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Sunday, May 16, 2004

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Friday, May 14, 2004

Breaking News

After two weeks of vehemently defending his actions in publishing questionable photos of abuses of Iraqi prisoners by British "squaddies," Daily Mirror editor, Piers Morgan, has stepped down.

"Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan has stepped down after admitting that the pictures of soldiers abusing Iraqis were a 'calculated and malicious hoax.'"

Mined Gossip

Paris Hilton told her stylist that Australian Idol contestant, Robert Mills, performed oral sex on her forty times in one night. No wonder why Australia is her favorite vacation spot (it really is). (Popbitch)

Train wreck, Courtney Love, gave an impromptu press conference in the ladies room of a Manhattan courthouse. She told reporters "If I'm addicted to anything, it's nicotine." During her hearing she rambled to the judge incoherently, "This is God saying you do not sleep with married men." What do you mean she's not ready to have custody of her daughter, you Fascist? (NYDN)

Alex Polier is set to cash in on her 7 1/2 minutes of fame by writing an essay for New York mag about "her experiences at the center of a political firestorm." Her fee? $10,000. (Lloyd Grove)

The East Hampton club Resort is selling time share to private cabanas for ten grand this summer. Perks include "a bodyguard, photographer and masseuse." All for ten G's. That's it? Count me in. (Page Six)

Dry-humping is the new black. First, Mischa Barton and bf got into it in front of throngs of music fans at Coachella, now, Britney and white trash fucktoy d'jour, Kevin Federline, were spotted getting into it in Sweden. (Rush & Molloy)

Thursday, May 13, 2004

A.O. Would Know

Ditzy starfucker Jerry Hall versus Yoko Ono cast as Lady Macbeth. Mark Jacobson spins an entertaining yarn, but we can’t decide if this is a total crackup or just totally pathetic. Also, how is it possible that Sean gets so many chicks? And what happened to Leelee, anyway?

C.C. Role Model

In high school, we thought Anita Pallenberg was the ultra cool one, but Marianne Faithfull is the real deal.

Missed Opportunity

Roberta Smith’s tract on the most recent spate of art vandalism falls a bit short of the mark. Props to the Times, though, for supporting this sort of think piece.
Technicolor Sprawl

“Mall of America, the biggest in the United States and the most potent tourist attraction in all of Minnesota, may have looked good on the drawing board. But it has aged badly since it opened in August 1992. You can see stains on the outside of the building, and grass has begun to poke through the asphalt of the parking lots. It is huge and unsightly. You can’t imagine Disney World or the Statue of Liberty being allowed to decay this way. Yet this mall has more visitors than Disney World, Graceland, and the Grand Canyon combined.

Sandra Tsing Loh reviews Call of the Mall by Paco Underhill (Simon & Schuster).

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

While Lecturing her Students on the Bullying Bush's Occupation of a Beautiful and Exotic -- but Neglected and Misunderstood -- Country for its Precious Fluid...

"I was teaching a class on imperialism," she continued, "and I was delivering all this material that was kind of new and upsetting, and everyone was getting all worked up and upset, and I was getting all worked up and upset, and all of a sudden, all I wanted to do was flash my underwear! It was crazy," (2nd item)

Mined Gossip (While We Guzzle Corona)

Don Johnson, Eighties icon extraordinaire, is reportedly so strapped for cash that he can't even afford groceries. The London Evening Standard is kind enough to detail some of the actor's outstanding debts, which include, around $1,000 to the Isberian Rug Co. Just substitute the phrase "Isberian Rug," with "Peruvian Flake" and you'll have a good idea of what's going on. (London Evening Standard)

"It" kid Fabian Basabe can't seem to make much headway in the pan-European marathon, a 3,000 mile car race, because he can't resist "'stopping in every city along the way to shop.'" Does he drive with his foot on the brake as well? (Rush & Molloy--3rd item)

Lindsay Lohan's rep, responds to the rumors about her client receiving a boob job with utter disbelief and moral outrage, "I find this rumor perverse, and the fact that she's 17 is bordering on pedophilia." Heh, nice. (Rush & Molloy--2nd item)

Russell Simmons defends his wife, Kimora, from charges of diva-ish antics by calling her a "hard-working mother of two." Hey, c'mon, you think it's easy beating your servants with a leather strop all day long?

