A few years ago, Sinatra had us all crying into our beers because Saturday night was the loneliest night of the week. Today, of course, Saturday night is the funniest night of the week (some weeks, anyway) and the reason is those three little words--NBC's Saturday Night. To see what makes this rowdy bunch of zanies really tick, we sent Associate Editor John Blumenthal and free-lance writer Lindsay Maracotta to interview the gang--including Chevy Chase. Blumenthal, our humor genius in residence (he loves to be called a genius), reports that he hasn't had so much fun since the pigs ate his brother.
Playboy, May, 1977, Volume 24, Number 5. Published monthly by Playboy, Playboy Building, 919 North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60611. Subscriptions: In the United States, its possessions and Canada, $30 for three years, $22 for two years, $12 for one year, elsewhere $25 per year. Allow 30 days for new subscriptions and renewals. Change of address: Send both old and new addresses to Playboy, P.O. Box 2420, Boulder, Colorado 80302, and allow 30 days for change. Marketing: Nelson Futch, Marketing Manager: Lee Gottlieb, Director of Public Relations; Michael J. Murphy, Circulation Promotion Director. Advertising: Henry W. Marks, Advertising Director; Harold Duchin, National Sales Manager, 747 Third Avenue, New York, New York 10017; Sherman Keats, Associate Advertising Manager; John Thompson, Central Regional Manager, 919 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, Ill. 60611; Atlanta, Richard Christiansen, Manager, 3340 Peachtree Rd., N.E.; Detroit, William F. Moore, Manager, 818 Fisher Bldg.; Los Angeles, Stanley L. Perkins, Manager, 8721 Beverly Blvd.; San Francisco, Robert E. Stephens, Manager, 417 Montgomery St.
Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford and Henry Kissinger have recently been named fathers--of illegitimate children in Washington, D.C. There's a rule in the capital that mothers of illegitimate babies who want to put them up for adoption have to name the fathers. If the mother won't name the father, weeks of bureaucratic red tape slow adoption proceedings. Rumor has it that if you drop a famous name, the adoption judge won't press you for details and will allow the baby to be adopted right away.
Kermit Schafer, known to fans as Mr. Blooper, began compiling broadcasting blunders over 25 years ago. Since then, he has collected enough so-called bloopers to fill 15 books, 30 record albums and a feature-length movie. The following is a compilation of Schafer's favorite blirty doopers:
Southern novelist Flannery O'Connor was only once tempted to travel Hollywoodward. In her first book, Wise Blood, she put a character who spots a mummified humanoid in a natural-history museum, wrests the tiny ancient from display and bears it about, trailing cerements, convinced that it's the Messiah. So when O'Connor heard that the Roy Rogers--Dale Evans Museum, a fortlike structure 100 miles east of Los Angeles, offers to public view America's favorite palomino, Trigger--stuffed--she was sorely tempted. But failing health made her skip the still-life rodeo in the high desert of California, and she rode off into the sunset right there in Georgia instead.
My, my, she sure can sing. Emmylou Harris has arrived and is one class act. Her third album, Luxury Liner (Warner Bros.), entered the country charts at number ten, and it was clear sailing from there on in. The record has a reliable crew (old friends Hank DeVito, Glen D. Hardin, Dolly Parton, Fayssoux Starling, Emory Gordy and producer Brian Ahern) and great charts by the Louvin Brothers (who gave Emmylou her first hit, If I Could Only Win Your Love). Harris has a voice that can take the simplest lyrics and make them mysterious. Her new version of Gram Parsons' She will break your heart. And when she has a truly challenging set of words, the effect is something else again. The poetry on the album is supplied by Chuck Berry (the cherry-red C'Est la Vie) and Townes Van Zandt (the cryptic epic Pancho and Lefty). The latter may be about the famous Mexican bandit Villa and his right-hand man, Lefty. The relationship is not stated and, for that matter, we're not sure what happens. Pancho gets laid low in the desert, and his friend, ex-lover or assassin, Lefty ("He just did what he had to do"), moves to a cheap hotel in Cleveland. Now "All the federales say/Could of had him any day/Only let him slip away/Hang around/Out of kindness I suppose." Vulnerable. Vindictive. Eerie. You may not know what happened, but something did, and it was important. We wish there were more songs like Pancho and Lefty on this album, in the world, wherever.
