Friday, February 27, 2004

Either Way, He'd Still Be Dead
I have read a dizzying number of reviews for (and editorials about) Mel Gibson's "Passion." The NY Times, Daily News, Chicago Tribune, Variety, The New Yorker, New York Magazine, three in the Observer and two in the Forward etc., etc. Many of them discuss who killed Jesus Christ and why; it was the Romans not the Jews who killed Christ. Pilate was not as Gibson depicts him. He was a brutal military governor. Of this, I have no doubt.

But, there is something else. What difference does it make who killed Jesus? It was two millennia ago, he'd be dead anyway. Even if "the Jews" did kill Christ, they did him a favor. He's a fucking God. Didn't he have to die to fulfill prophesy?

If Christ died in an old age home in Bethlehem what would churches put on their roofs? Maybe Mel Gibson thinks that Jesus would still be alive now if he wasn't crucified, raising the dead and turning water into wine.

Bart's Column Can't Be Trusted
The recently published letter from Eisner to Ovitz opens up new questions about Peter Bart's relationship with Hollywood. Can anyone that reads his column really be surprised that the Variety editor is an overpaid flack?
"We do not agree on the way to handle the media. I feel distance and honestly and non manipulation is the way to go. You (Eisner) want to control or handle or humor the press. In your letter you told me to read 'Peter Bart (of Variety) and I will better understand relationships.' That's all you said. When the article came out you told me, he had sent it on to you beforehand for 'corrections and tone and editing.' (Variety)

"But the one I like, the really cute one, is the quick, dependable chap. Nothing he won't do for you in a pinch--*"
From Talking Points Q&A:
"Drudge does have good sources in the White House and some political circles. People know they can feed him information and that he'll run it without asking a lot of questions. Now that's one of the best ways known to mankind to cultivate sources."

The Comedians*
"'I'm not interested in politics,' said Mr Philippe, adding that if a new government asked him to help with security he would, but otherwise he would go home to his father's farm in southern Haiti." (Guardian)

"'My name is Captain Concasseur. You have a sense of humor. I appreciate humor. I am in favor of jokes. They have political value. Jokes are a release for the cowardly and the impotant"
--"The Comedians," Graham Greene

Thursday, February 26, 2004

Hott Dish
Noelle Hancock isn't too happy about some pictures I posted of her (2/19). An anonymous tipster received an email from the hott new dishmeister complaining she "wishes those photos would die". As my source says, "not as long as there is Google, my dear!"

Culture Wars I: Howard's End*?
Could Howard Stern wind up getting fired by Viacom, or will he try to slog through the new broadcasting restrictions? If he does wind up going off the air I think the hiatus will be short-lived. Political spin-doctors have whipped the government into a state of hysteria about indecency but there is bound to be a backlash.

Maybe the “Howard Stern Show” is a natural target in this climate but it is convenient for the Republicans if Stern was to go off the air now. One of the reasons why I never used to listen to his show was that despite his psudo-libertinism his politics were essentially conservative: xenophobic, anti-gay and pro law and order. Oh yeah, and he's a bully.

That’s what his listeners responded to and he played it up. In the past few years however, his politics have shifted gradually to the left. A former supporter of Bush, he now criticizes the President's policies and is supporting Kerry. The Republicans' reaction to the Janet Jackson “scandal” made him even more vocal.

Stern has a huge sway over his loyal listeners. Getting a product plugged on his show is worth tens of thousands of dollars. So, when he urges his millions of fans to vote for a candidate, it translates at the polls. Stern claims that Clear Channel, who has dropped him from syndication, is admitting that that the reason for pulling his show has nothing to do with content and everything with pleasing Congress.

If the GOP can't have Stern on their team when the culture wars (especially over gay marriage) start to heat up, they'll settle to have him sidelined.
(Link via Jeff Jarvis)

Smoking Pole Not a Safe Alternative to Cigarettes
"Some cases of mouth cancer could be caused by a virus contracted during oral sex, scientists have warned.
Experts say heavy smoking or drinking causes most mouth cancers, but the (virus) link could help explain why some young adults develop the rare disease."

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Jesus Christ Superstar
Perhaps like In the New Testament, where Christ’s forty days in the desert is a metaphor for the forty years the Jews spent wandering the desert before they reach Israel, the suffering audiences everywhere will endure today is analogous to the suffering Christ bore on the cross. Except the relationship is inverted: whereas in the Bible one man suffered for the multitudes, in the weeks to come millions of moviegoers will be suffering
for the edification of one man, Mel Gibson. Yet “Passion” will be plenty of people’s cup of tea—vulnerable people especially. Young people. Asian Buddhists will wear t-shirts festooned with the Christian God’s image. Old JC will adorn everything from blotter acid to coffee mugs from Baton Rouge to Bombay. Jesus will be more popular than Beatles again.* God will finally know what it’s like to be a pop star.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

A.O. Ed. II, Tongue Implanted (Halfway) in Cheek
This morning Rick Saloman, of Paris Hilton tape fame, was on the "Howard Stern Show." The guy is barely coherent. At one point when he was being called a scumbag by a caller he said "Dude, your argument is on stupid (sic), I'm saying I am a scumbag." But, women don't seem to mind. His scorecard includes Paris Hilton, Playboy Playmate Nicole Lenz, Shannon Doherety and Drew Barrymore. Later, one of Stern's sidekicks asked Rick about a Neve Campbell sex tape. Has word of the tape leaked out from this humble blog (1/12)? Or is there another Neve tape besides the one that I'm aware of? But, I digress. My point is, why the fuck did I ever bother to read books--or, care about anything serious. Doing the NY Times crossword puzzle is enjoyable but, compared to soaking in a hot tub in Malibu with Pam Anderson, it kind of pales. I feel that although as a young kid, I was somewhat artsy, by the time I graduated High School and went on to College I was on the right track. Meaning, I really didn't care about anything except for being popular and getting wasted. And of course, pussy. So what happened? Well, I guess I wasn't ignorant enough and I became self-conscious. Knowledge for its own sake became important again. Kids, let me tell you; life ain't nothing but bitches and money.*

Anonymous Editorial
Judging from what I've been reading on the web in the last few days, there are actually some that are considering voting for Nader in `04. They don't seem to realize that the relatively large turnout for Nader in the `00 election was the single worst mistake made by the left in this country in at least the last thirty years. Those who pretend not to see a difference between the two major parties, voting out of some emotionally retarded sense of "fierce" idealism even when the shit is really on the line, leave me completely cold. In the next presidential election Kerry is going to need every manjack's vote he can get. This is not the time to be apathetic or altruistic--it is the time to send this cronyist, deceitful administration back to the corporate boardrooms and stadium churches of the South where they'll do less damage.

