Officially now 99 -- but you and I know he's 101 -- venerable comedian-humanitarian Bob Hope has been honored with a chapel in the national cemetery in Los Angeles. The announcement was made to media by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Anthony J. Principi. Several members of the entertainer's family attended. The renaming of the chapel was the result of the passage of H.R. 4592 in Congress. In addition to serving as a place for contemplation, the chapel building also houses the administrative offices for the cemetery. More than 85,000 service personnel are buried there.
FAYE DANCER, BASEBALL GREAT, DIES
In the 1940s a young baseball star named Faye Dancer was the darling of American female sports. She was a standout, playing for the American Girls Professional Baseball League. As a matter of fact, the character Madonna portrayed in "A League of Their Own" was very much patterned after Dancer and her exploits. The Los Angeles Times says that Dancer played for half a dozen seasons, ending her career in 1950. She likely would have played longer had she not sustained a bad back injury during a slide into home plate. Along the way she wore the uniform of the Fort Wayne Daisies, the Minneapolis Millerettes and the Peoria Redwings. According to the publication, Dancer was a native of Los Angeles, growing up on the city's west side. Faye Dancer -- player from another era, another time -- was only 77.
ENTERTAINERS SENT SCAMPERING AT PALACE
First a streaker ran in front of the queen's motorcade during the early days of a multi-week celebration to honor 50 years on the throne for Queen Elizabeth II. Now the British Broadcast Corp. is reporting that a smoky fire over the weekend at Buckingham Palace caused the hurried evacuation of the building. Had the evacuation happened less than a day before, nearly 20 royals would have rushed into the street. They had been there for a special classical music concert. As it was, the principal evacuees were internationally known musicians, in the palace rehearsing for a special gala for the queen. That's the gala, you may remember, for which Sir Elton John pre-recorded his segment, becoming the first performer to ever give a command performance in the palace without a king or queen present. Among those hustled out of the building were Sir Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, Ozzy Osbourne, Annie Lenox and Phil Collins. The fire had started in a loft storage area. A large quantity of fireworks -- earmarked for use in the closing ceremonies for the jubilee -- was stored on the roof of the building, but was not involved in the blaze.
BOBBY KNIGHT MOVIE STAR?
After decades in the whirlwind of Indiana University basketball, less-than-mild-mannered coach Bobby Knight was kicked out of IU and landed a job as men's basketball coach at Texas Tech. Now a local newspaper in Lubbock says that Knight -- recently the subject of a made-for-cable biopic starring Brian Dennehy -- will soon appear opposite Jack Nicholson and Brian Sandler in a movie being planned for theatrical release. The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal is reporting that the movie will be called ... you had better sit down for this ... "Anger Management." The publication says that Knight is not the only "hot-headed" sportsman tapped to appear. There are indications that John McEnroe will be part of the plot. Although McEnroe hasn't thrown any chairs on the court, he has thrown quite a few tantrums. The film could have a summertime 2003 release date.
STRAIT TO CHANGE TOUR FOCUS
Award-winning country star George Strait says that he's giving up performing in huge stadiums. He says he prefers smaller venues to larger ones. Country Music Times says that Strait recently told the news provider that he "definitely had a great time doing stadiums, but I'm excited about seeing some faces again." He adds: "Not that 20,000-seat arenas are exactly intimate settings, but you can tell a difference, and I think it will be a fun change of pace." By the way, the final appearance on his current tour will be in San Antonio. It will mark the first time he's played the SBC Center there. Meanwhile, Jo Dee Messina has just announced the final details of a fall tour. It includes 21 cities and kicks off in Detroit on Sept 12.
BRITISH VIEWERS COULD SEE CHANGED BBC
When most people think about the British Broadcasting Corp. they think of a somewhat staid network, famous for its "Brit-com" shows and its exceptional worldwide short-wave coverage of the news. Now, according to the network, it could begin to "act more like its commercial rivals" in the wake of a new proposal from the British Office of Communications. Under the proposed provisions, a nationwide, wide-ranging overhaul of media would be undertaken. No longer would the BBC go it alone, operating much as Public Broadcast Service and National Public Radio do here in the States. The Hollywood Reporter says that the venerable "Beeb" would have to conform to many of the standards of commercial broadcasting in the United Kingdom, were the proposals to be put into play.
UPI DAILY SURVEY QUESTION NO. 346
PLEASE NOTE CHANGE OF E-MAIL ADDRESS
Recently I've become amazed at the amount of small trash that never seems to find its way into the dumpsters at my apartment building. On Saturday I watched a couple do minor repairs under the hood of their car and then leave the auto parts boxes on the ground as they drove away ... and I live in a fairly nice neighborhood. So, today's question: "Are things getting messier, or is it my imagination." Put MESSY in the subject line and send to email@example.com via the Internet. By the way, I'll have more to say about our new e-mail address in coming days.
RESULTS OF QUESTION NO. 341 (MISTAKE)
Last week we asked if you're ever mistaken for anyone famous. From a quick dip into the mailbox, here is a sampling of replies: Debra D says that she's often mistaken for Kathy Lee Gifford and is sometimes asked for her autograph. Sadly, though, DD can't stand her. Well, DD, I don't think you're alone. Amanda says there's a girl at her school, who is also on the ROTC drill team, who looks like her. One day Amanda's mom arrived to pick her up and dispatched her younger sister to go onto the playground and retrieve her. The younger sibling brought the other girl. KittyK says she was thrilled when one day someone mistook her for Drew Barrymore. Pat W, although never mistaken for her, says she thinks she looks somewhat like Priscilla Presley. Peggy says that several decades ago she was mistaken for Janis Joplin, especially when she had a raspy throat. Peggy, had she lived, I bet that Joplin (who wouldn't have taken care of herself the way Peggy has over the years) would today look like a train wreck. TOMORROW: More on dreams. GBA.