Z. Madison

For when you're relaxing at home or killing company time - Z. Madison's here for you.


The New Face of H&M

It was announced today that Madonna will star in a new H&M campaign. You know H&M - that European knock-off home of cheap yet ubertrendy fashions whose size labels you simply need it ignore and instead try everything on hiding behind racks lest you stand on line for half an hour to get into the dressing rooms.

It's an interesting choice. Having worked on the account for a nano-second, I found it to be truly perplexing. H&M targets young females. Madonna's pushing 50. Granted, she's got the body of a 20 year old and is always ahead of the fashion curve. But still...

Then, it all came together.

If you're a fan of the stores, you'll know that for the past two years, they've introduced special lines by hot designers (Karl Lagerfield and Stella McCartney both have held the annual honor). These special lines cause mass chaos in the flagship stores in which the goods were sold. Stella's line sold out in a mere hour.

This November, Victor & Rolf are slated to be the designers de jour and it's likely that Madonna will star in their special campaign. Save your pennies and plan your vacation day accordingly my little fashionistas. The ensuing shopping frenzy will land in a major metro hub near you in a few short months.

I'll be sure to keep an eye on WWD (and pump my former colleagues for info) to share with you the distribution date.


Pushing 30 - Part I

When I was graduating from college, I had a ten year plan. I was going to concur the world. I was going to embark on a highly successful career path, get married, take time out to have kids while pursuing a graduate degree while bouncing said baby on my knee and reenter the workforce with gusto by the time...I was 30.

What a crock of shit.

I'm now 28 and have no fucking idea what to do with my life.

Let me regress...In the spring of 1997, I was pre-law at Oswego University (SUNY if you must - and only SUNY because Boston University couldn't give me the financial aid I needed and hell, I'm still paying SUNY off...) and finishing up my degree. With a year and a half left, I needed something to do. Part of my major called for taking two electives in another major's track. I chose Communications, figuring that what I loved about Law was really the manipulation of ideas (it's sick and twisted, I know, but hey...that's me) and how better to do that than public speaking and mass media? The classes I chose were BRC 108 - Broadcasting and Mass Media and shocker - Intro to Public Speaking.

I LOVED these classes and finally felt like I'd finally gotten in touch with some piece of my personality and skillset that had been idling under the surface.

Fuck the LSATS. I was now a double major in Poly Sci and PR. I would strive for a BA in BS.

Flash forward to summer of junior year. I've now enjoyed a full year of Comm courses and it was time to get an internship. Enter: LIVE! with Regis and Kathie Lee.

I saw a flyer, one of those cheap non-standout kinds on green paper with black ink outside the "Career Resources Center." It screamed ABC INTERNSHIPS!!! APPLY NOW!!! Well, I whipped up a resume, put my graphic arts/press release/crap portfolio together, hitched a predawn ride with my housemate through a snowstorm to the bus station in Syracuse, hopped a Greyline with the last $40 I had and arrived at the alienlike Port Authority, suitcase in hand, on a random spring morning. I negotiated the 20something blocks to 66th/Columbus Avenue on time to arrive at the ABC studio at 9am to.....wait. And wait. And.....wait some more.

At least 500 people went on one-on-one interviews before me. My boyfriend at the time, god bless his dear heart, arrived at 4pm to sit with me (he lived on Long Island). At 5 pm, a very tired looking woman with a clipboard called the seven of us remaining without a notion of humanity in her voice.

I was ON.

(and I must add, I can rock a suit)

We got called to the LIVE! With Regis and Kathie Lee table. All fucking seven of us. But to hell with them, I thought, this is my interview. I interrupted the bored interviewer by practically shoving my black-bound portfolio in her face. "Excuse me, Ms. XX XX, when we're finished here, would you mind taking a look at my portfolio? I would greatly appreciate your professional opinion," all while flipping through the good stuff. Ms. XX XX was impressed, shown only by her arched and perfectly waxed right brow. She looked me dead in the eye and said..."Um, stay here...we'll be done in a minute."

The plebes around me sighed in defeat. The internship was mine! Well....two months later after I'd harassed Ms. XX XX into giving me the spot, the created-soley-for-me-I-hung-in-regis'-office-not-the-stageset-below-internship was mine. What a summer...