The Fine Line Between Passion and Insanity
Passion is being released tomorrow, Ash Wednesday. Lou Carlozo, at the Chicago tribune calls it "easily the most violent, blood-drenched film I have seen in years--perhaps ever..." In any case, there is a school of thought that holds that some of the things that Mel Gibson says and does might be well, a little strange. Is Mel Gibson Crazy? You be the judge.
1. He claims to be on a mission from God.
2. He has moments of great clarity.
3. He accepted a part in "Air America."
4. He would like to see Frank Rich's "intestines on a stick."
5. His eyes dart nervously and he laughs maniacally during interviews and
press conferences.

On the other hand, Gibson is very, very rich and will have even more money when the box office to his overblown religious saga and his cut of souvenir ceramic crucifix spikes start to pour in.

Apropos of Nothing, Carmen Jones
This morning, Otto Preminger's "Carmen Jones" was on television. It's such a great film--one can't help but wonder what attracted an immigrant German Jew to setting Bizet's "Carmen" in the segregated Deep South. The idea of making the antagonist a boxer instead of a matador, the translation of the lyrics into English seem like simple choices but are really breathtakingly clever. Like Edgar Elgar's transcriptions of Bach, Robert Fitzgerald's prose translation of the Illiad and Oscar Levant's renditions of Gershwin there is genius in the interpretation.
Of course, the big payoff of "Carmen Jones" is Dorothy Dandridge. Beautiful, talented and doomed, her sex appeal is incredible. There is a scene where Belafonte blows her toes dry, after she has painted them, that is sensual even steamy, fifty years after the film was made. Unlike other nineteen-fifties beauties Dandridge's body would be admired today. Of course, Dandridge's life was cut tragically short by suicide at forty-two.

I, Claudius
Claudius Nero Germanicus, made well-known to modern readers by two Robert Graves novels (and later a play by Derek Jacobi), was the "idiot" nephew of the syphillitic Emperor Tiberius. An amateur and clever historian, he succeded the reins of empire from the dissolute, murderous (and also probably syphillitic) Caligula after the latter was executed in a palace coup d' etat. He survived through Caligula's reign by posturing as a buffoon and a clown. As Emperor, before Claudius was murdered by his scheming wife Agrippina, he was able to restore confidence and peace to the troubled empire.
Roy E. Disney, who has long been derided as ''Walt's idiot nephew,'' as he puts it, is actually an eloquent, thoughtful man who completes the daily crossword in ink. Yet he does have a quirky sense of humor that he tends to unleash at his own expense. ...I looked up from my notepad and was astonished to see him tugging on both ears, dangling his tongue from his mouth and panting like an exhausted dog. ''Did you know,'' he asked me, ''that I was the model for Goofy?'' (NYT Magazine)

Nothing Like a Good Chicken Rape Story to Keep the Guardian On its Toes
"Did you really rape that chicken?"
"Ah..." he says, pausing. "You shouldn't make a big deal out of that."
"So you did?"
"Yes. But boys that grow up on farms in this country, they are always, you know, screwing around with animals."
"Animals? Plural?"
"Well, there are kids that get involved with other sorts of animals."
"But for you, it was just the chicken."


Monday, February 23, 2004


Drudge admitting to the "charge" that he brought a can of whip ass down on his lover, as brought here? Sadly, no. It is (another) tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. George W. Bush has fired his first salvo at John Kerry.
(Ed. note--As of this morning, Drudge has already made the banner headline smaller.)

A Mind Boggling Work of Staggering Genius (for Self-Promotion)
"It is not the first time (Eggers) has used the Amazon site for a career boost. Several years ago his website, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, told readers to write fake, comic reviews of his debut novel. Anyone could give it a go, went the blurb - but the number one rule was that "the review rates the book with five stars". A funny experiment with a useful side effect, it seems." (Guardian)
Like Outward Bound, Except With Council Flats Instead of Mountains
Amanda has news for her mother. Upon graduating, she plans to defer college for a year and go abroad, not to study or even bum around Europe but to squat in an abandoned building in London, like a true punk. "I hear," she said, with all the verve of an excitable teenage girl, "that squatting in London is, like, the best." (NYT)

A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing
Naomi Wolf, who famously urged Al Gore to wear earth tones and be more of an alpa-male is accusing her former mentor Harold Bloom, power house of American literary criticism, of "sexual encroachment" twenty years after the alleged incident. She writes, in New York magazine, that at a private dinner meeting at her apartment he put his hand on her thigh, she rebuffed him and he went away. That is the crime that merits what amounts to a treatise on sexual harassment policy at Yale. Even though she never brought a formal complaint against Bloom. Why did she wait so long to air her terrible secret?
"Every year, I wonder about the young women who might have suffered because I was too scared to tell the truth to the people whose job it is to make sure the institution is clean. I am not at peace when the sun sets and the Book of Life is sealed: I always see that soft spot of complicity." (NYM)

Friday, February 20, 2004

Darth Nader--The Umpire Strikes Back
Not content with helping to hand the Republicans the Presidency in 2000, Ralph Nader is going to declare his presidential candidacy. Is he a patsy for the Right-Wing or an imbecile and an arrogant jack-ass? Maybe, he is both. In the next election however, anyone that votes for Nader will know exactly what they're doing--voting, in effect, for Bush.
"Ralph Nader, the consumer advocate who ran for president in 2000 as a Green Party candidate, will enter the 2004 race for the White House as an independent candidate, advisers told Fox News on Friday." (FNC)

Peter Bart: Mad Mel is Made Man in Tinseltown
Peter Bart is doing what he does best--shilling for Hollywood bigs, this time, Mel Gibson. Or is he really shilling for the studios that are going to forgive Gibson for his sins? Will Mel be given a pass even if he doesn't distance himself from his father's anti-Semitic vitriol? Judging from Bart's words, don't expect there to be any negative recompense for Gibson from Hollywood.
"Are you suggesting he's neurotic?" Variety's Bart says with a laugh. "No, Mel Gibson is a person who's respected, who's thought of very fondly by the people who've worked with him. Will he be ostracized if the picture is perceived as being anti-Semitic? I don't think that will happen. He'll still get roles. But it's not clear to me that he wants to return to action pictures. He's seemed to be tired of playing that same kind of thing. But he could, because he's good at it. Let's face it, beyond everything else, he's a terrific actor. A natural. He could play the same roles. Does he want to do 'Lethal Weapon 6'? I don't think so." (Newsday)

It's Good to Be Prince
Carol Sarler, in the Express, has written a piece attacking Prince Harry:
"His exploits have been making headlines for years: the drinking, the drugging, the yobbing, the waste of the costliest education in the land, the explicit disdain for the lower orders, the increasingly sexual public romps -- we've seen it all, we've heard it all."
Calling him a "thoroughly horrible young man," Sarler said Harry "has rarely lifted a finger unless it's to feel up a cheap tart in a nightclub or shoot some harmless critter."

