For Court TV's Guthrie, A Change of Venue

By Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts
Wednesday, May 10, 2006

What does it say about our nation's capital that Court TV has opened a bureau here? Savannah Guthrie knows what you're thinking: "Obviously there are a lot of court cases involving D.C. political figures," said the cable channel's new Washington correspondent (i.e. Scooter Libby and Jack Abramoff , and the investigations of Reps. William Jefferson and Cynthia McKinney . . .)

"That isn't the reason," insisted Guthrie, who's actually been more busy with the Zacarias Moussaoui trial and the Sam Alito confirmation hearings since she moved from NYC. "But obviously, it doesn't hurt."

The 34-year-old Georgetown Law grad, who did time here with WRC-TV and the law firm of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, has a bit of an It Girl vibe going these days. Court TV put her picture on the invitation to the bureau's D.C. launch party on the Kennedy Center roof last week, and according to her bio, she was a top 10 finalist in the 2002 John Lennon Songwriting Contest -- forgot to ask what that's about, so eager were we to get to the juicy stuff, namely . . . she met her fiance when they both covered the Michael Jackson child-molestation trial!

He's Mark Orchard , a correspondent for the BBC. They've bought a condo near the U Street corridor and will wed in her hometown of Tucson in November.

"What do you say -- 'We were at the Michael Jackson trial, love was in the air'?" Guthrie laughed. "The BBC's live shot was right next to ours. We met the first week of trial, ended up spending a lot of time together, because that's something Michael Jackson reporters had a lot of" in sleepy Santa Maria, Calif.

Love, Etc.

Britney Spears shares a laugh with host David Letterman
Britney Spears spills the beans on Letterman: She's preggers.(Jeffrey Neira - CBS via AP)
· Expecting : Britney Spears made a surprise appearance on the "Late Show With David Letterman " last night to announce in somewhat rambling style that -- just as the tabloids and celeb mags have speculated for months -- she is indeed pregnant again. "Don't worry, Dave, it's not yours," the 24-year-old pop starlet quipped, according to a transcript released by "Late Show" reps. "Oh. Well, I think that's good news for both of us," replied the host. Her publicist confirmed the news. Spears and her dancer-turned-aspiring-rapper husband Kevin Federline welcomed their first child, Sean Preston , in September.

· Engaged : Lobbyist Jack Quinn and writer Susanna Monroney, proving once again that love transcends party lines. The former counsel to Bill Clinton and Al Gore and Democratic half of Quinn Gillespie popped the question to the Republican Monroney (her granddad the late senator Mike Monroney was a Dem from Oklahoma, but she worked for Reaganites Ed Meese and David McIntosh ). "I was the black sheep of the family for 10 years, so it's nice to be welcomed back to the dinner table," Monroney says. This will be the second marriage for both.

This Just In . . .

Conflicting reports continue to swirl about the condition of Keith Richards, following his fall from a palm tree in Fiji. The New Zealand Herald reported in today's edition that the 62-year-old Rolling Stones guitarist had a second surgery on Monday to remove blood clots from his brain -- after an earlier one to stop the bleeding -- and that doctors fear he may have suffered brain damage. But Stones publicists quickly denied the report. "The first and only operation was done on Monday, May 8, and was 100 percent successful," their statement said. "There was no brain damage. He continues to improve as expected."

Hey Isn't That . . . ?

· Gilbert Arenas, starting his off-season with lunch Monday at the Hard Rock Cafe. The Wizards MVP posed for pictures and signed autographs for fans.

· Rachael Ray, in slimming all-black, at Zaytinya restaurant Saturday night. The Food Network cook, in town for a segment of "Tasty Travels," sat at a corner table by the fireplace in the main dining room and (say it isn't so!) spent plenty of time yakking on her cellphone between bites of cucumber yogurt dip, spanakopita, mante (meat-filled pasta) and shrimp with dill.

· And a special Across the Pond sighting: A zaftig Monica Lewinsky , unrecognized (except by two sharp-eyed Washington lawyers) last week in the audience at London's Canal Cafe Theatre, where the former White House intern took in a performance of "NewsRevue," a political comedy show. But tour guides are following her progress: When a double-decker bus passed the London School of Economics, the guide announced that Lewinsky was studying there and had done quite well. on her "orals." Exams, people!

© 2006 The Washington Post Company