I Heart Coney Island

And apparently, so does NYC. They've approved $1 BILLION dollars to renovate the neglected seaside escape to help restore it into the glory it once was.


I've been a resident of Brooklyn for nearly seven years and every summer I've made it a point to take the F train to the end of the line to take a ride on the Cyclone, play a few rounds of skeeball, enjoy a Nathan's in the sunshine and a beer at Ruby's. True, the place is still a piece of shit, but a promising piece of shit. You need to keep to the boardwalk (Requiem For A Dream got north of it right), but the Aquarium and the Cyclones' ballpark (minor league Mets team - how adorable when they play the Staten Island Yankees they call it the "Ferry Series" instead of the Subway Series) have poured much needed revenue and family friendly tourism into the area.

So, to kick off my summer, I'm dragging the boyfriend down to the Stillwell Avenue stop (he's a lifelong nyer and having not been there in years, still thinks it's gang turf - "I'm not wearing flipflops - we might need to run.") to once again try my luck at skeeball, take a rickety ride on the Cyclone, marvel at the Wonder Wheel - still running since 1920! and perhaps catch a freakshow. To thank him for making the trek, I'll buy him a hotdog and a beer (or two or three) at Ruby's.

Happy Memorial Day, dear readers.

PS - Let's not forget what Monday's all about and while your BBQing or sunning yourself, please take a moment to respect those that gave their lives so we can go about our weekend fun.

UPDATE: The Cyclone's still scary as hell (we rode in the front car and a tip for you, dear readers, if you hand the guy running it an extra $4 he'll let you keep your seat for another ride), the Wonderwheel continues to amaze, Nathan's still delivers - but stay away from the orange slushy, my reign as Skeeball champion lives on and the sharks at the aquarium are unsettling to say the least. To mark the occasion, the boyfriend won me an adorable stuffed Husky as a souvenir. All in all, a great day.

And The Sexiest Baby Alive Is....


Angelina and Brad had a little girl, Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt, yesterday in Nambia. Now that name is a mouthful. Shiloh is a name of Hebrew origin meaning, "His gift," per thinkbabynames.com.

Congrats to the happy couple. We should be seeing pictures of the little one soon, as it's been reported that an American weekly magazine (I'm guessing People) paid nearly $5 million bucks - almost all of which will likely go to a charity of the proud parents' choice - for exclusive rights to the first pictures.


It's A Boy!

It's hit the news wires that Gwen Stephanie had a baby boy this afternoon. While Mom and Dad are still trying to settle on a name (rumor is that it'll be King I shit you not), there's no doubt, pun intended, that the kid will be sporting the best baby gear manufactured.

Click on the Title above for US Weekly's full breakdown.

UPDATE: www.eonline.com reports the baby's official name as...Kingston James McGregor Rossdale, or King for short. Between Suri and King, Brangelina's Sexiest Baby Alive has some tough competition. I'm on the edge of my seat with anticipation for little Jolie-Pitt's moniker.


Pug Bowling

My boyfriend isn't as crazy about pugs as I am. I fear that should I get Clinton, he'd do something like this:

Long Live The Hoff!

The best part of American Idol's big finale last night? The camera shot of David Hasselhoff crying like a baby.

While the memory still has me in stiches, I had to wonder - what the hell was he doing there? After scouring the internet, I've found my answer. The Hoff was there in a publicity stunt to promote his new role as a judge on NBC's upcoming summer season filler America's Got Talent. It's produced by none other than Simon Cowell. Regis Philbin is set to host and with Hasselhoff as a judge, at the very least, the show will be good for a few laughs.

For a hilarious clip providing evidence of The Hoff's 'talent' click here: http://zmadison.blogspot.com/2006/01/long-live-hoff.html

Congrats Coopers!

Inasmuch as I like to consider myself a NYer, I did once hail from somewhere else. The eastern end of Long Island. Southampton. Yes, as in "The Hamptons."

Yes, it was a beautiful place to grow up. And no, I don't go out there during the summers often because half the city does. But, I've always thought the beaches are among the best and still feel landlocked if I'm not by the water.

