Perhaps you remember an item in this space Jan. 12 about people being arrested in Tokyo for stealing minuscule amounts of electricity. Well, it has happened again - only not there this time. Prosecutors in Kassel, a city in central Germany, say they are investigating the case of a student apprehended by police as he tried to board a streetcar late one night. They suspected he had stolen the computer he was carrying, but he proved it was his. Not content to let the matter rest, however, they then accused him of swiping public property since he had been seen plugging the laptop into a socket at the station as he waited for his ride home. Oh, the estimated value of the power it had consumed: 25 cents.
During Sports Illustrated's 50-year existence, the magazine often has featured esoteric pursuits on its cover, among them fly-fishing and hot-air ballooning. Most often, however, the coveted cover has been devoted to athletes - or action shots - representing major spectator sports. In toting up the results for its golden anniversary, "SI" discovered that football has graced the covers of 663 issues, baseball 502, and basketball 450. Basketball, however, leads the way in individual superstars, with five. As you might imagine, the legendary Michael Jordan has appeared most often. Sports Illustrated's top 10 cover boys, the sport in which each participated, and the number of times he has been featured:
1. Michael Jordan (basketball) 49
2. Muhammad Ali (boxing) 37
3. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (basketball) (tie) Magic Johnson (basketball) (tie) Jack Nicklaus (golf) 22
6. Larry Bird (basketball) (tie) Pete Rose (baseball) (tie) Mike Tyson (boxing)15
9. Arnold Palmer (golf) (tie) Bill Walton (basketball) 14