Fleet Street to Add New Tabloid?
Independent on Sunday editor Stephen Murdoch is trying to raise (UK)$15m for the launching of a new upmarket tabloid title. Glover hopes to target readers disaffected by the "dumbing-down" of broadsheet titles since Rupert Murdoch "launched a price war between the Times and Telegraph in the early 90s."
Readers with especially posh tastes have been even more disenfranchised by the recent launchings of tabloid versions of The Times and the Independent. Glover is also a columnist at the Daily Mail. The Daily Mail and Express have traditionally occupied a middle-ground between the red-top tabloids and the broadsheets. Murdoch has hoped to take readers away from these titles with his flashier tabloid version of the Times. Because of these demographics, skeptics wonder if any new newspaper title can crack even the modest goal of 100,000 readers. London also has a late paper, the Evening Standard. (Link via Gawker)

Thursday, February 19, 2004

I Guess She Wasn't Getting Oral
"Last month Song-Ya, a 23-year-old woman from Zizhong County China, discovered she had no anus. Song Ya's parents had never told her that she was different from other girls so all her life she had happily defecated through her vagina... somehow. She discovered the bum rap when she got her first boyfriend. Thankfully surgeons have now rectified the rectum and Song-Ya is a happy girl." (Popbitch)
(Ed. note--Yeah, I hate myself for posting this too)

All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go
In the next few days you will be seeing lost and dejected young people. Howard Dean supporters: of which the New York contingent may be the saddest. They have been cheated out of their primary. Last weekend, on Astor Place, I saw an earnest young hipster holding up a sign reading “Howard Dean’s Special Interest.” My friend asked her, “is that a photo-op?” The girl looked perplexed and said “no, but, thank you.” Then smiled widely. And then my friend looked kind of perplexed and for a moment the two girls looked at each other, both perplexed. “I didn’t mean it as a compliment,” my friend said softly as we walked away.
By then, Dean was already a lost cause and the campaign worker had the look of someone who had found fervor—a crusader. So now that there are no more "meet-ups" and campaign H.Q. is closing down what will she do? Work for the trust-fund kids at the Kerry campaign, work with the Kucinich loons? Regardless, the Deaniacs will look back to the last few months with fondness—they had something, fleeting as it was.

You Mean No More Spanking Strippers With Rotten Mackerels?
"Besieged Viacom president Mel Karmazin read the riot act to execs of all 180 Infinity radio stations yesterday - including Howard Stern's in New York - telling them they'll be fired if they violate the company's new `zero tolerance' policy on obscenity." (NYP)
How will Stern, who is on vacation this week, react to the new edict? Stern has in the past claimed he would rather be fired than tone down his act. The Shock jock frequently rails against the F.C.C. for what he deems to be their obsolete broadcast guidelines. But, him and Karmazin go way back--the Viacom prez was Howard Stern's boss at K-Rock during the glory days of the show. Even more importantly, Karmazin has the juice to put the kabosh on future television deals that Stern has planned with the broadcasting giant for after he retires in 2006. Stern will probably toe the line until the uproar from boobgate subsides.

Master and Commanded
"`Screw journalism! The whole thing's a fraud anyway,' Drudge once proclaimed. Though he calls himself an `information anarchist', he is anything but independent. He is a reliable submissive to his partisan `sources'. One independent study of his 'exclusive' stories determined that only one-third were true. His latest `intern' revelation is the sound of his master's voice at the beginning of a campaign Republicans fear losing." (Guardian)
Comeuppence: Conason Catches Coulter
Last Friday, I laid into Ann Coulter for attacking Max Cleland's war record; the pundit said that the former senator was lucky to have fallen on a grenade in Vietnam, losing three limbs in the process. Joe Conason, writing in the Peach Sheets, sets Cleland's war record straight here. Ann Coulter is a GOP strumpet so devoid of moral fiber, so hideous and vile that she would attack a silver star recipient's patriotism merely because he criticized the president.

I Guess "The Transom" is the New Term for Totally Hot Piece of Ass
"And when a member of (N.E. Pats QB Tom Brady's) posse informed him of our request for an interview, Mr. Brady leaned over, looked The Transom up and down, and shook his head. Let the self-loathing begin." (Noelle Hancock--3rd item)

Next, Maybe God Can Help You With the Homicidal Maniac Thing
Of New York Times writer Frank Rich, Gibson admits to having said, "I wanted to kill him. I want his intestines on a stick. I want to kill his dog.
Sawyer: You said, "The Holy Ghost was working through me."
Gibson: I've received a lot of ridicule for that statement. I think that the Holy Ghost is real. I believe that he's looking favorably on this film and he wanted to help.

Another Way For Your Prayers to Go Unanswered
"Supplicants to God now have a new method of reaching the Almighty - via email.
Israel's Bezeq telecommunications company announced today that it is opening an email service for those who have a special request from God, and is thus expanding its existing service of faxing notes to the Western Wall in Jerusalem."

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

Hey Britters, That's What the Butt-Pirate With the Filofax is For
Today, Jeanette Wells teaches Britters to send her fucking assistant to Borders when she wants to buy a book about psychiatric medication:
"Britney Spears was spotted reading “Listening to Prozac.” The singer’s spokeswoman didn’t return The Scoop’s call to ask about the singer’s interest in the book about the popular anti-depressant." (MSNBC-Last Item)

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

The Incredible Whiteness of Blogging
John Lee at Africana.com is claiming that Choire and Anna Marie are mortgaging racial sensitivity for snark. Well no, actually, he claims their blogs are racist. The former is my idea. Remember, Choire was accused of spreading homophobia, too; and one assumes his blog isn't homophobic. Anyway, although the entire essay is worth reading, the most interesting (if not wild) accusation, about Wonkette, has nothing to do with race:
She also has a penchant for reminding everyone on the Internet that Wes Clark, Jr. seems to be six degrees of her via his past conquests, while boosting his Google entries high enough so that he can sell his scripts. In exchange for that, she is hoping to prime his pump as a gossip leak, as she missed a golden opportunity to slam his father, former Democratic Candidate Clark, for admitting that he knows what a metrosexual is. Who said a bug doesn't know it's a bug? Unfortunately, she missed the scoop of Clark retiring from the race, Clark's endorsement of Kerry, Clark's knowledge of Kerry's alleged affair. (Link via Corsair)

Gray Lady T&A: They're Hangin' Out in the Tent
Joyce Wadler dishing on the Jennifer Nicholson show that was last Wednsday:
Sena, a lanky blond model, tore down the runway with the bodice of her floral dress so agape that her breasts were entirely exposed...Sena told us that she had rushed to cede the runway to the star model, Carmen Kass. "It was an issue of self-sacrifice for a supermodel I really admire,'' she said.
Wadler also gives her opinion on Kim Stewart's ass. In the gossip stakes, sometimes, slow and steady wins the race.