Reading the annual ranking of US Beaches, released today, made me nostalgic and proud at the same time. Cooper's Beach made the ranking at #4.

Ironically, Coopers was the beach none of us would go to once we were in high school. It wasn't "cool." (Flying Point was where we had our parents drop us off until we were old enough to drive ourselves.) Coopers was where all the families with little kids could go since the waves were non-existent And, it was where all the high schoolers went at night in part because attached to the huge parking lot, there's a semi-circle ramp you could drive on with a gorgeous view of the ocean to the right. Many a doughnut were pulled in that parking lot. Many a makeout session were held on that ramp. Ah, the memories...

(I'm also snickering that we beat out our nemesis Easthampton.)

The Top 10:
1. Fleming Beach Park, Maui, Hawaii
2. Caladesi Island State Park, Dunedin, Florida
3. Ocracoke Island, Outer Banks, North Carolina
5. Hanalei Beach, Kauai, Hawaii
7. Coast Guard Beach, Cape Cod, Massachusetts
8. Coronado Beach, San Diego, California
9. Hamoa Beach, Maui, Hawaii
10. Barefoot Beach Park, Bonita Springs, Florida


I Heart Ben & Jerry's

Not two minutes after my Planner left for lunch he called me from his cell:

"You gotta go downstairs. Ben & Jerry's is handing out free ice cream cones on the corner!"

Obviously, I needed to spread this divine word and half the surrounding cubes joined me in the elevator for the 33 floor ride down to euphoria. It was happy chaos on the street. Everywhere you looked there were NYers sitting and standing, enjoying thier cookie dough and cherry garcia cones. People even hopped out of cabs waiting at a red light to grab one.

Once finished, there was no option but to leave the sunshine and head back to our windowless cubeland. The Ben & Jerry's moment was over.

If you live in NY, San Fran or Chicago, keep your eyes peeled today as Ben & Jerry's will be staging the conefest at random corners all over our fair cities. Enjoy!


This Is Really Thinking Outside The Box

The fine landmark you see above is the Brooklyn House of Detention. In layman's terms - The Brooklyn Jail. It resides on the corner of Smith St. and Atlantic Ave. lurking over the hipster shopping and eating Mecca to the South. There's also a quaint Quaker School next door. I've always looked at it with a bit of disdain and imagined the incarcerated inmates to be driven crazy being able to see all the hustle and bustle down below.

Well, I'm wrong. It's sitting empty. Just one more prime piece of real estate in a land hungry enclave whose property values are sending hopeful buyers into a tizzy.

Imagine my surprise when I saw the unthinkable today on www.curbed.com. The jail is going to be renovated into...Luxury Housing.

Get the fuck out! was my first thought, too.

"Dumbo developer Jed Walentas, the Brooklyn Paper reports, is proposing knocking down the current Big House (renovated over the last decade to the tune of $50 million) and replacing it with two Big Houses, one a luxury building and the other for inmates. Meanwhile, the Department of Corrections is sorting through proposals for the prime property and looking into plans to reopen the House of D (as a jail), with retail at street level. Rather gives new meaning to "mixed use" development, doesn't it?"

I'm speechless.

In Honor of Bond's Hitting 714 Home Runs

As I'm sure you've have heard, Barry Bonds just tied Babe Ruth's Home Run Record. Already many critics are putting an * next to his name in the history books.

A couple of months back, Letterman had some advice as to how Bonds could improve his reputation. I think it merits another look.

Top Ten Ways Barry Bonds Can Improve His Image
As presented by Dave Letterman on 3.28.06

10. Lucky fan gets to inject him in the ass
9. Develop an exit strategy for Iraq
8. Start an erotic blog
7. Change name to Barry the Cable Guy
6. Open retail chain: Big & Tall & 'Roidy
5. Star in one of them "We Have 15 Kids" movies with Bonnie Hunt
4. For every homer he hits, donate 500 bucks to the good people at Balco
3. Auction autographed syringes on eBay
2. Switch from steroids to hookers to become like lovable Babe Ruth
1. For the love of God, give some of them 'roids to the Knicks!