We asked one of our contributors who is familiar with the subject of Watergate to review Stonewall (Simon & Schuster), by Richard Ben-Veniste and George Frampton of the U.S. special prosecutor's office. We received this startling account:
Rock-climbing concentrates the mind wonderfully. With your toes jammed into cracks in the stone, finger tips clinging to the tiniest crevice in the cliff face, your body hanging in space 100 feet above the nearest flat place, thoughts of the ephemera of everyday life vanish.
Everything is first-rate about The Domino Principle except its misbegotten plot--a sagging spider's web in which a group of ruthless, anonymous conspirators springs a convicted murderer from prison to assassinate an unnamed big shot who lives on a heavily guarded estate on the California coast. Who's the victim supposed to be? Someone not unlike Nixon, perhaps, since the house vaguely resembles San Clemente and flags are flown at half-mast once the job is done. But why rub him out? To save the taxpayer money? And why not recruit a professional hit man for the job? Adapted by Adam Kennedy from his novel, Domino Principle ends as a maddening guessing game. Gene Hackman, flawless as the reluctant gun for hire, and Can-dice Bergen, cast against type as his unglamorous wife, do everything they can do with this stuff, aided by Richard Widmark, Mickey Rooney, Edward Albert and Eli Wallach, representing the conspirators. Producer-director Stanley Kramer, who often cuts a big subject down to size as pretentious pop entertainment (Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, et al.), obviously intended to raise a number of searching questions about a world in which CIA types seem to pull all the strings. But Domino falls flat because it makes you wait for answers--until finally you give up drumming your fingers and just don't give a damn.
The public first heard of film makerGerard Damianowhen his comic paean to fellatio, "Deep Throat," was released in 1972--and given Screw magazine's first 100 percent Peter Meter rating. That film has gone on to become one of the longest-running--and largest-grossing--motion pictures in history; it has also resulted in some obscenity indictments and convictions; notably, that of veteran porn performer Harry Reems, who played the psychiatrist who diagnoses Linda Lovelace's misplaced clitoris. Damiano, meanwhile, has made other films, including "The Devil in Miss Jones," "The Story of Joanna," "Let My Puppets Come" and, most recently, "Odyssey" (see page 40B). On a visit to the West Coast, he was buttonholed by free-lance writers Joseph Block and Llana Lloyd, to whom he granted this interview:
Scheduled for telecast by ABC-TV in early May (check program guides for the precise date and time), Breaking Up stars Lee Remick as a sheltered young suburban matron whose 40ish husband (Granville Van Dusen) abruptly informs her, "I'm not happy. I haven't been for a long time.... I want to get out, baby." This two-hour David Susskind special is a shade facile at times but, nevertheless, moving and as all-American as The Mating Game fought to a draw. As JoAnn Hammil, a rejected lady floundering through the psychological upheavals of divorce, Remick looks like one of those bright wives and mothers in a TV commercial who are shocked to discover that their cakes no longer rise, their floors don't shine, their creme shampoo hasn't made them sexually unbeatable and the roof is about to be blown off their tidy nest. It doesn't help matters that her best friend's husband and other amiable predators rush to convince her that jumping into bed with them might be therapeutic. This is basically a one-woman show--one that gives Remick a chance to show what a subtle, accomplished actress she is.
A few weeks ago, I was invited to have an affair with the wife of a neighbor. We met in a hotel room for lunch and fucked our eyeballs out. Later, as we were dressing, she noticed that I had given her a slight hickey on the breast. With some scorn, she looked at me and said, "It was nice, but you're kind of new at this, aren't you?" I asked her what she meant. She said that partners who were experienced at illicit get-togethers didn't leave clues, that the hickey was not the mark of a man, that it was very high school. I'd never heard that before. Is leaving no clues common etiquette?--D. K., New York, New York.