Secretly Servicing, Without Protection
"WHICH sexy young socialite might want to be extra careful when she delivers some charity benefits between the sheets to her new boyfriend? We're told that the handsome young hunk has dallied with plenty of dudes in the past." I'm not saying this blind item refers to Fabian Basabe and Barbara Bush--but, one could sure be mistaken in thinking so. (NYP)

Scotsmen: Alchohol Inhaler is "Diabolical" Device
An Englishman, tired of having to keep a bottle of Jameson in his top desk drawer, has invented AWOL "a gadget that enables people to inhale alcohol through their nose or mouth." The inventor, Dominic Simler, claims that the gadget has the added benefit of making hangovers obsolete. I'm sure there are thousands of more advantages to consuming alcohol by this method--New Yorkish notes the biggest in that it doesn't make you fat. Here are four more:
1. Kids can start getting drunk at a much earlier age.
2. No more ugly puking up bile.
3. You can wash your vicodin down with coca-cola, and still experience the synergistic effects of alcohol and painkillers.
4. You can consume alcohol while driving without cops bothering you.
(Links via New Yorkish)

My Money is on Charlotte Church
The London Daily Mirror's 3AM Girls, that paper's gossip column, features a blind item every day. They call it "Wicked Whispers;" today's is:
What showbiz mum caught her daughter in the act and, rather than hurriedly leave the room, said to the boyfriend: "You can shag under my roof, but only missionary. I can't bear the thought of my daughter doing doggy-style at her age."

Newsday: Journalism, A Tale of Two Cities
Last night, on "Paula Zahn Now", the Ragin' Cajun James Carville called Matt Drudge the "sleaziest human being alive." More diplomatic, James Pinkerton calls Drudge the mayor of mucky city; daily population-15,000,000. Pinkerton then proceeds to name the woman at the heart of the Kerry "scandal;" the first mainstream reporter in America I am aware of to do so. As the Newsday columnist himself acknowledges: "Occasionally, Tidy City reporters go slumming..."
But, as for Drudge, it always amazes me that nobody goes after him like he goes after Republican opponents. There must be plenty of people around with knowledge of Drudge's "reporting" methods. He doesn't even pretend to use traditional journalistic methods. So where do his "scoops" come from? Obviously, they come from the GOP hacks. Can someone with such massive readership continue to escape major criticism?
(Ed. note--It turns out all the NY tabloids have named Polier as the woman in the Kerry fracas today.)
(Link via Romenesko)

Monday, February 16, 2004

Amy Sohn Doesn't Like Getting on Top
Writing about sex is a little like writing about gardening--no matter what new trend you unearth, chances are, it's been talked about before. Indeed, in sex as in gardening, there's nothing much new under the sun. Of course, Amy Sohn must know this, which makes it all the more interesting to watch her struggle gamely to churn out a column every week. In her latest piece she has trained her unforgiving eye on a new practice sweeping the city; men, chock-full of angst, anti-depressants and Viagra, are faking orgasms (gasp!). In fact, this practice is abetted by that new sensation, the condom (double gasp!). So, note to self: no more of this unseemly pumping away into daybreak--wince, roll your eyes, groan, jump up and pretend to towel off. And girls--quickie or all night? Make up your fucking mind. (NYM)

You Mean Jews Won't Pay to be Pilloried?
This still means, especially in Manhattan, that (Passion) is pitched away from an upscale demographic, and instead toward one that is less well off economically. For a major release not to be in the Ziegfeld or in the Sony Lincoln Plaza on the West Side means that Newmarket and Gibson are making quite a statement about how they think this film will be received. The theaters they have chosen in Jewish areas are minimal-- (Roger Friedman, FNC)

Putting the Blow in Blow-Job
NY Times Magazine has a feature it calls "Domains," like MTV's "Cribs" for the literate (okay, for the vaguely literate). This Sunday's subject was professional kiss-ass James Lipton. Who knew that Lipton could read at one years old and at three was "writing epic poetry, horrible, terrible stuff?" Yes, I expect it was. It also may come as a surprise to some that publicly blowing the entire cast of "The Simpsons" or "Will and Grace" takes so much preparation: "We shoot on Monday nights. I will already have done two weeks' research. Then Friday morning through Monday afternoon I am incommunicado." (NYT Magazine)

Friday, February 13, 2004

Starfucker Clarification
Yesterday's post about Neve Campbell was a reference to the existence of an amateur porn video featuring the starlet. It was filmed in the late nineties.

Ann Coulter: Sen. Cleland Lucky to Have Lost Three Limbs in Vietnam
The Daily News is reporting that young Barbara Bush was getting it on with South American Social Climber Fabian Basabe on the dance floor at Sette and Viscaya, a club in Chelsea. "...Bush straddled Basabe's leg, gazed into his eyes and let him dip her to the floor." Basabe who is rumored to be gay, was once quoted in the NY Observer as saying: "In my South American background, it’s so impolite to say ‘What do you do? It’s basically ‘How much money do you have?" According to the News' story a picture of the two was snapped. How would that play in the "red states?" What would Papa Bush's moonshine guzzling, tobacco chewing redneck comrade in arms Senator Zell Millier who had this to say yesterday about the Super Bowl half-time show: "The Culture of Far Left America was displayed in a startling way during the Super Bowl’s now infamous half-time show. A show brought to us courtesy of Value-Les Moonves and the pagan temple of Viacom-Babylon," say about Bush and Basabe pairing up?
Rupert Murdoch's London Sun is naming the young woman at the center of the allegations around Kerry. Alex Polier, 24, is a journalist from Pennsylvania currently living in Kenya. Interestingly, the woman's father maintains she resisted Kerry's advances, described in the paper as, an invitation to "down to Washington two or three years ago." So was there an affair or not?
Meanwhile, conservative columnist and pseudo-babe Anne Coulter is hinting that former Sen. Max Cleland lost three limbs in Vietnam due to incompetence and that he is the luckier for it: "Cleland lost three limbs in an accident during a routine noncombat mission where he was about to drink beer with friends. Luckily for Cleland's political career he happened to do it while in Vietnam." Classy bunch, huh? (Zell Miller link via Wonkette.)

Thursday, February 12, 2004

Kraut Pout--Nazi Novel Nixed
A German publisher, Alexander Fest, has axed a must anticipated novel revolving around porn trade during the Third Reich. According to the author of the eighty-sixed tome, Thor Kunkle, Nazi officials took part in a threesome with a teenage girl and her sister on film. Kunkle has taken some flack for downplaying the horrors of the Nazi regime. Reponding to these charges in The Guardian, Kunkle said: "It's not that I'm trying to ignore the Holocaust, it's merely that it's totally passé as a theme. Who does Fest think he is?"

