Baltimore filmmaker John Waters has made Florida's hit list. This week an Orange County grand jury ruled his '70s cult comedy "Pink Flamingos" obscene and indicted a video store owner on obscenity charges for renting the movie to a 14-year-old girl.
Waters's trash classic (which is unrated) features the late, overweight Divine eating dog excrement. Repulsive? That's the point, Waters says. But obscene?
"Isn't that ridiculous?" Waters told the Orlando Sentinel. "Nothing surprises me from Florida these days. I don't want to go near Florida. You electrocute people at an alarming rate. You ban rap records. What's the matter with that state? ... They have the absolute right not to like my movies. It's as American as the right to show them... . All this does for me is make my lecture fee go up."
High Price of Hitler's Paintings
A federal judge in Houston has set at $6.8 million the value of an art cache seized by the U.S. Army in 1945 in Germany that includes four watercolors painted by a young Adolf Hitler and photographic archives of prewar Europe and Nazi Germany.
The latest findings open the way for Billy F. Price, a Houston businessman and collector of Hitler's work, to seek monetary damages based on the income he has not received since the government seized the paintings, said Larry A. Campagna, one of Price's attorneys.
In his finding, the judge said the value of the paintings lay in the fact they were painted by Hitler rather than by "an obscure early 20th-century German watercolor artist."
Hitler's watercolors portray street scenes and landscapes painted before and during World War I. The photographs include depictions of Rudolf Hess with his family and Mickey Mouse painted on a Nazi aircraft. Used Shoes, $10,000
One pair of shoes more or less may not mean much to Imelda Marcos, but they were worth $10,000 to an unidentified bidder at a charity auction held recently near Oklahoma City. A pair of black suede pumps from the Marcos collection, which once numbered more than 1,000 pairs, was sold at an auction for children's medical research, the attorney for Marcos's codefendant in her racketeering and fraud trial said Thursday.
The idea to sell the shoes originated with James Linn, chief attorney for the codefendant, Saudi Arabian financier Adnan Khashoggi. Linn is founder and chairman of the annual campaign to raise money for research at Children's Medical Research of Oklahoma City.
"Everybody has heard about Mrs. Marcos's shoes," said Linn, who lives in Oklahoma City. "She was gracious enough to include a letter attesting to their authenticity."
Marcos's footwear made world headlines when she fled the Philippines in 1986 with her husband, the newly deposed president Ferdinand Marcos, who died last year. A Crown for the Queen Mum
The British Royal Mint will strike the first gold crown in six decades when it issues a proof crown to mark the 90th birthday of Queen Mother Elizabeth, which is Aug. 4.
The coin will be struck in both 22-karat gold and pure silver. Designed by Leslie Durbin, the crowns bear the Rafael Maklouf portrait of the Queen Mother's daughter, Queen Elizabeth II. On the reverse is an elaborate interwoven "E" monogram topped by a crown, a thistle and a rose to mark the Queen Mother's Scottish ancestry. Hospital Report
Karl Menninger, one of the founders of Topeka, Kan.'s Menninger Clinic, which helped shape modern psychiatric practice, is battling stomach cancer, said a clinic spokeswoman yesterday, who added that he was listed in fair condition. The 96-year-old psychiatrist, who rarely missed a day of work during his career at the clinic, was admitted to a Topeka hospital June 12.
Although no longer involved in the day-to-day operations of the clinic, he has continued to write about psychiatry and meet with students and staff.
The clinic was founded in 1925 by Charles Menninger and his sons, Karl and Will.