his right arm down its throat. The lion gave up its attack and later was found dead. Macdonald, his face mauled, an ear torn off and his arm mangled, crawled three miles through the bush to a road, where he was found barely conscious. After a six-hour operation, during which surgeons used 400 stitches to close his wounds, Macdonald, who played for the Springboks, the famed All-South African team, had one request: "Make sure I get the lion skin."
On sale at the Sugar Bowl were l-foot-by-2-foot photographs of Alabama's frequently deified coach Bear Bryant walking on water (below). The price was 50�. Business was brisk, but it got even better when, just before kickoff, the sun broke through the clouds for the first time in three days. A large group of Alabama fans rose from their seats at the sight, stretched out their hands toward Bryant and shouted, "We believe." Bear told newsmen a few days later, "This stuff about me being some sort of deity or possessing occult powers is getting embarrassing. I wish you would help me suppress it." Sorry, Bear, you'll have to do it yourself. Only Bryant can knock Bryant in Alabama.