Starfucker, Part I
Page Six has an item about Neve Campbell today. It's no big deal; she talks about kissing chicks in her movies. Well, A.O. can report that Neve likes to do sex scenes with dudes easily as much. In fact, she's been filming sex scenes for longer than most of us realized. I can say with some certainty that she's a dirty, dirty girl. Developing...

Here We Go Again
Drudge has, as I've written he would (2/9, 2/10), lobbed a bomb at the Kerry Campaign. Not a drug bomb, though. The devious disseminator claims to have inside dope on an affair Kerry had with an intern at least four years ago. Indeed, Matt-o cites the relationship with the intern as the reason Kerry wasn't picked to run with Gore in 2000.
Drudge claims that rumors of this issue have spurred Dean on to continue fighting for the Dem. nomination. Perhaps most damaging of all for the Kerry campaign, if true, is the allegation that the former intern has fled the country. Matt Drudge was a major force in breaking open the Monica Lewinsky scandal during the Clinton White House. Um--Developing... (E&P and Drudge)

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

But Will It Feature Beaver Shots?
Two Harvard female undergrads are starting a student-run skin mag called H-Bomb, The Harvard Crimson reports. Only Harvard students will pose for H-bomb. "It’s a sex magazine that will hopefully be run by students of all sexual orientations and backgrounds," Baldegg said. Baldegg said she expected the magazine, which will also include art and fiction articles, to garner a lot of attention. (Link via Romenesko)

Miller Out at NY Magazine...
Godfather Pastiche Urgently Awaited From TMFTML

Adam Moss will be taking the reins from Caroline Miller at New York Magazine, the NY Times and Buisness Wire is reporting. The Pulitzer winning Moss has worked at Esquire, Rolling Stone and most notably the NY Times, where he was assistant managing editor for features, a post created especially for him.
Perhaps expressing the attributes Bruce Wasserstien wishes to reflect in his recently acquired weekly, Bill Keller (executive editor of Times) said in a statement: "Adam is one of a handful of editors I know who is equally (and remarkably) adept at high-end journalism and popular culture."
Things are moving quickly over at the mag. The shake-up happens only a week after New York Magazine's celebrated media columnist Michael Wolff announced he will be moving to The Observer. (Links via Romenesko)
VF: David Peckar Cares About Journalism, Fuller Adds Class
It may seem quaint that tabloid owner David Peckar cares about journalistic integrity, but he does. Fuller's job is to give A.M.I. legitimacy, if not class. (March Issue, Vanity Fair)

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

In the Red Corner, Wearing Black Trunks, Poorer Than Jerry Cooney
Mike Tyson, who earned more than $US200 million during his professional career, had $US5553 left in cash on December 31, according to papers filed with the US Bankruptcy Court. (SMH)
Where did the money go? Here's the AO estimate of expenses that led him to bankruptcy:
$10 Million--Robyn Givens Divorce Settlement
$10 Million--Monica Turner Tyson Divorce Settlement
$18 Milliion--Legal Fees
$40 Million--Cars, Houses and Sundry
$ 3 Million--Fine for Biting Evander "Real Deal" Holyfield
70 Million--Stolen by Don King
$195,000--Lap Dances
$100,000--Facial Tatoos
$ 8 Million--Fruit of Islam Bodyguards
$12 Million--His Posse
$500,000--Pet Tiger
$200,000--Gold Teeth
$ 3 Million--Furs and Sergio Tacchini Velour Track
$ 5 Million--White Bitches


New York, L.A. Will be "Get" for Kerry
Yesterday, I noted that the GOP will be dropping a drug bomb at Kerry soon. Jacob Bernstien seems to agree using talk of a National Enquirer investigation to telegraph the charges JFK2's campaign will have to fend off.
In (the National Enquirer Investigation) a “former girlfriend” and “political insider” said the Massachusetts senator is so vain he wanted to “make love where he could see himself in the mirror;” has an extensive history smoking pot; has former girlfriends that include Hollywood insiders Morgan Fairchild and Catherine Oxenberg; is technically Christian, although Jewish by descent, and has had plastic surgery “at least once” to have his double chin turned into a, well, single chin. (WWD--last item)

Personally, I'm glad we're going to have a nominee that had a little work done on his face. Far from being a bad thing, where I come from plastic surgery is called "a sweet sixteen present." And drugs, well...

Atlas Shrugged
Though Time Warner cost shareholders billions of dollars with its disastrous merger with AOL, the Time Warner chairman is about to move into the swankiest, and priciest, office space in the city.
Parsons' suite of offices at the twin-towered Time Warner Center, is being built out at a cost of some $25 million and is to be completed next month. The raw space alone would be worth $20 million on the open market.

Monday, February 09, 2004

Finnish cats, sick of the sexual assaults on their Swedish brethern are wreaking vengeance on humans by eating them. I kid you not.
(The Drudge zone, baby)
Eeeeew, He's Stupid
Gothamist, on Jason Blair's memoir:
"...one of the first lines of Jayson Blair's new book, Burning Down My Master's House, is 'I lied, I lied, I lied.' Gothamist wonders if it's followed by 'I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.'"
Does Gothamist really think Blair is stupid? Let's see... He was one of the most hyped writers for America's premier newspaper by the time he was in his late twenties. A college dropout, he frequently fooled well healed, ivy-league editors with concocted stories on well-known topics. Now he's getting rich writing about it. Stupid? No. Annoying--yes. Sociopathic--startlingly so. Maybe Gothamist means stupid in the second-grader sense. As in, hey retard those Pro Keds are stupid. Or, that kid's haircut is stupid.