Congrats Charlie

ABC announced today that Charlie Gibson will, at last, officially take over for Elizabeth Vargas when she goes on maternity leave later this month. It's a rather open ended position (as he's covering for Bob Woodruff), but one that Gibson has been groomed for.

"I am humbled to accept this new assignment. I have witnessed firsthand the grace and determination of every member of the staff of 'World News Tonight.' I look forward to joining this extraordinary team and to helping the broadcast start a new chapter," Gibson said."

I love Charlie. I grew up with Joan Lunden and Charlie on GMA. Seeing him go from awe-shucks morning man to evening news guy was great. ABC tested him by trotting him out to cover political and hard news stories and Charlie always rose to the occasion. When Peter got ill, Charlie stepped right up to the plate. While I'm still hoping Bob makes a full recovery and Elizabeth remains someone I completely respect and look forward to seeing more of once she returns, I'm happy for Charlie.

Now go kick that Katie's ass, Charlie!

(I'm also smirking at Diane Sawyer's impending no-more-wire-hangers-meltdown moment as you know she's pissed)

It's That Time Of Year Again

As of tomorrow afternoon, the boys will be back in town. Women will swoon and children salute as massive amounts of white clad tourists descend upon the city to empty our dive bars of cheap beer and females of questionable morals. That's right, dear readers, it's once again Fleet Week.

Consider yourself warned.


In Honor of the Yanks playing Boston Tonight...

A classic pic for you of the Zimmer (age 73) and Pedro Martinez (the now angelic and beloved Mets pitcher) 'fight' back in October of '03.

To Pedro's credit, it was Zimmer who charged him first, and you know how aggressive those feisty septuagenarians with metal plates in their head can be...

Ikea's Coming! Ikea's Coming!

Now that all the protesting is over, demolition has begun in Red Hook to finally begin the construction of NYC's own Ikea. It'll be situated near the Home Depot that those who've ventured south of Hamilton Ave are already regular customers of.

Check out www.curbed.com for more demo pics.

UPDATE: I apologize, dear readers. I had assumed that Ikea had mind-melded its way into the masses. Apparently, our friends in the bread basket do not have access nor are they aware of this import.

Ikea (eye-kee-ya): Noun; def - Home of questionable quality (but uber-cool design) Swedish housing goods priced so efficiently that they elicit complete abandonment of all rational fiscal responsibility.


Thank You Google...

...for reminding me that today is Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's birthday with your kitschy new logo.


I Just Love Me Some Pugs

I want a dog. Not just any dog, but a Pug. His name will be Clinton and I'll dress him in a studded collar and Brooklyn hoodie. He'll be a badass little punk. I'll walk him on a Yankee logo leash. All the bitches will be enamored.

The problem? 9-5 is not something my industry is known for. I live alone in Brooklyn and work in midtown. There's a doggie daycare down the road from my apartment, but that's just ridiculous. I'm sure there's dog walkers available, but do I really want to hand over the keys to my apartment/world to a total stranger?

Then there's Venus. It's been V and I against the world since I found the abandoned little lump of fur the summer before my junior year of college. V's about to celebrate her 8th birthday next month. Being the lazy fat cat that she's become, having a puppy around might literally give her a heart attack.

And, there's my reputation to consider. If Clinton arrives, then I'd be "that girl." You know, the one that lives alone in Brooklyn with a cat...and a dog.

So, to stave off the impending spinsterhood label, I've compromised. His/her name is Jaws. He/she is a delightful little goldfish I won in my hood's streetfair.

I've housed him/her in a spacious and yet charming bowl complete with oversized glass beads. He/she swims happily around occasionally bumping into one of the clear beads like a bird flying into a sliding glass door. (apparently he/she's not that bright). Unfortunately, Jaws' abode must reside on top of the fridge as V would view him/her merely as an amusing snack.

So for now, it's just going to be me, Ms V and Jaws. Ah, but much like his namesake, I have a feeling it'll be Clinton in '08...

Tommy's Lost His Damn Mind

It's rumored by industry insiders that Tommy Hilfiger's a huge cokehead. Well, he must have been on something Thursday night when the fashionista went apeshit and attacked Axl Rose at Rosario Dawson's 27th birthday party.

