Patti LaBelle, Up in Washington and Down in Florida
What's up with Patti LaBelle ? On Friday she strutted her bad self across the stage here at the Larry King Cardiac Foundation benefit. On Saturday she broke into tears in South Florida during what she called the worst performance of her career.
LaBelle was the closing act at King's $1.5 million benefit, following singer Vanessa Williams and comedian Wayne Brady, and spent 30 minutes onstage, singing and chatting about life as menopausal diva. "This is what 61 looks like," she bragged to those assembled, including Quincy Jones, Redskins Coach Joe Gibbs and Dem fundraiser-songwriter Denise Rich.
The next night in Riviera Beach, LaBelle went on outdoors after midnight; the air had cooled and the star struggled through her 45-minute act, mentioned her diabetes and heart murmur, then started to cry. "I've never been this embarrassed in my life," she said. "It's the worst show I've ever done in my life.''
LaBelle's reps had no comment yesterday.
DeLay's Defense Strategy
Tom DeLay wants his gun back!
Texas officials have suspended the former House majority leader's license to carry a concealed weapon, according to Fort Bend County court documents first revealed over the weekend by Brazosriver.com, a Web site based in his home county.
Under Texas law, anyone indicted on felony charges is prohibited from packing a pistol, and DeLay was hit with campaign money-laundering charges in October. He got a hearing on the suspension, but Judge Jim Richard on Jan. 26 upheld the order by the Texas Department of Public Safety. Last month, DeLay's Austin attorney Steve Brittain filed notice seeking an appeal. Of course he'll get his license back if the criminal charges are dropped or he's acquitted.
What's he need that handgun for? DeLay's press office promised a response that never came; Brittain did not return our call.
Meatloaf, Cookies, Presidential Suite . . .
Days after snagging a copy of Vice President Cheney's hotel room requirements, The Smoking Gun yesterday published John Kerry's request list from his 2004 presidential campaign. The senator nixed tomato-based foods and celery ("JK hates celery") while requesting cold cereal, meatloaf, chicken, cookies, Poland Spring bottled water and a recumbent bike for workouts.
Kerry spokesman David Wade was unembarrassed: "Dick Cheney drinks Perrier and refuses to watch anything but Fox News. John Kerry hates Evian, eats meatloaf, and snacks on chocolate chip cookies. If these documents had been leaked during the campaign we'd have won in a landslide."
Here's Your Supreme Court Opinion!
No, Antonin Scalia did not flip anyone off this weekend. The Boston Herald reported he made an "obscene gesture" in response to a reporter's question. But a Supreme Court spokeswoman told the Associated Press that the justice simply used a dismissive hand-flick-off-the-chin when he was asked Sunday about criticism of his Roman Catholic beliefs. "You know what I say to those people?" Scalia said, according to the Herald, and made the gesture. "That's Sicilian." Basta , folks.
Stringer Bell, Without the Chalk Outline
|Idris Elba didn't fetch nearly as much as his fictional character Stringer Bell.(Larry Riley - HBO)|
Oh, and he's not Baltimorean -- he's British! How did he get the accent? "I work as an actor, and that is what we have to do," he said, though it all came out "actah" and " 'aff to do." Elba, soon to be seen with Hilary Swank in supernatural thriller "The Reaping," said he's recognized all the time by Stringer fans. "The big question is" -- and here he switched into that flawless accent -- "Why'd they kill ya, dawg?"