I must vent my steam about all the biographers who have attempted to scrape the tuxedo off Frank Sinatra (PEOPLE, May 31).
Certainly his flamboyant life-style has gained him recognition. But to someone who knows Sinatra's music, his performances, live and recorded, are worthy of a book five times as thick as Earl Wilson's. In Frank Sinatra's music, from its beginning to now, there has never been anything "false, fictionalized, boring and uninteresting." But until the true biography is created, only our hi-fis can sustain that fact.
Not that I dislike the talents of either Frank Sinatra or Earl Wilson. To the contrary, I admire their longevity. However, both are now beyond interest. And certainly not deserving of a PEOPLE cover story. Who really cares? Frank and Earl should take lessons from some truly great older living legends, i.e., Joan Crawford, Cary Grant and Garbo. Got the idea?
What Sinatra does in his private life is none of our business unless Sinatra himself wants it to be known. I would be more interested in reading a book on Sinatra the singer, actor and humanitarian.
Michael L. Stempel
On page 20 you show Mr. Wilson speaking with several people at Sardi's. You mention Paula Prentiss and Richard Benjamin, but you failed to mention the other man. He is Tony Roberts, a very fine actor who has starred in such movies as Serpico, Play It Again, Sam, and who is also a well-known Broadway star.
Margaret D. Hirshfeld
New York City
Please tell Frank that he needs a few more transplant plugs in the left frontal-temporal area.
Howard Bargman, M.D.
In all your photos of Queen Margrethe II, she is wearing a hat. Is that to cover the place where her hair was burned off from those candles she wore on her head as a child? I certainly hope the Danes do not continue this dangerous custom in 1976.
The custom is Swedish, introduced to Margrethe by her mother, who is a Swede. And they still do it on St. Lucia's day, Dec. 13—but very carefully.—ED.
I too am fascinated with the subject of modern heroes. But come on, guys...there is no mention of any female in the rather extensive interview with Joe McGinniss. Surely his criteria (a real achievement plus personal charisma plus symbolic value) can be applied to Dorothy Hamill, whose spirit caught the imagination of the world, better than it can to Secretariat. (A male horse!)
Charlotte J. Moore
New York City
In the Joe McGinniss article no mention is made of music and entertainment idols. Yet I'd hate to try and make it through a day without some John Davidson music, and my husband's the same way about Olivia Newton-John.
How does this fit into the hero concept? Are we regressing?
It would be interesting to know Mr. McGinniss' views.
Blanche C. Hooper
McGinniss replies: "Olivia Newton-John is not a national hero on the same scale with Lindbergh. We identify more with people who operate on a smaller scale because we're more comfortable there ourselves."—ED.
Tim Leary is a personal hero of mine and America's own home-grown prophet. Tim's recent books propose the use of technology for materializing the ancient human myths of "immortality," "going to heaven" and communication with higher intelligence (God?). These are the frontiers of the human psyche.
Solana Beach, Calif.
It seems strange to me that John Riley can take a regular criminal and bum, and write about him as some kind of folk hero. Anybody who has been in 29 jails in 11 years should not be written about or even mentioned again.
Isn't it illegal for a 13-year-old child like winetaster Peter Hanns Kornell to consume alcohol?
Peter's father replies: "When you taste you don't drink. Otherwise you would walk on your head. You take it on the tip of your tongue and spit it out."—ED.
Only a political persona non grata like Agnew dares to say that U.S. support of Israel undercuts Arab moderates and increases the power of Arab militants. Moderates don't expect or want U.S. politicians to withdraw their support of Israel. They ask only for objectivity and understanding.
Noha Habib McKenna
After reading that "Agnew formed alliances with Arab and other foreign businessmen and American real estate agents to earn some cash," Agnew's sudden anti-Zionism can be read as "Don't bite the hand that feeds you."
I am fuming. He flaunts his egomania when in reality he is the foremost flippant, fickle, felonious phony.
Bruce and Chrystie Jenner
The fact that Bruce Jenner must resort to training at home with the help of his wife is a real tribute to their dedication. It is also a good example of the United States' treatment of its amateur athletes. Good luck, Bruce, I'm behind you 100 percent, even if the United States Olympic Committee isn't.
As a longtime Simon-watcher I must salute the author, Leroy F. Aarons, and everyone connected with a perfectly organized and beautifully written report.
I was delighted to be pictured with Steve Ford in the charity fishing derby at Holiday Island, Ark. However, I am not a "Kansas City Baptist minister." I am in my 23rd year on television, and my outdoor show, The Sportsman's Friend, is syndicated in 69 markets.
The members of our square dance group are all loyal readers of PEOPLE. We don't usually agree on everything in your magazine, but we found the latest issue affected us all in the same way: we liked the Sinatra (Blue Eyes) cover, but we don't admire him as a person. Timothy Leary should be sealed into the cornerstone of the unstable John Hancock building in Boston. Ethel Kennedy and the rest of the clan turn us off. White tennis socks do not a hero make. Your Star Tracks pages were most interesting as always. And we all liked the article on Queen Margrethe. In short, your magazine is the best "conversation piece" we've ever had between breaks in square dancing.
Mrs. D.R. Boncasino
Earl Black well
Thank you for the article about me and my career in your May 24 issue. However, it amused me to read that building Celebrity Service was a piece of catered cake, especially when I recall that my partner, Ted Strong, and I worked 18 and 19 hours per day during most of those first few years. As a matter of fact, we couldn't even afford an assistant, so when one went out for lunch the other had to stay and mind the fort. It was fun though, and I would jump at the chance to do it all over again.
New York City