I know the Messrs. Ellsworth, Tenney and Shoemaker must have watering mouths dreaming about another chance to administer a licking to Nashua. If by some slip on the part of the canny Mr. Woodward, he were to sanction a match between his pretender and the king, I want to be the first to predict a victory for Swaps by a minimum of four lengths!
Again, though, let me congratulate Mr. Woodward. For indeed, he is a wise man.
Beverly Hills, Calif.
? Mr. Woodward and Nashua will be in Chicago this month, where they will be seeking victory in the Arlington Classic on July 16. He has said publicly that he hopes and expects Nashua to meet Swaps in a match race there. Swaps is also due in Chicago for the American Derby on Aug. 20.—ED.
When Mr Bayard Ashcroft's letter,
Boston Bird Watcher Walks With His Hero, appeared in your publication (SI, March 21), several of my friends urged that I write an article in "defense" of girl watching (as opposed to bird watching). I resisted on the ground that girl watching doesn't need defending against bird watching. We are not at war. True girl watchers no more oppose bird watchers than violinists oppose cellists or plasterers oppose plumbers.
However, with the continuing appearance of articles on and references to bird watching in SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, I am moved to clarify the girl-watching position.
First, I hasten to declare that some of my best friends are bird watchers. Indeed, some of my bird-watching friends are girl watchers!
The only point over which girl watchers and bird watchers sometimes disagree is the place each holds in the hierarchy of hobbies. Naturally, or I should say personally, I contend that the unexpected observation and quiet contemplation of a Late-Rising Pubthrush (for example) is a more rewarding experience than the sight of a Blue-Billed Barnswallow (if there is such a bird) rising from a thicket.
Yet I wouldn't carry this argument beyond the simple statement of my stand. After all, the butterfly collector thinks that both girl watchers and bird watchers are missing everything.
I believe further that there is very little reason why girl watching should be compared with bird watching in the first place. For one thing, bird watchers are concerned primarily with bird identification and only secondarily with the bird as a bird. The opposite is true of girl watchers. Whether the species is an Argyle-Ankled Classcutter or a Wide-Eyed Culturebug is of less importance than whether she is beautiful. In other words, a bird watcher may be crushed and demoralized when he fails to identify a purple bird with a yellow spot between her eyes, while a girl watcher will be both delighted and fulfilled by the vision of a beautiful redhead (even though he may not have the slightest idea whether she is a Carrot-Topped Minkmiser or a Flame-Tressed Tablehopper).
For another thing, the field trip is more important to bird watchers than to girl watchers. While the bird watcher is always on the alert for the out-of-place or the out-of-season, he is happiest when he is watching officially. Constant alertness, on the other hand, is basic to the very nature of the girl watcher. The field trip is but an occasional, almost casual, aspect of his hobby.
American Society of Girl