In Ireland for the filming of James Goldman's play The Lion in Winter, Actress Katharine Hepburn recently took her clubs and set off by bicycle for 18 holes of golf at the nearby Woodbrook course, only to be refused permission to play. Woodbrook was closed to visitors to prevent the spread of foot-and-mouth disease. Miss Hepburn, a lioness in winter, had to settle for the nine-hole course at Bray, for her four-mile-each-way cycling trips to and from the studio and for her occasional dips in the icy Irish Sea.
A syndicated columnist reported recently, " Sandy Koufax is having a rug woven for his home (by Ed Fields) showing a baseball and a microphone." Questioned about this proposed bit of interior decoration, Koufax registered considerable surprise. He was not having any rug woven. In fact, the whole notion of commissioning a carpet bearing symbols of his own triumphs struck him as "an offensive idea." Well then, could Edward Fields, Inc., the concern reported to have been weaving this rug, explain the item? Yes, it could. The company was considering weaving a 2-foot-by-2-foot "tapestry" as a special present for Koufax, a grateful gesture for the pleasure he had afforded Dodger fans Fields and his son Jack. A 2-foot-by-2-foot tapestry offered as a gift is not the same kettle of fish as a floor rug commissioned by oneself. Koufax, provided with the facts, said, "I would appreciate that very much. It's very nice of them."
Among the persons who took to the slopes over the holidays were all those Robert Kennedys, Empress Farah of Iran, Actresses Julie Andrews and Janet Leigh, both of the President's daughters, and Mayor and Mrs. Lindsay of New York (below). There were also some disgruntled nonskiers. Jim Lonborg, who blithely said in December, "I'm not really worried about broken bones or anything like that" (SI, Dec. 18), is worried now. He tore ligaments in his left knee and will probably miss the start of spring training. And in Gstaad, Switzerland, Gunther Sachs and wife Brigitte Bardot (above) found themselves moping around in the rain.
A check on Alan Alda, the actor elected to portray Author George Plimpton in the film version of Paper Lion, shows things to be going pretty much as expected. Alda, now 31, whose total football experience consists of two weeks of training with his high school team in Burbank, Calif., has been working out daily to get into some kind of shape for two months of training with the Lions in Florida. Workouts consist of running, "dropping on the floor" and doing push-ups—he can now manage 22 of the latter. Alda is pinning his hopes for survival on the Lions' ability to fake, but apparently as hopes go his are a little faint. "I expect they'll use me in the movie to the point where I'll actually be killed," he has said gloomily, adding that he sees this coming about as a result of "a ton of people falling on top of me."
The incoming class at the Houston Police Academy has some interesting new boys. Among the 70 cadets are Bobby Jancik, alltime AFL leader in kick-off returns, from the Oilers' defensive backfield; J. C. Hartman, former Astro infielder; Tim James, 25-year-old son of Bandleader Harry James and a center and linebacker at TCU until injuries benched him; and Heavyweight Bobby Dennard, winner of 13 of his 16 professional fights, 11 of them by knockouts. Jancik has always wanted to go into police work. Hartman developed an interest more recently when he decided that he was not making the progress in baseball that he felt he should be. The Houston police force looked like a chance to work with youngsters and stay home with his family and business interests. James, who received his law degree in 1967, has already worked for the Fort Worth police department. The 20-year-old Dennard, who will continue to fight, is farsighted enough to want a career other than boxing to rely upon. Any young sports fan who also is (perish the thought!) a juvenile delinquent might do well to find a place for Houston in his future. It's going to be a great police force to be rehabilitated by.
A London paper referred to Edward Heath as a "surprise Boat Show visitor" when the leader of the Opposition turned up at the International Boat Show in London's Earls Court recently. The paper is certainly easy to surprise. Heath is famous for his interest in sailing, and, in fact, he has just replaced his Snipe, Blue Heather, with a 16-foot fiber-glass Fireball, which he reportedly plans to christen Blue Heather II before racing her in Kent at Easter.
Prince Philip has been going around with a bandaged right wrist as a result of having had a cyst removed, a tumor that one London surgeon said was possibly a consequence of the Prince's polo playing. An old-fashioned and in fact discredited method of cyst removal involves a hearty smash with something like—well, a polo mallet, to release the fluid into surrounding tissues. Not surprisingly, Prince Philip elected surgery.