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Royal Baptism a Far Cry From Traditional Tearjerker

Princess Beatrice proved to be no crybaby as she was baptized by the Most Rev. John Habgood, Archbishop of York, at St. James’s Palace in London. The 19-week-old daughter of the Duke and Duchess of York let out just one quick cry as water from the Jordan River was poured on her forehead during the 30-minute private ceremony. The princess’s baptism was delayed until after her father, Prince Andrew, a Royal Navy lieutenant, returned last week from a tour of duty in the Far East. The newest member of the British royal family was part of an old family tradition, wearing a christening robe that was first worn by Queen Victoria’s eldest son in 1842.

--Four seasonal visitors to the White House put in a good word for former national security aide Oliver L. North. Members of a pro-military student group, dressed as Santa and Mrs. Claus and two elves, appeared at a White House gate to hand out candy canes and letters asking President Reagan to pardon North. The four also visited offices of news organizations and North’s attorneys, and delivered a stocking full of coal to independent counsel Lawrence E. Walsh, who is prosecuting North in the Iran-Contra affair. The petition from “Santa” said: “Only you, Mr. President, can give Ollie North the gift that I, and tens of millions of Americans, would like to see him have for Christmas this year--a full and unconditional pardon.” The students belong to the Student Defense Alliance, campus wing of the Center for Peace and Freedom.

--Just in case Beverly Sills is at loose ends now that she is leaving her post as New York City Opera general director, two friends traded suggestions for her future. Mike Wallace of the CBS News program “60 Minutes” suggested, in his toast at a party for Sills at the Plaza Hotel in New York, that she become mayor of New York, or as he put it, “her honor, the prima donna.” Earlier, at a reception before the dinner, New York Mayor Edward I. Koch suggested that Sills become a TV interviewer. Sills, who formerly was a coloratura superstar with the opera, seemed ready for job ideas. “Interesting things are being offered to me. I feel a third career is somewhere out there right around the corner.”


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