The Emperor's new clothes. Clothes make the man. A wolf in sheep's clothing. Certainly, clothes are the one mask people wear to prevent others from seeing their real selves. In our dauntless search to discover the sexual truths that lurk behind the most fortified façades, we asked 100 men and women two simple questions: "What kind of clothes do you wear when you want to turn on the opposite sex and what do they wear that turns you on?"
The conviction of Hustler publisher Larry Flynt in Cincinnati in February is the latest in a series of censor-ship cases inspired by the Supreme Court's pernicious 1973 community-standards doctrine of obscenity. Like the Memphis Deep Throat case and the Screw prosecution in Wichita, this is not just an attempt to keep offending material out of one community; it is an effort to dictate moral standards to the entire country. If anyone doubts that, here is Cincinnati prosecutor Simon Leis, Jr., crowing over his victory: "Moral boundaries have been established in this county and this country which will put limitations on how far smut peddlers will be allowed to go" (emphasis ours).
On the second Saturday in October l975, a live, 90-minute comedy show, titled, appropriately, NBC's "Saturday Night," premiered on that network in what used to be the time slot for "Tonight Show" reruns. It featured a group of young, rubbery-faced unknowns, billed as the Not Ready for Prime Time Players, and a guest host of the week, George Carlin, cavorting in a series of sketches, commercial parodies and take-offs on the news. The quality of the material ranged from funny to insane, with occasional references that only a bona fide graduate of the late frerk subculture could appreciate. But its most salient characteristic proved to be a total disregard for any of television's traditional taboos: Viewers soon found themselves witnessing things they never expected to see on the tube. Among the targets satirized were cripples, homosexuals, bizarre sexual practices, politicians, the Pope, all minority groups, the aged and the recently deceased--in other words, just about anything.
Dr. Mina Robbins, a clinical psychologist who treats patients with sexual dysfunction, is an associate professor of human development at California State University in Sacramento. Dr. Gordon Jensen is a professor of psychiatry and pediatrics at the University of California at Davis. Last October, the two traveled to Montreal for the International Congress of Sexology. They delivered a paper on the multiple male orgasm. The presentation may not have been as earth-shaking as Einstein's paper on the general theory of relativity, but it was a lot more fun.
A supercilious British bromide informs us that "Summer was made for gin." But so were autumn, winter and spring. Despite gin's identification with the martini and gin and tonic, it happens to be a gregarious mixer--a spirit for all seasons.
It was in Cambridge, back in February 1969, that the event took place. I made no attempt to record it at the time, because, fearing for my mind, my initial aim was to forget it. Now, some years later, I feel that if I commit it to paper' others will read it as a story and, I hope, one day it will become a story for me as well. I know it was horrifying while it lasted--and even more so during the sleepless nights that followed--but this does not mean that an account of it will necessarily move anyone else.
Young Patti D'Arbanville's life story reads something like a contemporary fairy tale. At the age of two, she was entered in a baby beauty contest by her parents and made her professional debut as the Ivory Soap baby in television commercials. When she was 15, a chance encounter at Greenwich Village's legendary Figaro Café resulted in her playing in two Andy Warhol films. Shortly thereafter, she was noticed in New York's hip Max's Kansas City bar and wound up with a part in John Schlesinger's Midnight Cowboy. The story goes that she then became Cat Stevens' girlfriend, and when she left him for Mick Jagger, Stevens wrote a song about her called Lady D'Arbanville, a ballad with lyrics just this side of melancholia ("I loved you my lady / Though in your grave you lie"). The song, one of the most memorable on Stevens' album Mona Bone Jakon, became a hit in six countries. And Patti herself is on the verge of becoming a hit in her own right. While in Paris in 1970, playing a role in the film La Maison, she came to the attention of photographer David Hamilton. Six years later, he chose her for the lead part in his first feature film, Bilitis. Hamilton's film, based on the Pierre Louÿs classic, is the story of the awakening of a sexual innocent attending a boarding school in the south of France. Hamilton is world-renowned for his erotic photographs, which deal almost exclusively with the fragile sensuousness of young girls. "I like to photograph their beauty before they are aware of it themselves," he says of his best models. These pictures, taken especially for Playboy, say all there is to say about the fascinating erotic/innocent admixture that is the essence of Patti D'Arbanville and about David Hamilton's camera wizardry.