Page Six is set become a TV show called "Rock Squad," with the first episode focusing on a Paris Hilton type character being found, drug-addled, in a "compromising position," by Paula Froelich. Spill, Page Six, spill.

Ashley Olsen lost her virginity to ex-bf Matt Kaplan, but dumped him because he was "overbearing" and jealous. Also, David Katzenberg, is two-timing his girlfriend, the other, skinny sister. It's a quandary. Should he stay with Mary-Kate and cut himself on her pelvic bone every time they hit skins, or should he cut his losses? The poor little rich dears and their problems. (Page Six--items 5, 9, and 10, respectively)

Get On Board, Kids

"I may run for the office of the president. I'll have a slogan on billboards all over the country: 'Gimme a bottle and a glass and I'll get American off its ass.'"
—Frank Sinatra

While we’re looking for the appropriate candidate to execute the chairman of the board’s sentiments, the GOP spin machine is recruiting members from a very tender age.

Did You Ever Ask Yourself: What the Hell is Julianne Moore Doing on the Cover of VF Again?

The LA Times and the NY Times are both set to run stories that allege Graydon Carter is benefiting financially by his ties to Hollywood, LA Weekly is reporting. Michael Cieply, of the LAT, claims to have "'six cases already'" of Carter taking money from moguls. The payoffs seem especially to revolve around which Hollywood star gets placed on the cover of the once highly esteemed mag. But, really, if Carter uses celebrity "journalism" to offset the cost of running harder-hitting stuff does the magazine really suffer? Certainly, that precedent was set by Tina Brown, twenty years ago. Whether or not the practice hurts the movie biz, however, is another story.

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Runge's Secret-Police Background is No Biggy

Conde Naste has released a press release in which Chairman, Jonathan Newhouse, "expresses confidence" in his lieutenant, Bernd Runge. The statement is in response to the latter being accused of spying for the East-German secret police force, STASI. Newhouse, who is his father's heir-apparent, dismisses the claims (without denying them) as having no "relevance to (Runge's) career at Condé Nast." Perhaps, his stint in the East-German equivalent to the KGB helped Runge get the job.
Pulling out all the stops, Conde Naste also touts out Runge's sister, who is believed to have been turned in by Runge. Here she is responds to the Der Spiegal article, "Herewith the impression is given that my brother betrayed me. This is absolutely incorrect." Runge's STASI handle was "schnuffler" or "nosy-parker." So, when is Hitchens KGB file going to be released? No, just kidding, Hitchens was a Trotskyite. (Press Release) (FWD)


The Sun Must be Getting to Me

When I first started this blog, my main focus was taking the Republican spin machine and especially their foot soldiers in the media to task for spreading misinformation and baseless propaganda. However, since almost everything these phony journalists say and write are distortions, outright lies and Rove’s talking points, it quickly became redundant.

I am constantly amazed that Conservative columnists, pundits and talk-show hosts, who compare Liberals to Communists at every turn, act so much like Bolsheviks. Like Bolsheviks, the GOP has party discipline; they have an intellectual wing and a rabble-rousing wing – think Jonah Goldberg and Sean Hannitty, respectively -- that skew the party’s message to fit their respective audiences. Now, David Broder, a self-proclaimed former Conservative “hit-man,” who, like Whittaker Chambers (a communist who became a cold warrior) before him, has become an effective tool for his former adversaries, has introduced another way the GOP propagandists are like Commies: cradle-to-grave job security. In Broder’s words, Conservatives have, “every financial incentive in the world to stay in the conservative movement forever.” Serving big business, that’s where the money is. Next time you see Bill Safire on the street, decked out in his rumpled cords, call out loudly, “I thought Joseph Brodsky was dead!”

