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One Last, Year-End Look at the Passing Parade of People in the News : Winning Smile

December 26, 1985|BETTY CUNIBERTI

WASHINGTON — View has revisited some of the people and places it reported on in the last several months. Among them:

--Hollywood's Masquers Club, which because of declining funds sold its building and moved.

--Jimmy and Ricky Sperry, blinded in an accident 11 years ago, who received cornea transplants in August.

--Balu Natarajan, who triumphed over 167 other youngsters to win the National Spelling Bee in June.

Spare Time

Balu's biggest challenge has been filling the time he used to spend studying words with his mother and father, who were born in India. For three years, all Balu's spare time between January and June was spent studying words.

Asked if he missed all that studying, Balu said, "I think so. It's become a way of life in our household. It's a family project."

He said he now has more time to play the piano and see his friends. And another new venture--high school--fills much of that spelling time. He plays on the freshman soccer team and pretty much blends into the scene. Many of his new schoolmates don't know he's the spelling champion, but every once in a while someone finds out anew and the attention "starts all over again," he said. "I take it in stride."

Despite his fame and riches (he has banked the $1,000 prize he won at the bee), Balu said he has not been bothered by attentive females.

"Nope," Balu said.

"He doesn't date yet," said Chanda Natarajan, Balu's father.

Looking back over all that work, Balu said it was indeed worth it, even though he hasn't used the word farrago since.

"I set a goal and I reached it," Balu said. "That makes you feel better on the whole."

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