slice of life

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 21 March, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 21 March, 2006, 12:00am

From the South China Morning Post this week in 1973

The way the police saw it, the greatest problem they faced was the concentration of people in the colony.

Police commissioner Charles Sutcliffe explained that the force believed it was keeping the criminals on the run and that the previous year's frightening outbreak of violent crime was, at least, being contained.

The commissioner outlined this and other problems facing the police in an interview with the SCMP's sister paper, the China Mail.

Later in the week the commissioner hit out at repeated suggestions of corruption within the ranks of the police force.

'What corruption?' he asked one reporter who raised the question at a press conference. 'Do you know of any corruption? If so, please tell us. Somebody is trying to create a scandal and will not be satisfied until one is found. There is a lot of loose talk about corruption.'

President Suharto was sworn in for a second five-year term as Indonesia's head of state.

He made a brief acceptance speech in which he pointed out that the occasion was historic for the country because it was the first time its president had been installed by elected representatives of the people.

By 1973, Suharto had wielded effective power in Indonesia for seven years but was only sworn in as full president in March 1968.

Since assuming power in the wake of the 1965 communist coup attempt, which he crushed with the help of the army, Suharto was credited with giving the country an impressive measure of economic and political stability.

Rolls-Royce Motors, makers of the world-famous luxury cars for which buyers waited up to two years, went on sale to the highest bidder.

The bids for the company, in liquidation, had to be in by May 1, accompanied by a down payment of US$17 million.

The company, which produced about 2,400 cars a year, was split off from the old Rolls-Royce Ltd when the empire collapsed in February 1971.

A guilt-stricken mother drowned her healthy baby boy because she believed the child was the result of a brief extra-marital affair.

'The baby looked like my lover, not my husband,' the 25-year-old told police in Tokyo. 'I took my lover a picture of it and he agreed. I killed the baby for fear of losing my husband's love.'

The police said blood tests proved the baby was her husband's, not her lover's.

Dame Margot Fonteyn had the audience entranced when piercing screams shattered the hush hanging over the auditorium in the Lee Theatre.

One after another, a row of women leapt to their feet as a huge rat scampered under their chairs, leading to mass abandonment of all etiquette.

Asked if the interruption had worried her, Dame Margot replied: 'The audience clapped at the end of the performance, then there was silence and then they clapped again. I wondered if the rat had reappeared for a curtain call.'

The largest family in Spain ate its way through 26 pounds of potatoes, six dozen eggs, 11 pounds of meat, five pints of olive oil and 20 loaves of bread a day.

The family comprised the mother, father and their 18 offspring. Mr and Mrs Rojas of Andalusia had married 25 years earlier and had produced 19 children; one had died.

In lawn bowls, a family rink consisting of sisters Bea Silva and Alicia Remedios, cousin 'Apple' Silva and brother Roberto Silva - all of Recreio - won the inaugural Colony's Mixed Rinks title to become the first holders of the Scott Trophy.

They defeated Queenie Tsang, Marie Remedios, Jackie Tso and Cesar Coelho 21-16 in the morning's semi-final, then staved off a strong challenge by Edwin Chok, 'Freckles' Barros, Elvie Chok and Frankie Barros in the afternoon's final to win narrowly by 18-17.