Names & Faces: Jenna (Bush) Hager, DJ Am, Jon Gosselin

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Monday, August 31, 2009

Jenna Hager, Reporter?

The bar-hopping and boozing are a distant memory: Jenna Hager, nee Bush, is headed to NBC's "Today" show, AP reports. The 27-year-old former first daughter will contribute education stories to the popular morning program about once a month while continuing to work in Baltimore as a schoolteacher.

"I hope to focus on what I'm passionate about . . . education, urban education, women and children's issues, and literacy," Hager said. Don't expect her to dish on her days at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. "I don't think it's that interesting," she said.

After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin in 2004 -- where she racked up two underage drinking citations -- Hager taught at Elsie Whitlow Stokes Charter School in Columbia Heights. She is the author of two books -- "Ana's Story," about an HIV-positive single mother, and "Read All About It," a children's book written with her mother, former first lady Laura Bush. She married Henry Hager in 2008.

Brockovich's Former Firm Is Bankrupt

Masry & Vitotoe, the California personal injury law firm that Erin Brockovich helped to win a $333 million water contamination lawsuit, has filed for Chapter 11, the Wall Street Journal reports. It seems that everybody wants a bigger piece of the largest toxic tort settlement ever. The firm says it's spending too much battling claims of former litigants and the estate of Edward Masry, who died in 2005.

"This drain of money and staff resources has threatened [our] cash flow and focus, consequently making it more difficult to pay for ongoing litigation expenses," the firm said in a motion. A spokesperson expected "speedy" resolution.

Albert Finney portrayed Masry in Steven Soderbergh's 2000 Brockovich biopic. Julia Roberts won an Oscar for her portrayal of the former legal clerk, who now runs an environmental consulting firm.

EBay Bid for Crypt Fails

According to NPR, a widely reported eBay bid for the crypt above Marilyn Monroe's at Westwood Village Memorial Park in Los Angeles has fallen through. Turns out an unidentified Japanese man just couldn't afford to get on top of Norma Jean Baker for all eternity.

"I need to cancel this because of the paying problem," the bidder said in an e-mail. He had agreed to pay $4.6 million for the spot.

The coveted resting place has a long history: Richard Poncher purchased the crypt from Joe DiMaggio when the Yankee Clipper divorced Monroe in 1954. Monroe died in 1962. When Poncher died in 1986, he asked to be placed face down above the body that graced Playboy magazine's first cover. But Elsie Poncher, his widow, has put the crypt on the auction block to pay her mortgage. Now that the $4.6 million bid is a no-go, eBay will investigate the credentials of a dozen other contenders.

It's unlikely that Playboy magnate Hugh Hefner will be among the bidders. He already owns the crypt next to Monroe's.

End Notes

DJ Autopsy Inconclusive: An autopsy of disc jockey/Blink 182 entourage member DJ AM, a.k.a. Adam Goldstein, has proven inconclusive, AP reports. Though a crack pipe and prescription medication were found in the 36-year-old's Manhattan apartment, law enforcement officials will await the result of toxicology tests -- expected to take weeks -- before ruling on a cause of death.

A Partying Papa: Fresh from getting his octobrood safely off to the first day of school in Pennsylvania last week, "Jon & Kate Plus 8" reality star Jon Gosselin hosted a pool party Saturday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, People reports. Gosselin, who's working with Ed Hardy designer Christian Audigier on a new clothing line, is in Sin City for a fashion convention. The recently single superdad drank champagne, scored phone numbers and endured the taunts of one bikini-clad critic, who shouted "Team Kate!" as he strolled the red carpet.

-- Justin Moyer, from staff, wire and Web reports

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