Royal Watch: When last we checked in with the perfect couple, Charles and Diana, the British tabloids were saying they weren't the perfect couple. Even some of the more respectable newspapers in London were wondering if divorce was in the offing when, on their sixth anniversary, Charles was found to be off in Scotland shooting small animals while Diana was back home with the children. And they had spent five weeks apart.

Everything has now changed, however. The British press now describes the couple as "radiantly happy." The queen reportedly spoke sharply to them on the matter of appearances and now sources are saying everything is normal in the Charles-Diana marriage: Like all marriages, it has its ups and downs. And besides, that pack of reporters whose entire careers are based on the uninteresting activities of the British royal family needs those ups and downs. As one of the Fleet Street pack reportedly said, "It's a way of keeping stories going. You get hold of an angle that may or may not be true, you write it for a few weeks and then, when you need something fresh, you knock it down."

Out and About

Young Ron Reagan is off trying for more success in the world of television, trading on his daddy's name. In fact, in his first television special, the president's son emphasizes it; the title of his Cinemax comedy special is "Ron Reagan IS the President's Son." In the show airing Jan. 15, the son of Ronald plays himself as a TV journalist on a fluff interview morning talk show called "Up and at 'Em, USA." He goes everywhere tailed closely by Secret Service guards who would rather be stationed in Beirut than following the first son around. He does talk warmly about all the time he spent hunting and fishing with dad, who everyone knows wasn't around much. And part of the fun he has with his dad, he says, is when they ride motorcycles together. He then produces a black leather jacket adorned with the presidential seal on the back and bearing the embroidered legend, "Helmet Laws Suck" ...

Hospital Report: Former first lady Betty Ford is reported in good condition at the Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage, Calif., where she was taken after beginning to feel weak after dinner on Tuesday. Ford, who underwent heart bypass surgery last month, reportedly was "feeling quite good" yesterday and was to stay in the hospital only another day or two for observation. No details were released as to what caused the weakness ...

Washington needs a mayor like Edward I. Koch now that movie theater ticket prices here have unceremoniously gone to $6. When theater chains in New York City raised their prices to $7, Koch called for a boycott. Koch said he received 334 letters in two days, all but two supportive. He says he will continue his campaign, which could include pickets and handing out leaflets ...

It's not easy retiring from the bar business. Al Chadsey, who once owned the Pierce Street Annex, and Cathy Eley, who worked at Rumors, have opened Chadsey's, a new bar at 21st and M streets. Chadsey decided he had retired prematurely when he discovered he missed the ringing of the cash register. He describes the new place as a "down home" drinking bar. Looks like that's the end of the wet T-shirt contests ...