Apparently it all started when Axl sat down and moved Tommy's girlfriend's drink. Tommy proceeded to smack a stunned Axl. The smacks turned to punches. When one punch landed on Axl's face, security came and Hilfiger was bounced from the club. Through it all, Axl was like a deer in headlights - just utterly flabbergasted.

Club owner Noel Ashman pointed the finger at Hilfiger: "Axl was a gentleman and had the good sense not to retaliate, as he would have done some serious damage to Hilfiger."

Axl was there to serenade the birthday girl. When Rose took the stage a few minutes later to perform the song "You're Crazy," he dedicated it "to my good friend Tommy Hilfiger."


Literally, this is going to be in my backyard

From my bathroom, I have a great view of a large swath of Brooklyn (once you overlook the elevated F line). For the past six months or so, I've noticed construction on an apartment building who's back intersects with my backyard. The design is very modern in our little brownstone hamlet. It's now up to six stories, and I'd assumed that the construction was finished and soy-latte-sippers would soon be moving in. Then, I saw this piece on www.curbed.com:

"The great Daily News rat infestation article made passing reference to an 11-story building at 100 Luquer Street in Carroll Gardens that's currently under construction. We forgot about it until now, but there it is above, in all its rendered glory from the Karl Fischer Architect website."

The damn thing is going to be 11 stories tall!!! WTF? Who'd they sleep with in the zoning office to get this slipped through? According to the pic above, how are they going to fit that on the tiny little Luquer Street? See the little beige blob in the back left - that's my apartment. This building is going to be a fucking monstrosity.

The drawing's shit though as they left out the elevated F line merely 200 yards to the right and there's no room for the semi-circle driveway in front. Also, that monstrosity is crammed inbetween 4 bordering brownstones and most certainly isn't as spacious as they're making it appear.

They might as well make the little coffee shop on the corner of Court St. a Starbucks, Josie's Salon a Gap and the little deli a Duane Reade.

Fucking gentrification. (the apartments do look sweet, though)

It's that time of year again...

The Bronx Bombers will be traveling to Shea to take on the Mets in the traditional Subway Series. Both NY teams are doing well so it should be a good one. (The Mets are still the National League East leaders and the Yankees are just a half game behind the Red Sox in the American league East)

Tonight will pit Randy Johnson (who'd better get his shit together and quick) against the Mets' Jeremy Gonzalez.

While NYers salivate over every play, I'm sure the rest of the country hopes we both lose.


Dumpwatch 2006

I didn't see this one coming...

The Long and Winding Road will indeed be ending for Sir Paul McCartney and his wife of four years, Heather Mills.

They announced yesterday that they will be separating. I thought these two would make it, truly.

Paul and Heather married four years after his first wife, Linda Eastman, died of breast cancer. The marriage to Heather apparently caused some tension with Paul's children, most notably his daughter Stella (who's clothing line I adore btw).

Paul and Heather have a little baby girl, Beatrice, who will undoubtedly find comfort in Hey Jude as she grows older.


Oh No! How did I miss this on Friday???

One of my favorite NYC establishments, Chumley's, almost burnt down on Thursday!

For those not in the know, Chumley's is one of original speakeasys still left in the West Village. It doesn't normally have the 'secret entrance' open on Barrow anymore, but 86 Bedford always beckoned you inside with tasty burgers, good jazz on the jukebox and their original brews (Heather's Honey is my favorite).

As reported on www.curbed.com "A fire blazed this afternoon at 84 Bedford, next door to Chumley's, the venerable West Village speakeasy-turned-bar/resto. Eater's got the preliminary word on the institution's fate: "Though the restaurant itself was not badly damaged by the blaze, it will remain closed until structural engineers have done an inspection and the place can be properly cleaned up."· Breaking: Fire Shuts Down Chumley's [Eater]"

Let's hope the huge portrait of Hemingway survived.