May be this Article should be titled The Lawlessness of the Long-Distance Runner, since most of the bikes pictured here are against the law. Or, more accurately, the law is against these machines--the absurd law that man shall not travel faster than 55 mph. Perhaps it's the Shah's way of getting back at Lawrence of Arabia, who was known to turn a (text continued on page 184)Runners(continued from page 107) ton (i.e., break 100 mph) on a Brough Superior. These bikes start at 55 mph. Flat out, they have better gas consumption than most four-wheel vehicles have standing still. If there is an exception to the rule of bureaucrats, this stable of touring bikes and café racers should be it. To contemplate owning one, you must be prepared to...uh...live outside the law and the sometimes meaningless restrictions of the society of man. But, then, that's the point, isn't it? Escape.
There's always been one house like a white man's house in the village of Dilolo. Built of brick, with a roof that bounced signals from the sun. You could see it through the mopane trees as you did the flash of paraffin tins the women carried on their heads, bringing water from the river. The rest of the village was river mud, gray, shaped by the hollows of hands, with reed thatch and poles of mopane from which the leaves had been ripped like fish scales.
The pictures you see on these pages are atypical--for the simple reason that Sheila Mullen is almost never alone. Our gatefold girl for May is a one-woman crowd scene. She always stands out. When we tracked her down, she was sunning her 5'9" frame on the side lines of the athletic field of Valley College in Van Nuys, California. The parking lot was filled with 'Vettes, clunkers and bikes. The owners were out on the field playing a rough game of tackle football. "I'm the team mascot," says Sheila. "On Saturdays we play football. On Sundays, softball. On Thursdays we go to the races. It's a very unofficial team. We'll play anybody at anything, if you're willing to bet on it. I hold the bets." Sheila explains that her friends are all gamblers. "They learned to lay odds in little league and pony league. They'll bet on anything. When I started going out with Tom, the quarterback, everyone had side bets on how long he'd last." The team comes off the field. Guys with names like Pinhead, Mildew, Wimp, Dog drink beer and casually discuss physical destruction, the injuries received in a life of sport. Sheila smiles. "I never get hurt. I just get tan." Miss May confesses that her nickname is Motor Mouth Mullen. "I talk a lot. I tend to digress. It comes from growing up in a family with eight kids. Did you know three of my sisters were on The Dating Game at once? My boyfriend is always stopping me and asking, 'What question started this rap?' When I got my car, I requested personalized license plates with the letters MMM, for Motor Mouth Mullen. People trying to guess what the letters stand for go, 'Mmm?' I say, 'You got it.' "Where were we? What question started this? It doesn't matter. The game resumes. Sheila's team wins.
Golf didn't come naturally to the housewife who was taking up the game, and the basic problem seemed to be a defective grip. "I'm afraid this may be putting it crudely, Mrs. Wallingford," said the frustrated teaching pro, "but I suggest you take hold of the club as you would your husband's erect organ."
A sleek $17,000,000 Lockheed 1011 had all but completed its New York--to--Miami nonstop run on the night of December 29, 1972, when a landing-gear safety light failed to illuminate on the big jet's instrument panel. Captain Robert Loft, in charge of Eastern Air Lines flight 401, aborted the landing. On instructions from the Miami tower, the plane curved west into the darkness over the Everglades; the time was 11:35 and there was no moon. Clearance was granted for the Whisperliner to continue west at 2000 feet while the flight crew checked the light. Both Loft, who was operating the radio, and copilot Albert Stockstill, who was flying the airplane, regarded the incident as an annoyance rather than an emergency. But for them and 174 others aboard flight 401, the holidays were about to end in grotesque horror. A bizarre sequence--starting with failure of a $12 light fixture--was leading inexorably to the first jumbo-jet crash in history.
For the coming seasons, the one thing you won't want to gamble on in Monte Carlo--or anywhere else, for that matter--is your wardrobe. Elegant simplicity is the key phrase, as exemplified by three-piece suits with contrasting vests, easygoing shirt and slack combinations and unconstructed cotton jackets that can be worn with a shirt and tie or no shirt at all. Colors, too, will be uncomplicated; expect the all-white look to be an odds-on favorite. And for collegiate fun, there's a terrycloth varsity cardigan on the market that's sure winner. Your move, sports.