Now, in a new book, “The Mighty Windbags,” Broder explains how the Conservative “Noise Machine” came to run the media with the help of a passive, overly self-conscious Liberal “media elite.” So, what can be done? I have thought for a long time that Liberal journos have to get over themselves. They have to put aside their childish notions of objectivity and be willing to tell people what to think. That’s what people want – answers, not nuance. This whole idea of journalistic objectivity only goes back thirty or forty years and is based on myth. The myth is expressed by the hagiography of Ben Bradlee, Woodward and Bernstein; I mean, you don’t think said triumvirate wanted to take down Nixon? Of course, they did.

Now the Left has a similarly explosive scandal to go after another super-secretive, dangerous administration. They have to be willing to use it. Attack Bush on Iraq, attack Bush on his Vietnam service, attack Bush on prisoner abuses, ties to Halliburton. Otherwise, Kerry could lose the election on the controversy surrounding his Vietnam medals (because the GOP assassins have no such ethical compunction), and wouldn’t that suck? Victory is too important to let the sanctity of a phony ideal get in its way. (Salon) (Daily Emerald)

Easy Target

“Worst of all, state officials say, many shooters do not retrieve all the fish they kill. They leave behind fish they cannot find or do not want to wade after and fish that exceed the state's five-pike-a-day limit or fall under the 20-inch minimum length for northern pike. Mr. Marcelle recently found 18 dead fish left to rot.”

This must have something to do with inbreeding, right?

A Chance to Meet One of Those Heinz Hotties

Okay, who’s going to Boston?

Ask and Ye Shall Receive

Charlie Finch slams Mary Boone’s respective uptown and downtown shows of Peter Halley and Hilary Harkness. Although we’re inclined to agree with his assessment that Halley’s new prison pieces phone it in, we have to admit we like Harkness’s take on mean girls. But, Charlie knows better.
Hello, Iberia?

It appears Barcelona is the place to be. In addition to the opening of the 2004 Forum, a four-month global conference, a new Herzog and de Meuron building now enhances the city’s Gaudi fabulousness. We’ll hit town just before P.J. Harvey’s show on May 29. You’ll find us in a bare-bulb-and-floor-boards bar in the Barrio Chino, sitting at a table on the back wall with a bottle of Vittel, a sugar cube, a fork, and a glass of sweet, sweet green.

Mined Gosssip

Conrad Black and his wife, Aimee, billed Hollinger "$90,000 to refurbish a 1958 Silver Wraith Rolls-Royce." The duo also billed the corporation for their household staff including "chefs, senior butlers, butlers, under-butlers, chauffeurs and footmen." Under-butlers? Footmen? Well, you don't expect a "lord" to open and close his own door, do you? Do you? (London Times--Subscription)

Noel Gallagher and ex-Stone Roses singer, Ian Brown, have recorded a track together. Eighties and Nineties unite! You have nothing to lose, except being so fucking over. (Sun--2nd item)

Kick 'em when there down -- disgraced former CNN producer, Jim Miller, is now being charged with hitting his wife. Page Six also reported the first scandal to rock Miller, being forced to resign from CNN for making "inappropriate comments." (Page Six)

Packer Collegiate has banned its kids from mentioning their "country houses." The tony school insists that the kids, "instead of saying things like, 'What I did at my country house' - to ask, 'What did I learn last weekend?'" C'mon guys, at that rate, a pecking order might never be established. (Lloyd Grove--2nd item)

Prince Charles and Jay-Z are both into "hip-hop," and "opulent bling-bling." Yes, indeed, but are they both "From the dope spot, with the smoke Glock, fleein the murder scene?" We think not. (Rush & Molloy--5th item)

Monday, May 10, 2004

Mined Gossip

BFF's Paris Hilton and Nicole Ritchie aren't speaking or something. They like to give each other the silent treatment. Maybe, it's because they have nothing to say?

Ricky Martin is being sued by a former manager, Alfred Medina, because he failed to love er--live up to, rather, a contract. Sixty-three million buckaroos, pack that in your bong and smoke it, but seriously, that's a big fucking number.