It's Upfront Week

The annual dog and pony show each broadcast network puts on to announce their annual season lineups begin today. NBC, the network that needs a hit the most will go first. At their meeting this afternoon, the following is expected to be announced:

Who Got The Axe:
Joey - Sorry, Matt and Drea, but is anyone really surprised by this?
Also given the boot - Teachers; midseason dramas Conviction, Heist and The Book of Daniel; the non-scripted Most Outrageous Moments, and fall 2005 occupants Surface, E-Ring, Three Wishes and Inconceivable

What's New (and Promising):
STUDIO 60 ON THE SUNSET STRIP - Friends star Matthew Perry returns to NBC in this one-hour dramatic look at life behind-the-scenes at a long-running sketch comedy series (reminiscent of Saturday Night Live). Also starring are Sex and the City’s Evan Handler, comedian D.L. Hughley, Sarah Paulson, Amanda Peet, former Wings star Steven Weber, and The West Wing’s Bradley Whitford.

30 ROCK - The head writer (Tina Fey) of a fictional sketch comedy called The Girly Show tries to come to terms with a temperamental star and a difficult executive producer. Alec Baldwin, Rachel Dratch, Jack McBrayer, and Tracy Morgan co-star.

What's Going On With Returning Favorites:
Three established series – My Name Is Earl, The Office (both will remain on Thursdays) and Law & Order: Criminal Intent – will move to new time periods, The Apprentice will be rested until midseason, Deal or No Deal will air two nights per week (Monday and Friday at 8 p.m.), and benched reality/competition The Biggest Loser will return to the Wednesday 8 p.m. anchor hour.

Those Crazy Brits

In a recent Reuters poll, it was discovered that "more than 60 percent of Britons use items such as screwdrivers, scissors and earrings to remove food from between their teeth."

Um, screwdrivers???

Tony, baby, talk to your people. Introduce them to the idea that floss is your friend, not a foe.


Funny W Pic of the Day

care of our friends at www.dlisted.com

I feel your pain, kid!


The MTA has made me it's bitch yet again

There's a ton of things I need to do this weekend, many of which involve leaving my little corner of the world in Carroll Gardens. The MTA, however, has decided that I should be held hostage. I've felt compassion for the L train riders on many an occasion, but I must say, the weekly plight of those living on the F line between Bergen and Smith/9th get shafted on a much more regular basis.

The MTA site has a feature that allows you to sign up for service disruption alerts. I've been a loyal subscriber for the past year or two. Here's the oh-so-helpful "Weekend Wrap-up" they've provided me with for this weekend:

F Train:

Downtown trains skip 23 and 14 Sts Weekend, 12:01 AM Sat to 5 AM Mon, May 6 - 8 & 13 - 15

Manhattan-bound trains skip Smith-9, Carroll, and Bergen Sts Weekend, 7 AM to 9 PM Sat and Sun, May 13 - 14

Summary: You are cockblocked from Manhattan. Take a cab or hike into DUMBO to catch something that may, or may not take you where you need to go.

G Train:
Manhattan-bound trains run express from 71-Continental to Roosevelt Avs Late night, 11:30 PM to 5 AM Mon to Fri, 12:01 AM to 5 AM Sat, May 8 - 13

No trains between Hoyt-Schermerhorn and Smith-9 Sts Weekend, 7 AM to 9 PM Sat and Sun, May 13 - 14

Trains run in two sections:1. Between 71-Continental and Bedford-Nostrand Avs 2. Between Bedford-Nostrand Avs and Hoyt-Schermerhorn Sts Weekend, 7 AM to 9 PM Sat and Sun, May 13 - 14

Trains run in two sections: 1. Between 71-Continental and Bedford-Nostrand Avs 2. Between Bedford-Nostrand Avs and Smith-9 Sts Late night, 10 PM to 5 AM Wed to Fri, May 10 - 12

Summary: I hate on the G line as it's the bastard red headed stepchild of the subway system regardless. Poor thing doesn't even get the chance to go into Manhattan. But even this train will not collect my sorry self from Carroll St.