Reliable Source
In a reversal of the usual relationship between media blogs and print media, Rush and Molloy cite some Wonkette intel about Andrew Sullivan's work out clothes:
He showed up at Washington's Results the Gym "wearing a skimpy white tank tucked into Gap jeans and biker boots," a spy reports to politics blog Wonkette.com. Nice..."
Always the ironist, Anna Marie Wonkette flips it back to us in her Gossip Round-up--rinse, repeat edition.
Party Hacks
Five hours after President Bush's woefully limp performance on "Meet The Press" Peggy Noonan filed the GOP's spin on WSJ--Yes, W's showing was poor but Ronald Reagan couldn't do interviews either and that proves that good interviews do not good leaders make, she essentialy said. If the quickness with which Noonan's story was filed wasn't proof that Republican strategists weren't scared they would suffer fallout from the interview Drudge's "big scoop" on John Kerry certainly was. "You fake, you clown, you hack..." Matt D. screeched into his microphone last night at Kerry. "I'm not going to get into the botox thing, the drug thing--whether Kerry's using drugs" he ranted on.
So, expect Drudge to drop a drug bomb soon. He claimed the quote he would post later from Kerry in '92 should disqualify Kerry as the Dem. nominee. It proved that Kerry was playing politics with the war issue. Drudge was releasing it so soon so that the Democratic party "with it's fine tradition," could get it's house in order. The `a close race is good for America' routine that Safire introduced months ago.
Noonan as per usual, set the tone on party spin in print media. John Podhoretz today:
President Bush didn't deliver a peak performance on "Meet the Press" yesterday in the midst of the dreariest days of his presidency. But still, he was very much himself - He showed his usual discipline and restraint.
So it's print on defense and talk radio on offense. Which brings me to Drudge on A-List:
Drudge, Matt. FOD (Friend of Dorothy)... Ethically challenged hypocritical lackey and moral catamite to right-wingers. We remember you from the old days, Matt-o, and when you fall back to obscurity we'll be waiting with sharpened knives.
I'm sure there is plenty of dirt on this guy. Why wait until he falls back into obscurity. Find out what he's into now. Embarass him in front of his friends and benefactors. Splash it all over the net. Somebody needs to be willing to play just as rough as him.

A.O. Stalker, Part III (fashion edition)
Lachlan Murdoch backstage at the Sass Bide collection in Bryant Park--short with thinning hair.

Patrick McMullen, under the tent, regaling a friend with his 16 year old son's need to have a normal childhood despite having rubbed elbows with celebs at such a young age.

Stop the Presses
In what surely ranks as one of the biggest scoops of this century, today’s issue of the NY Times exposes nepotism in Holywood. I'm shocked, shocked... You mean Nicholas Cage, Jane and Peter Fonda, Cybill Shepherd, Tori Spelling, Rob Reiner, Norma Shearer, Jennifer Jones, Sofia Coppola, Natasha Gregson Wagner, Jason Schwartzmann etc. didn't make it because of talent alone? They weren't looked at with even more of a jaundiced eye by casting directors because of who their parents/husbands were as they insist?

The article centers on Billy Friedken being tapped to helm an upcoming picture at the mountain. Billy Friedken is the husband of Sherry Lansing, the head of the studio. The move seems to buttress the charge made by Joe Eszterhas that Billy Friedken was hired to direct "Jade" as a sop to his ego despite the screenwriters' objections. As Low Culture points out, male studio execs have been securing roles for their wives and girlfriends since W.D. Griffith. (Link via Whatevs)

But, there is an interesting piece to this article. The feature that is allegedly raising eyebrows in Hollywood is "The Man Who Kept Secrets." It is a bio-pic of the late Sidney Korshak, a lawyer who represented the mob in Hollywood. He was close with Lew Wasserman and the pair virtually ran Hollywood for decades. Sydney Korshak was also a kingmaker being especially close with John Kennedy. Robert Evans, tight with Korshak in his own right, is producing. If the film accurately represents Korshak’s power in Hollywood it could be a seminal film for movie and history buffs.

Choire High Life
Choire Gawker (no link necessary, natch) is in a spread in Febrauary's Gotham Magazine (no online content) with all of NYC's other illustrious gossip columnists. He looks much better without dental floss on his face. Gotham is the magazine with an "audience of unparalleled affluence and influence." The article claims that Choire writes a gossip column five times a week. Is Choire Gawker a columnist? Well, if Gotham Magazine says so.
Interestingly Enough, My Nickname is Le Weekender Too
But the (Cialis) has also relied on publicity and word of mouth in those strictly regulated markets, and because of its 36-hour duration, it has received a lot of each. Most notable is its unofficial nickname: the weekender or, even better, le weekender. This calls to mind not a monogamous long-term relationship but rather a macho swinger or a movie on an adult pay-per-view channel menu.

Sunday, February 08, 2004

A.O. Interview
I have been greatly concerned, of late, about the triumph of celebrity culture in the blogosphere. The NYC blogosphere is not something to be taken lightly. The blogeratti (and me) must take our role, as a shining beacon for humanity seriously. Now I like to let my hair down as much as the next fellow and I am certainly no geek but, I am concerned. So without further ado, here is the first in my fifty-part, seventeen volume “Blue Collar New Yorkers” interview series.

Name Withheld—Police Officer

The Basics
Age and occupation. How long have you lived here, where did you come from, and where do you live now?
I was born and raised in Crooklyn, NY (that’s Brooklyn for the hip-hop illiterate.) I’m 30 and a cop in the 7-9 precinct. You have to say it 7-9 if you want to be down. That’s in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. I live off of the Long Island Sound on a 22 footer fishing boat that was confiscated from some drug dealers. I used to live in a nice split-level house in Bayridge with my wife but she kicked me out for shooting out the lights when I was drunk. This is only a temporary situation though.

Wow, weren’t you suspended for that?
I was put on light duty for a while. I can’t go into it.

Three for thee
1. You emerged from the Brooklyn guido scene and now you're one of New York City’s Finest. Can you describe how the former affected the latter?
Well, we used to beat up black people a lot. And now I arrest a lot of black people. Is that what you mean?

2. As a life-long citizen of the second borough, please give me your real quick-take on the following.
Manhattan: Fucking hate it, too many museums.
Staten Island: A smelly shit hole.
Queens: Too many immigrants.
Bronx: Are you kidding me? I see enough of that shit at work.
Jersey: I hope to move there someday.

3. You went to Iona College in the greater New York metropolitan area for two years and then failed out but do you have any advice for the Olsen Twins who'll be attending NYU in the fall?
If they ever want to go fishing they should give me a call.

Schopenhauer-Lacan-Lipton-Anonyblogger Questionnaire
Please share a personal (and hopefully interesting) NYC taxi story.
Cabs don’t come to Brooklyn.

Time travel question: What era, day or event in New York's history would you like to re-live?
Back in the heyday of prohibition when cops were getting rich from big bribes--that must have been something else.

9pm, Wednesday night - what are you doing?
On my boat with a case of Bud Light watching “The Apprentice” on my twelve-inch black and white TV. Oh yeah, and contemplating suicide.

What's the most expensive thing in your wardrobe?
Anything of value, my ex-wife kept.

Where do you summer?

Of all the movies made about (or highly associated with) New York, what role would you have liked to be cast in?
“Raging Bull,” “Goodfellas,” even “Mean Streets.” Anything with DeNiro.

The End of the World is finally happening. What are you going to do with your last 24 hours in NYC?
Kill my ex-wife.

(Ed. note--With thanks to Krucoff, Gothamist and ET.)

Friday, February 06, 2004

"Tongue in Chick" Would Have Been Better
If NYTBR hurries with "Chip" McGrath's replacement they can hit the newstands with Paris Hilton's memoir, "Tongue-in-Chic: Paris Hilton's Confessions of an Heiress."