Scarlett Johansen admits to "making out or having sex or something," with freebase loving actor, Benicio Del Toro (check our archives), in an elevator. Maybe SAG should make sure their young stars have a baseline proficiency in language, you know, like the NCAA -- they either learn to be vaguely coherent or they're not allowed to act. Actually, forget it; five million dollars in tutors and we'd never get to see Lindsay Lohan's rack. (Page Six--2nd, 10th, and 11th items, respectively)

Mariah Carey scared off a male suitor at the Marquee when she hiked up her skirt and flashed her fleshy thighs. Mariah Carey? It rings a bell, oh yeah, that crazy chick. So, are gossip writers just camping out under the tables over at the Marquee? There seems to be an awful lot of items that come out of that place, that's all we're saying. (Elisa Lipsky-Karasz {Sunday})

Keanu Reeves hooks back up with old flame Autumn Macintosh. Yeah, really? Oh, okay. (3AM)

Macaulay Culkin to write an Edmund Morris styled meditation on, well, himself. The book's treatment promises to deal with Culkin's "quest to come to terms with the awesome pressures of childhood megastardom and family dysfunction." Can we order twenty copies, like right now? We can't fucking wait! In other news, David Foster Wallace just jumped out of a window. (Lloyd Grove)

The Gin for Vodka Drinkers

In our dreams, the pool house is illuminated with these.

Exactly Why We Learned the Book Rules for Blackjack

On our first trip to Las Vegas, we were fairly naïve about gambling. After losing a hundred bucks in about 20 seconds at a roulette table, we settled in front of a slot machine and proceeded to turn into one of the drooling masses with silver-grey-ed fingers that are key to filling the casino coffers to the tune of some $30 billion a year. We were amazed at how difficult it was to stop feeding the slots and how easy it was to establish an affinity for one sort of machine, believing it was the only type that would yield a jackpot. This week’s New York Time Magazine cover story gave us a little relief regarding our weakness, as it exposes the fact that contemporary slot machines are intentionally designed to be the “crack cocaine of gambling.”

Epilogue
On our next trip west, we went to school for about an hour with a friendly dealer at a Blackjack table and learned the book rules. We’re pleased to say on our last outing to Sin City we walked away from the weekend $500 ahead of our outlay. We’d like to tell you about the fabulous piece of designer clothing that hangs in our closet as a reminder of our gambling prowess. But we’re pretty certain we spent the winnings on cabs.

You Can Make a Difference

The New York Times Style editors came in a bit late with yesterday’s piece on the live Pac-Man phenom. It’s our understanding this story hit the Web seven days ago, so what’s with the Page 1 treatment? If the nation’s paper of record is going to mine the blogsphere like this, Steve Outing and his Poynter pals are going to have to think twice about whether or not blogging is going to affect the face of journalism.

Attitude Adjustment

Speaking of the ephemeral, our regular pursuit of transitory visceral states seems to have been the deciding factor in which live shows we have attended in the last few months. At recent Belle and Sebastian and Air performances, the low-key, ambient nature of both bands were heightened by some of the most amazing light shows we have ever seen. These designers are producing some seriously trippy shit, and it’s an experience we sometimes wish we could reproduce at will.

Fortunately, the Aluminum Group has done just that in a cool little Flash movie. This is required viewing for anyone who has just emerged from one of those brain-draining bureaucratic meetings that causes us to think we’re members of the trench-coat mafia. Spur the action by clicking on the animated tablets, which are, of course, Valium. Enjoy.

Okay, now that we’ve lauded the AG’s artistic pretensions, we have to admit their show on Saturday fucking sucked. Listen boys, stop spending so much time getting fitted for your Prada suits for the stage and have a few rehearsals. We actually left the show early, which we have to say is a first for a band we actually sought to see. We’re sorry we didn’t drag ourselves away from our heated cocktail conversation on Friday to make the Peaches show. From what we hear, that’s an experience that can change your life.

That Dopetastic C. C.

