• U.S.

People, Aug. 12, 1940

4 minute read

Two young men of 77 showed the world that they are not superannuated: Henry Ford in celebration of his birthday took a ride for photographers on the light (12 Ib.) English bicycle on which he likes to take a three-mile spin every evening after supper; Connie Mack (Cornelius McGillicudy), manager of the Philadelphia Athletics, donned mask, chest protector and catcher’s mitt to demonstrate the technique which got him a job as catcher with the Washington Senators in 1886.

“The American people have handsomely supported, showered wealth on me, and now I want to do something to express my gratitude. . . .” So said Ely Culbertson, 49, onetime (1907-13) anarchist and Social Revolutionist in Europe, now longtime U. S. bridge tycoon. His method of expressing his gratitude: running for the Democratic nomination for Congressman-at-large in Connecticut.

Vermont’s tousled-haired, horticulturist Governor, George D. Aiken, proposed to his opponent for Republican Senatorial nomination that they jointly forswear roadside political advertising. His reason: “A wild clematis is far more attractive to our guests than either your face or mine on the side of a tree or barn.”

Three Belgian refugee children were returned from Portugal to their father in Brussels: Princess Josephine Charlotte, 12, Crown Prince Baudouin, 9, Prince Albert, 6, offspring of King Leopold III.

Finding vegetables one food category in which England can be self-sufficient, British food experts recommended a war diet long on vegetables, short on meat. Snorted Vegetarian George Bernard Shaw, 84: “There is nothing wrong with the official meatless and eggless ration, which is virtually my own diet. I cannot, however, guarantee that England will become a nation of Bernard Shaws on it. That would be too much to hope for.”

Speaking of music in wartime, British Poet Stephen Spender reported in his otherwise literate September Journal: “[T. S.] Eliot said that he did not care to listen to Beethoven so much as formerly just now. We both agreed on Bach and Gluck for the war.”

Captured by the German Armies last May was Sir Lancelot Oliphant, British Ambassador to Belgium, a tall dome-headed career diplomat. From Berlin last week came a report that Sir Lancelot, still in custody in northern Germany, stood on his diplomatic prerogatives, flatly refused to go to an air-raid shelter when R. A. F. bombers appeared. “I am the British Ambassador,” he snorted, “and I bloody well will not go down when the British planes are overhead.”

On the White House lawn Democratic Vice-Presidential Nominee Henry Wallace and Attorney General Robert Jackson put on an exhibition of boomerang throwing for cameramen (see cut). Before News-photographer Byron Rollins, who was snapping them, could get out of the way, one of the boomerangs came back, knocked him down, cut a deep gash in his scalp.

In Detroit, soft-spoken Negro Bandleader Edward Kennedy (“Duke”) Ellington announced that after five years he had finished composing Boola, a three-hour opera on “the authentic history of the American Negro.” Said Ellington, “You can’t play swing forever.”

Among refugees who arrived in North America last week were: Poet Robert William Service, short, red-faced, British-born author of many a hairy-chested ballad (The Cremation of Sam McGee, Shooting of Dan McGrew), resident of France for the past 28 years; Mrs. Somerset Maugham, wife of the British author; Baron Maurice (“Momo”) de Rothschild, soft, luxury-loving French representative of the famed international banking family; Mrs. Dorothy Round Little, British ten-nist, twice winner of the Wimbledon singles, and son; three waifish guests of J. Pierpont Morgan: George Harry Vivian Smith, 6, Ann Smith, 1, Lord Primrose, 11, son of the Earl of Rosebery; Lady Byng, widow of onetime Field Marshal Sir Julian Hedworth George Byng, World War I hero of Vimy Ridge. Said Lady Byng of the bombing of the British village in which she had lived: “It was a bit wearying.”

To celebrate the end of his first year in Hollywood (during which he did not get around to making a single picture), impish young Actor Orson Welles gave a cocktail party for the press, announced that he was actually beginning production on a picture, Citizen Kane, of which he will be producer, director, star. Welles had so garbled the script for it that even R. K. O. officials did not know what it would be about.

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