It looks like Nick Denton sold the 13 page Paris Hilton book proposal to TSG.
"The kids over at The Smoking Gun have kindly offered to host it..."
I wonder how much the dude that leaked it to Gawker got?

In any event, as you would expect, there is plenty of good stuff in there but, my favorite passage is:
Tinkerbell's Story of Life as an Heiress' Dog--by Tinkerbell Hilton
"I don't talk to any of the mutts. I only hang out with poodles. That's because I learned from the best.
I never pee on the floor, I always pee outside. An heiress dog such as myself doesn't need a leash--I only have one because I'm entitled."

Elstree Babylon, Holywood Babylon
A few days ago I was watching "A Royal Wedding" (1951). It's a Stanley Donen dance picture with Fred Astaire, Jane Powell, Keenan Wynn, Peter Lawford and Sarah Churchill. It has Astaire dancing on the ceiling, a particularly winsome Lawford as some sort of duke, contented cockneys and Keenan Wynn playing an American theatrical agent and his English twin brother. But, most interestingly, it has Sarah Churchill as a middle-class ballerina in love with Fred Astaire. Ms. Churchill, an accomplished dancer in real life, was Winston's daughter. The upshot of this is that about ten years after the movie was made Sarah killed herself. Here was a talented, pretty in a solid Anglo-Saxon way, very rich, and extremely well-connected woman who just could not deal with life. She had, like her father, always suffered from depression but didn't deal with it as well. It proves that sometimes everything isn't enough. And the suicide must have been horrible on Winston; here was a man that controlled the destinies of nations but was not able to assuage the pain of his own daughter.

Speaking of movie careers that are way over, there is Ben Affleck. J-Lo might survive (emphasis on might) but Ben and Bennifer, for that matter, are done. The coming attractions for Kevin Smith's "Jersey Girl" are out and boy, is the movie a dog. Ben plays a high paid Manhattan flack that gives up the bright lights and big bucks to take care of his burdensome daughter or something. On some level one congratulates Affleck for being such a whore. It takes endurance and will to whore yourself out movie after movie. He has no artistic pretensions and why should he? There are enough prima donnas in Hollywood concerned about their oeuvre but at some point an actor has to be choosy to stay in the games. I doubt anyone will miss him and in a few years he'll be able to make a comeback. Then it's only a short jump to the HFPA DeMille lifetime achievement award.
Wave of Mutilation
Even though I'm a day late and thirty-five cents short (blogging time is fast but cheap); I wouldn't have the interests of my nine readers at heart if I didn't jump on the Michael Pitt story with all the sound and fury of Martha Stewart losing six grand in the market. So, Gawker calls him the new Greasy "It" Boy, The Post questions the size of his manhood and Elizabeth Spiers gets into the mix, doing some first hand reporting:
"When people tried to talk to him, his eyes glazed over and he stared at some point over their heads and grinned. I remarked to a friend of mine that Pitt seemed either `really mellow or really stoned.'"
“Just say no” types over at The Kicker, they are. Joyce Wadler however, perhaps in love, is more generous:
"Mr. Pitt was fidgety and rebellious. Before he let (the press) cross-examine him, he drew a cigarette from a torn pocket. He played with the unlit cigarette... His plush pink lips sucked in the tobacco, his eyes looked like pools, he blew smoke at the lenses like a baby dragon."
Wadler's finely wrought prose describing Pitt's smoking technique is also worth a look.

Fleshbot is linking to some Jeanette Wells dish about Britney Spear's people threatening a suit against British News of The World, the Sunday tabloid. The NOFTW story describes Britters watching porn with some pals in a London hotel room. Britters watching porn with female pals is an old story. A year and a half ago, her and Jenna Jameson were reported to be getting together to check out sapphic vids. When reached for comment on the story, Jameson's flacks had "no comment."

Thursday, February 05, 2004

Sauced on Translation
Wonkette won't be satisfied until Tina Brown is curled up in a fetal position under her desk saying "penis! penis! penis! Oh my God--Peeennnis!"
Psychoanalyzing Tina Brown's column:
"[Clinton] was feisty but still big," Stephanopoulos said. "There was no sense of shrinking."
Does Levitra have a 1-800 number?

Observer: God, William Buckley should be Careful of Company They Keep
Rupert Murdoch is using his columnists to open up on John Kerry, now that he is the probable Democratic nominee. Richard Johnson reaches back to 1972 when Kerry's brother broke into the headquarters of a political adversary. Isn't Page Six was a gossip column? Howie Carr throws everything he can think of at Kerry including charges of elitism, marrying for money, freeloading and bullying. Carr's sources--including radio talk-show callers--seem spurious. But The NY Post never let little things like reputable sources get in their its especially when talking for Murdoch.

Another Tinseltown tell-all is hitting the stacks soon, "Hollywood Interrupted" by Andrew Breitbart and Mark Ebner. The usual suspects are raked over the coals including Michael Eisner, Robert Evans and Courtney Love. Hollywood Hacks squeezed Evans dry for juicy dish when he first fell from grace and now they're giving him another go. Now Eisner, on the ropes, can expect to take plenty of hits from the screenwriters he didn't hire.

Scott Eyeman at The Observer gives "Hollywood Animal" the review it deserves: This tale of hubris followed by contrition is completed by Mr. Eszterhas’ claim that "God [is] a newfound friend"—to which one can only say: He should be more careful of the company he keeps.

While we're around to the peach sheets the editorial page is a good take on Conrad Black ending with: Mr. Buckley wrote that Lord Black was among his "five closest friends in the world." We’d like to know who his other four closest friends are, so we can keep our hands in our pockets when we meet them. One is reminded of Michael Wolff's spirited defense of Black back when the shit first hit the fan. Wolff's Black is an old fashioned press baron who got in trouble because of his risk taking, carelessness and bluster. All that not withstanding, it's too bad, nobody writes obits like Black's Daily Telegraph.

Alexandra Wolfe seems very excited about "Faking It," A&E's upcoming reality show; she's been plugging it steadily. What New York needs is a daily Observer. Seriously.

Thursday is PopbitchDay
At the end of filming (Dogville) Nicole Kidman finally snapped, and tearfully asked Lars "What do I have to do to make you like me?"
Von Trier's reply? "Fuck me and give me all your money."