A Train:

Brooklyn-bound trains run on the F from West 4 to Jay Sts Weekend, 11 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, May 12 - Jul 3 (normal service Jun 2 - 5), 11 PM Fri to 8 PM Sat, May 26 - 27

Brooklyn-bound trains run on the F from West 4 to Jay Sts Late night, 11 PM to 5 AM Mon to Fri until Jul 7 (normal service May 29 - 30 and Jul 4 - 5)

Trains run local in both directionsWeekend, 11 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, May 5 - 8

Uptown trains skip Spring, 23, and 50 Sts Weekend, 11 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, May 12 - 15

Avoid transfers to 4 5 at Fulton StWeekday, rush hour until 12:01 AM Tue, Jun 6

Summary: Just avoid taking the A at all until after July 4th as it's having a schitzo meltdown.

Thanks for that most helpful update, MTA.

For Your Penance, Please Say 3 Our Fathers...

An Ohio priest, Rev. Gerald Robinson, was convicted Thursday of murdering a nun as she prepared for Easter Mass at a hospital 26 years ago.

According to the AP report, "Sister Margaret Ann Pahl was stabbed 31 times through an altar cloth, with the punctures forming an upside down cross. Her killer then anointed her with a smudge of her blood on the forehead to humiliate her in death, prosecutors said."

You're one sick fuck, Father.

You know it's only a matter of time before Hollywood runs with this story.



The F Train Follies

Beware this guy, riders...The flasher from back in March who exposed himself to a 15 year old girl on the 7 train, is at it again. Both the previous victim and last Friday's, were quick-thinking and snapped a pic of the perv with their cellphones.

Our last victim clearly takes no shit and was so irate at the flasher, she blogged about the experience. My favorite quote?

"I took out my camera phone and snapped some pictures. He tried to cover his face with his Archie book and his hands but he couldn't keep that up. After I was sure I had him, I yelled, "'Sir, your penis is out!'"



Haven't We All Known This For Some Time Now?

It's official. Tonight, on Letterman, Britney Spears is going to announce that she is, indeed, preggers. According to transcripts, the admission/announcement will go down like this:

After Spears read the show's Top Ten list, Letterman asked, ``So, we've established now that you are in fact pregnant, is that right?''Spears answered: ``Yes, sir'' confirming media reports and ending much speculation.

"Don't worry, Dave, it's not yours,'' Spears told the comedian in a taping of his CBS show airing Tuesday night.Letterman responded, ``Oh. Well, I think that's good news for both of us."

I love Dave.

It's Not TV...It's HBO

I spied this little gem on www.mediabistro today: "HBO Developing Comedy About Journos in Iraq (TV Week) Several cable networks have contemplated dramatic projects set against the war in Iraq, but only HBO is daring enough to consider a comedy. The premium network is developing Hotel Palestine, a half-hour comedy about a group of wartime journalists living in a Baghdad hotel. "

If anyone can do it, HBO can. Keep your eyes and ears peeled, dear readers...


Favorite new "New Rule" by Bill Maher

New Rule: If you want to live the American dream, move to Europe. According to a new study, climbing up the economic ladder in this country is much harder than in just about every other wealthy nation. If you're born poor here, you pretty much stay that way. And fat-cat catering Republicans get poor people to vote for them because they get them to vote their dreams, not their self-interests. That's why lots of people of modest means are all for getting rid of the estate tax, a tax which affects one percent of us, the richest one percent of us. You know, the ones with estates.

Does Anyone Really Care?

Tonight, David Blaine will attempt to emerge from the fishtank he's been living in the past few days by holding his breath for 9 minutes or the length of time it will take to unwrap the 150 lbs of chain links he'll be mummified in...all on live TV.

Anyone else care if he succeeds?

I'm sick of this guy. His stunts, while original, always border on creepy or just inane. You want to stand on a pole like a vulture overlooking Bryant Park? So be it. You feel the need to lock yourself into a glass coffin for a week? Sure, no problem. Encasing yourself in ice for few days? God bless you for entertaining the tourists in Times Square. But, seriously David, why must you innodate me with your peeling skin and catheter bag during my morning coffee/news fix?

www.1010wins reports that many people, in fact, do care about this 'magician': "All day long, curious onlookers lined up to walk past the sphere. Linda Brady of the Bronx brought along a boom box and loudly played Jennifer Lopez's ``My Love is All I Have.'' Blaine appeared to respond by bopping to the beat.

``I just love him,'' said Brady. ``He has a creative mind just like me, and he's crazy just like me.''

