THE Legal Department really, really, really wants Solicitor-General Daniel Fung to be the next Attorney-General. Or so our sources tell us. Parts of the Legal Department do, anyway. He's a fine lawyer, they say, although his presentational skills are a lot better when he's not reading slavishly from a prepared speech. And all he needs is a bit more time to learn about administration. Maybe. But wasn't tighter administration precisely what we'd been told the Legal Department was belatedly working on after the Graham Grant affair? Who administers the administrators so they don't mess up for lack of experience? Watch out for the future A-G's regular appearances before specially convened meetings of the Legco Panel on administration of justice and legal services and grillings by the Public Accounts Committee. DONALD Tsang, the bow-tie toting financial secretary, likes a bit of publicity. So he was particularly chuffed that RTHK chose to make him one of the subjects of its series of documentaries on top civil servants. Not one to miss an opportunity for maximum coverage, he also invited a group of journalists to lunch at his new Shouson Hill home. The two facts are not unconnected. What he forgot to tell the hungry hacks was that their gorging would take place in the full glare of the RTHK television lights. This has not won him brownie points with the lunchers, who were rather put out at this intrusion of their privacy. Not that journalists are professionally opposed to media exposure. But courtesy is courtesy, just the same. ANOTHER thing about Donald, if we're not mistaken, is that he is still walking about freely. Earlier promises to have himself strapped to a mast, like the mythical hero Ulysses, have gone unfulfilled. So too have his plans to fill colleagues' ears with wax to keep them deaf to the siren song of the legislature. No Finance Branch officials have been seen installing masts in Legco or elsewhere about town, just in case any sirens start singing unexpectedly. Nor has Mr Tsang been walking about with bowls of wax at the ready. That may be a deliberate ploy. After all, if his colleagues' ears were stuffed, how would they know the sirens were singing? Could they react in time to strap him down? But the bottom line is that both he and his staff are still physically unprotected from siren calls for tax cuts, profligate spending and free lunches. So what was he doing in Legco this week actually promising to listen to what legislators had to say? How could he be offering to 'consider very carefully' the proposals which emerged during the debate on Allen Lee's call for measures to stimulate the economy? Doesn't he know the risks? The last thing we need is a financial secretary who actually listens to the public. What does he think this is, a democracy or something? CHINESE laundrymen are all at sea. The Royal Navy still wants someone to go below deck and wash sailors' socks for them. But no one quite knows whether the Hong Kong Chinese dhobis who have been scrubbing everything from ratings' winter woollies to officers' dress-shirts for the last 60-odd years will be doing the job after 1997. After that, Hong Kong's other laundering business may be all that's left. Not that the supply of willing washers has dried up just yet. Nine laundrymen went off to Britain in September after vetting by the Royal Navy here, and another one left for Blighty in October. But there's the rub. Who's going to do the vetting when the navy finally leaves HMS Tamar? Various options have been agitated around the washtub, including the possibility of hanging this relic of empire out to dry and installing coin-operated laundries on her majesty's ships. But it is now 99 per cent certain that the laundry contract will be put out to tender. We are assured the Hong Kong crews are not all mono-lingual galley slaves who never go ashore and don't know what's about to hit them. They are well-organised and are absolutely determined to keep the business. If they can put in the best bid, they'll get the work. But what if a Hong Kong contractor does get the job? Can the men who go on board still be recruited from a Special Administrative Region of China?