While we realize regular readers of Anonymous Outsider have come to expect pithy recaps of the day’s gossip as well as breaking news, we must reluctantly admit we are not nearly as talented at reading between the celebrity headlines as your regular poster A.O., nor do we have his contacts.

(In truth, however, we’re only interested in one star story, and that would be exactly when our number one supine fantasy, Mr. Brad Pitt, is back on the market. Our degree of separation from said Adonis currently stands at three—a situation we are looking to improve with ongoing tenacity.)

Hence, we bring you the most entertaining bit of Internet ephemera we recently received from our own deadly viper squad. This came across our desktop last week, and we apologize if it’s made the rounds, but it’s a goodie and always worth another look.

Check it.

Friday, May 07, 2004

More Boring Crap from That Cultured Chick

Bowing to Choire’s discerning insider art sensibilities, we checked out Stewart Waltzer’s auction reports on ArtNet. While we are fans of the snarky irreverence Waltzer’s prose manifests, we are still inclined toward Carol Vogel’s straightforward daily news reportage—at least when it comes to auctions. (We’d love it, though, if someone would disclose why Sotheby’s gets such favored-child treatment by Vogel over the oft-neglected Christie’s.) Still, we laud ArtNet publisher Walter Robinson’s patronage of stylistically impudent voices who tell it like it played. That said, we wish there were a whole hell of a lot more of art-world persona non grata Charlie Finch’s perspective either on Robinson’s virtual pages or in real-world black and white.

After Anna and Plum had Proclaimed the Good News to This City...*

"So what are the essentials of looking good New York-style? Mostly, it seems to be down to what you do with your hair, wherever it grows. And, leaving aside the waterfall that should flow between your shoulder blades, less is definitely more."

Also, see London "It" girls stack up against New York "It" girls. (But, Serafina--new and hip?)

Mined Gossip (and a Quick Word)

Okay, sports fans, this is probably it for us until next Wednesday. We will probably, however, check in with this feature. Because, you know, what the hell would you all do without it -- read these shitty ass gossip columns that we recap? In the meantime, it's going to get awfully intelligent around here, with our guest nigga being into very high-brow subject matter and shit. It might get so bad that you will be crying out for the downmarket drivel that we dish out on a regular basis. Also, this (Nice, huh?) has been in the cue for quite a while now, and will finally be launched sometime next week.

Vanity Fair employees kicked out a scribe for the NY Times from one of its super-secret glitterati parties. Evidently, the incident was noted in yesterday's "Boldface Names" column, but we missed it because, well, we just don't read the column, it's kinda lame. (Roger Friedman)

Heidi Klum left a bizarre message on her homepage "from" her newborn baby girl. It reportedly reads, "hey, could this ugly motherfucker really be my Daddy?" No, just kidding, it says: "They tell me I'm a very pretty child and having tasted the best nourishment in the world I am very tired and just want to sleep." Awww, actually, we can't get all snarky with that, it's sweet as sugar. (3AM)

Harper's Bazaar editor, Glenda Bailey, finally throws a bash and it turns out to be a "shill for her boyfriend," fashionistas are grousing. Kind of makes sense, doesn't it? Anyway, Harper's is experiencing a brain-drain lately, losing talent to other mags. Wait, Harper's Bazaar, what's that? Some kind of literary thingy, isn't it? (Page Six)

Jay-Z and Beyonce were married secretly in the islands, Page Six reports. We reported it months ago. It's so far back in our archives that were not even going to look for it. Also, Trump's wedding might be a year away. Is Melanoma Knauss being tested, or something? (7th, 8th items respectively)

Donald Trump cops to thinking Rob Lowe is "the most beautiful guy I've ever seen." God, Trump is even all late-eighties when he's being gay! (Lloyd Grove--last item)

Piers Morgan -- a Gentleman by any Estimation

Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan's take on what Naomi Campbell's libel victory against his paper, the Daily Mirror, means for society:
"This is a very good day for lying, drug-abusing prima donnas who want to have their cake with the media, and the right to then shamelessly guzzle it with their Cristal champagne."

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