You can say that again, Linda.

Thankfully, our little goldfish will free himself tonight and we'll be rid of him until the next scheduled freakshow (likely to, again, be during sweeps weeks for ABC).

People Collect The Darndest Things

Only in Georgia, kids...Janie Peel doesn't collect little ceramic cats, ex-husbands or garden gnomes. No, this southern belle keeps her eyes peeled (pun intended) for vintage outhouses.

According to the AP report, "her favorite is an ancient two-holer with a tin roof and crude cedar posts for corners. The rusted metal on one side is peppered with shotgun pellets - just where the occupants would have been sitting. Peel isn't sure whether the circular pattern of tiny holes is the result of vandalism, assault or perhaps someone's innovative idea to improve ventilation.

'It has a lot of character,' she said. 'You have to wonder about the conversations that might have taken place in there.'"

Um, yeah...that's exactly what I was thinking.

It's an OUTHOUSE, Ms Peel. Conversations aren't exactly what these structures were utilized for.

Currently, Peel has three in her backyard and room for about a dozen more. At least guests never have to wait in line to use the ladies' room at backyard BBQs.


Look both ways before you cross...

I saw this bit of news on www.gawker.com first. With the blurb on www.1010wins, I knew it to be true.

James Gandolfini, better known as Tony Soprano, was idly cruising around on his moped in lower Manhattan, when he was mowed down by a taxi yesterday. Innocent bystanders went to see if the anonymous middle aged burly guy was OK when they realized who it was. At this point, they did what any self respecting NYer would do - they whipped out their cell phones. Not to call 911, but to take a picture.

Ever the tough guy, Gandolfini calmly hailed a cab to the hospital (not to worry, he's fine). The Italian scooter will need a bit of work, but should be ready to put our hell's angel back in the slow lane again soon.


RIP Cingular

Because I was desperately in love the the Razr phone, I finally switched my old AT&T Wireless plan over to Cingular this Winter. It cost me nearly $200 to do so and I had to sign a 2-year contract for a monthly bill that also increased.

Did I mention that AT&T migrated all it's customers to Cingular service nearly a year before? I was receiving Cingular bills and paying Cingular my hard earned money anyway. Still, I had to 'officially' switch over and pay the activation and migration fees. I considered it the same as using a broker to find a new apartment. Sure it sucks to lay out the month or so of rent as a payment for exactly 5 minutes of work on the broker's part. But, if you want the new digs, you have to go through the source.

Imagine my shock to read on www.adage.com today that AT&T is now going to ABOLISH the Cingular brand in 2007 and revert back to AT&T Wireless. To quote AdAge:

"It cost $4 billion to turn it into one of the best known names in the country, a future-forward, dynamic brand with a strong connection to young consumers and a share lead in the wireless marketplace. Yet, in 2007, Cingular will be tossed aside like an old sock."

So help me God, if they ask me to pay some BS migration fee to revert back to AT&T Wireless, I'll switch over to Verizon before you can say Can You Hear Me Now!


Is This Really Necessary?

I've been pondering this since reading (on www.cnn.com of all places), that Hollywood is going to remake Revenge Of The Nerds. True, this movie series was a guilty pleasure throughout my adolescence, but does Generation Millennium really need a remake of Booger and Co? Revenge was no Animal House, nor was it Old School.

If they've gotta do it, lets just hope, dear readers, that they get the casting right. Here's Z. Madison's picks for the key Tri-Lams:

Louis Skolnick:

Clearly, this needs to be ... Freddie Prinze Jr.

Gilbert Lowell:

The only guy who could do Anthony Edwards' justice would be... Tobey McGwire

Dudley 'Booger' Dawson:

Without a doubt: Johnny Knoxville

Arnold Poindexter:

Napoleon Dynamite himself, John Heder, was born for this role


Happy Birthday, Empire State!

Once again, one of our most iconic buildings is back in the news.

The Empire State Building turns 75 today!

The light show tonight will be a special one, the building's representatives have teased. So keep your eyes peeled towards mid-town, dear readers...

FYI - the famous photo above is construction workers having lunch on a crossbeam during the construction of the Birthday Building.