heavy-handed Henry Harris, taught all the boys to fight almost before they
learned to walk. Roy was fighting in smokers when he was 13 and "whipping
grown men" when he was 15. He had 83 amateur fights (losing 10), and has
fought 21 times in two years as a professional—beating, among others, Charlie
Norkus and Bob Baker. He is a quiet, dark-haired fellow who now weighs 190
pounds; he is awkward, savage and smart in the ring and despite his relative
inexperience he seemed to be outthinking as well as outpunching Pastrano in the
Houston upset last week. He slipped Pastrano's jab and used his right. He
feinted with the right and threw left hooks. When Pastrano tried coming in,
head down, he used an uppercut. "Harris," said New Orleans Promoter
Allen Lacombe gloomily afterward, "made Pastrano look like a banana
Back in Cut and
Shoot, after the fight, Harris planned to go on with his $229-a-month job
teaching the fourth grade. (Robert Thomas, one of his pupils, had predicted:
"If he punches Pastrano as hard as he whupped me, there won't be nothing to
it.") Roy, who lives with his wife in a neat white cottage adjoining his
family's land, also continued to startle Cut and Shoot by 1) driving a black
Cadillac, and 2) wearing Bermuda shorts. But the Harris family proper was
unaffected—it still resides in the sprawling log house with a galvanized-iron
roof, imperfect windows, unclosable doors and fight posters on the walls. A
nine-foot alligator still lives in the pond out beyond the sweet gum trees.
must be getting hungry," said Roy's mother reflectively last week, as she
rocked in her rope-bottomed chair. "Hasn't eaten a dog in about a week as
far as we know."
everything in football, and a coach can hardly say no to a star halfback who
wants to take some equipment home for the summer; when the University of
Virginia's big, line-busting Jim Bakhtiar wondered if the school could ship him
1 football, 1 needle valve, 1 uniform, 1 helmet, 1 kickoff tee and 1
extra-point tee, Head Coach Ben Martin said, "Sure, Jimbo. It's as good as
there right now." This, it turned out, was not quite true. Bakhtiar—full
name: James Abol Hassen Bakhtiar—lives in Abadan, Iran, and Abadan is a long
way from Charlottesville, Va. Assistant Coach Ralph Hendrix (whom Martin
cunningly appointed his delegate in the matter) found this out almost
It took a half
day of telephoning just to find out how you best send a parcel to Abadan (air
express), and after that he had to stuff the gear into a worthy parcel. These
chores accomplished, he delegated Handyman Fielding Updike to carry on from
there. Updike departed with package. He soon returned. "Can't be
sealed," he said. "Customs inspection." Hendrix spent the evening
in moody thought and the next day solved the problem—he tied bowknots in the
twine around the parcel and sent Updike on his way again. Coach Martin was
looking out the window when Updike returned and began a play-by-play: "He's
slamming the door. He's hitching up his pants and talking to himself. He looks
mad. He's brought it back again!"
brought a list of what was needed to send a football uniform to Iran: a
commercial invoice in quadruplicate, a customs declaration in quadruplicate, an
insurance form in quadruplicate, a consular fee of $4.18 and a fee of $8.38 for
legalizing general power of attorney and designating an agent in Iran.
"Whatta they want a commercial invoice for?" cried Martin. "We're
not selling the damned uniform." Hollered Updike: "Don't holler at me,
holler at them!" Martin hollered by telephone for a half hour but got
nowhere. Then he called in his assistants. "What," one of them asked,
"is a commercial invoice form in quadruplicate?" Martin sighed.
"How the hell should I know? Just find one."
At this point the
coach believed that he saw light at the end of his tunnel. He seized the
telephone again and called the Iranian embassy in Washington. Did the embassy
know of Jim Bakhtiar and his great work in international relations? The embassy
did indeed. Encouraged, Martin tried to delegate the job again. It didn't work.
The polite voice at the embassy simply assured him that he would have no
trouble at all, and that anything Bakhtiar Khan wanted shipped to Iran was O.K.
with Iran. Then the phone went dead.
By the next day
Martin and his men had a commercial invoice. By the day after that they had it
and all the other forms filled out (Describe commodities in sufficient detail
to permit verification of the Schedule B.... Any person violating...Export
Control Regulations...is subject to a fine of not more than $10,000....), then
were ready, in fact, to try shipping the box again. Martin by now, however, was
becoming sensitive to the enemy at the express office. "Bring me a duffel
bag," he cried. It was delivered. Quickly he stuffed it with the football
gear. He seized his pen and wrote boldly: "Personal Effects of James
Bakhtiar" in quadruplicate on every piece of paper in the thick heap he had
accumulated. It worked. Railway Express accepted the bag with almost horrifying
matter-of-factness. Two days later, Seaboard & Western Airlines sent him a
wire assuring him that the "personal effects" were on their way
Only then did
Martin have time to mull, in fascination, the project he was furthering.
Bakhtiar, once back in Islam, proposes to suit up and kick field goals over
goal posts which his father—a wealthy doctor and Persian nobleman—has agreed to
set up in a public park. What will the citizenry of Abadan, Iran think of that?
Martin broke off to ask himself another question. What might not happen to the
mind and body of his sure-bet All-America if the boy tried to ship the uniform
back to the U.S. at summer's end? He leaped to his feet and sought his halfback
out. "Look, Jimbo," he said gently. "If you have any trouble—any
trouble at all—just leave that uniform in Abadan and forget it. If the worst
comes to the worst, next fall we'll play you in your tribal robes."