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

JJ Takes Fall For Nip Slip
Janet Jackson is being a good Mouseketeer; taking the fall for "nipplegate." Expect repayment from Viacom to be sizable and frequent. Also, Jon Lovitz has managed to get involved in the brouhaha. After 25 years in comedy, he is managing to get a few laughs by being serious. He is quite assured that the nip-slip was the result of a wardrobe malfunction: "She freaked out and said, 'Oh no!' because it wasn't supposed to happen. She had that red thing underneath but it got ripped away -- that's all." Times are tough all over, I guess.
AO Stalker, Part II
A couple of nights ago I saw Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick downstairs at Hue. My date was smoking and SJP said to her "I thought I smelled a cigarette." Broderick looked really pale, puffy and hammered. He better start working out if he wants to be ready for "The Producers." Anyway, I told Matthew that I had seen him on Broadway a few times and the conversation somehow turned to blogging.
AO--Do you have a blog Matthew?
MB--I just don't have the time.
SJP--He's such a liar he's just too lazy. Look at the size of the guy. Do you blog?
AO--I sure do.
AO's date--Eeeew, that's lame.
SJP--Are you kidding me? It's damn sexy. I'd leave with your boyfriend right now if I weren’t married.
AO--Oh, she's not my girlfriend.
SJP--(Laughing) Well, that's only half the problem.
MB--Can we leave? I've got an early call in the morning.
AO--Don't lie. You haven't done anything since "Election."
MB--Who are you exactly?
AO--My name is AO and I have an unpopular but well regarded blog of the same name.
MB--Well regarded--Now who's lying?
SJP--Oooh you’re kidding me? I read your blog every day.
MB--Gothamist Rules.
SJP--As I was saying. I'm doing a shoot in the mountains of Mongolia and we won't have Internet access but every day I'll have the NY Times and a printed screen shot of Anonymous Outsider delivered by dogsled. It was a rider in my contract.
MB--We're leaving now! (Under breath) Fuck this. I'm calling Chris at Salon. (Drags off SJP.)
SJP--Bye AO.
AO--Bye Guys.
AO's Date--I have to go too. Alone. Blogging--yikes.

Like a Large Dog Riding a Very Small Flee
Reading the Salon article about anonybloggers I realized that there is another angle to Gothamist's diss of anonymous bloggers--jealousy. Jake and Scott publish blogs with similar subject matter and the former was jealous that he wasn't chosen for the Post article. I think with that in mind we can all point our fingers in Salon's direction (for taking up a cause borne of such questionable motives), laugh and move on.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Simon Cow--er Doonan Unleashes Fury
On tonight's episode of "America's Top Model" Simon Doonan rips into one of the contestants for "looking like a Hunt's Point working girl;" making the girl cry. Doonan reports that he wasn't fazed: "I didn't feel bad because her bladder is very near her eyeballs, as the Irish say. She cries at anything." How sweet.
How Not to Read "Hollywood Animal"
Since I've already read three hundred pages of Eszterhas' bloated tome, Slate's review comes too late for me. However, others might be luckier. Where Phoebe Eaton at the Observer only imagined what a "Hollywood Animal" index might look like, Slate's Bryan Curtis has actually put one together. Print it out and take it to Barnes and Noble. Save yourself $27 and some time. It misses my favorite passage, though. Robert Evans in a stained shirt looking over his desk at Paramount office and wondering why it is covered with polaroids of naked women as he is an important man and it should be piled high with memos and scripts. (Slate article via TMFTML.)

NY Sun—Dasher of Dreams
First the NY Sun destroyed my fantasy about how much better off New Yorkers would be with a second daily broadsheet. Now the same paper has dashed another of my media fantasies: the one about being invited to a Jennifer 8 Lee party. Apparently, if the Sun's puff piece is to be believed, Ms. 8 Lee did not get her moniker because she always had an 8-ball in her pocket and cases of Veuve Clicquot for the guests of her famed D.C. parties. In fact, 8 Lee's parties are BYOB affairs where milky almond tea and homemade dumplings are served and the hostess is frequently off to bed early--sober. Her picture, culled from Friendster, makes it clear that my idea of Lee as a Lucy Liu in blue stockings had little basis in reality either. So how did Jen Lee get her quirky middle name?
After too many identity confusions with her popular name, she and her parents, who immigrated to New York from Taiwan in the 1970s, added the digit — the most auspicious numeral in China.

Dailies Talk Monthlies
In today's NY Sun, Russ Smith rants about Graydon Carter:
I’m baffled by (Carter's) relatively sudden transformation from a purveyor of satire, celebrity, and keen cultural criticism to a disgruntled scold who appears headed for a nervous breakdown.
This is nothing but right-wing dissapointment with Vanity Fair.

Greg Lindsay at WWD is claiming that The Source's feud with Eminem has cost the hip-hop monthly advertisers and jobs.

Please Kill Me
Gothamist posts an interview of Chuck Klosterman today.
Who do you consider to be the greatest New Yorker of all-time?
Lew Alcindor: definitively NYC in every possible way (physically, intellectually, personally, etc.)

That's Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to you and me and everyone else born after 1950. So why does Klosterman call him Lew Alcindor? There might be something in the air over at Gothamist that turns even the most jaded hipsters into fusty old women. Or the answer may be found in the NY Press August 28, 2003 review of Klosterman's book "Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs;" entitled "Please Kill Me:"
Klosterman is, quite simply and almost literally, an ass. His soft, saggy face bears a disturbing resemblance to a 50-year-old man’s failing, hairless back end.

Monday, February 02, 2004

The Pubic Wars
New York Magazine describes the circulation battles waged between Playboy and Penthouse in the 1970's in a profile of Bob Guccione. Lynn Barber on how Guccione knew he was successful: “Bob told me he knew he’d made it when he didn’t have to sleep with the girls he photographed...

Gothamist in Tizzy
Gothamist, combination A.M. for the blog set and Law & Order fansite has issued another fatwa. As well as being opposed to personal blogs they are opposed to anonymous bloggers. Last month they wrote:
There will be a fight for the word "blog" as the rift between online journal-diary style blogs and all other blogs deepens. When it turns out that non-personal blogs are written by people with lives and personal blogs are written by shut-ins who can't write...
And today:
We believe all bloggers should stand behind their posts with their real names. If you can't do that, you shouldn't be blogging.
Apparently, if Gothamist had its way all blogs would be self-conscious, stylized snoozefests filled with un-funny news wraps and love notes to b-list TV stars.
Something tells me Jake Dobkin wasn't the coolest kid in school.

Beyonce Is getting married to Jay-Z?
So says the London Daily Star. Alas, poor Prince William.

Bonnie Fuller gets some really bad dish from her kitchen staff (NYP)...

Sunday, February 01, 2004

Janet's Superbowl Tits Blitz (With Pic)
"Top CBS executives approved a musical skit where Janet Jackson would expose her breast during the MTV-produced Super Bowl half-time concert, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned.
'The decision to go forward went to the very top of the network,' a well-placed source explained from New York."

(A.O. Update--Timberlake is claiming Jackson's "costume malfunctioned." That's a costume that er--malfunctioned.)

Jack Paar: "What do you do for exercise?"
Oscar Levant: "I stumbe and then I fall into a coma."

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