The following test is geared to show you just how stupid you really are, thus sending you out into the world armed with an impenetrable shield of stupidity: Convinced you know nothing, you will become an extremely good listener, and thus make everybody else marvelously happy; and what nicer goal in life is there? Good luck, dummy.
She stood alone and completely calm on the empty railway platform, her long coat tugged by the train's draft. The first thing he noticed in the overbright lights of the station was the lustrous bones in her face. Boarding the train, she looked straight ahead and carried a small suitcase. Then she disappeared. Once the train pulled out on its journey to Ventimiglia, he walked the length of it and didn't see her. He could only conclude that she was in one of the first-class sleepers.
About 5:30 on the afternoon of September 15, 1974, a young man leaned over the toprail balcony of the multilayered Le Drugstore, a combined boutique, newsstand and snack bar on Boulevard Saint Germain in Paris. From the pocket of a gray jacket, he pulled a U.S.-made hand grenade. With an abrupt gesture, he dropped it among the shoppers and diners below. The toll: two dead, 34 wounded.
The lady you see here is Kellie Everts. As you can also see, she's a weight lifter--and we're not kidding. Now if you think that's weird, you have the wrong idea about what weight lifting does for ladies. It doesn't make their muscles into magic mountains like Arnie Schwarzenegger's. It can make their muscles look like those on Kellie Everts, who's been Miss Body Beautiful U. S. A. and Miss Nude Universe. Nothing more need be said. This way to the bar bells, girls.
Two years ago, Playboy published the story of Thomas Francis Mistrot, a 28-year-old Texas State Prison inmate serving a life sentence as a habitual criminal. Mistrot was an orphan raised in state institutions, and the three felonies that qualified him for a life sentence consisted of twice stealing coins from vending machines as a teenager and later giving a tiny amount of marijuana to two Dallas undercover cops in lieu of some money he owed them. The laws had since changed, but not Mistrot's sentence. The case inspired hundreds of letters, both to Playboy and to Governor Dolph Briscoe. After more than a year of negotiations with some very hard-nosed Texas officials, Tom Mistrot was released on parole.
Unlike most of what's available at the pro shop, the two rackets on this page were not designed with a tennis star in mind. (Haven't you ever wondered what on earth Bjorn Borg's tennis needs could possibly have to do with your own? If you don't have his strokes or his reflexes, why are they always trying to sell you on the advantages of his tennis racket?) The oversized Prince and the graphite-framed Aldila Cannon have been designed to meet the more pronounced needs of the nonprofessional (who said hacker?). Having long been a seeker of the perfect tennis weapon, and even longer a fully developed hacker, I set forth to road-test these tennis machines.
They say that opposites attract; and when it comes to two current fashion trends, that couldn't be more true. One is the interest in antique clothes, the other is space-age fabrics. In the case of antique clothes, what was once a way for the hippie counter-culture to flaunt its independence has turned into an appreciation of the quality and aesthetics incorporated in yesterday's threads. So, as the supply of hip-looking antique duds dries up, expect to see an abundance of well-made vintage reproductions appearing on the market. Which brings, us to the second trend: metallic fabrics spawned by the space age. The shiny jackets of the Dallas Cowboys cheer-leaders, for example.) The potential of this material is just being explored, but it shares with antique clothes an integrity of craftsmanship and design--rare qualities today.
Like it or not, it's a right-handed world. Statistically speaking, anywhere from a third to a half of the world's population is born left-handed, but only one out of ten is an "out of the closet" southpaw by the time he reaches adulthood. Why? Simple. It's easier to be a righty, because the world makes it tough to be a lefty. Ever see a left-handed dentist or a left-handed barber? They may exist, but where do they buy the tools of their trade, which are almost universally made only for righties? Put a deck of playing cards in your left hand, fan them and try to read the numbers. Try getting a number in a phone booth with your left hand. Try working a monkey wrench or a pair of scissors with your left hand.