Gene Simmons, Mouthing Off
Gene Simmons perhaps should have held that seven-inch tongue of his when he went on a tirade against Islam during a radio interview in Australia this week.
"This is a vile culture," the 54-year-old bassist for Kiss told Melbourne's 3AW radio. "And if you think for a second that it's willing to just live in the sands of God's armpit, you've got another thing coming. They want to come and live right where you live and they think that you're evil."
Then Simmons, who was born in Israel, moved on to their treatment of women: "You can send your dog to school to learn tricks -- sit, beg, do all that stuff. None of the women have that advantage."
As one can imagine, this didn't go over too well with the Muslims in Australia, who flooded the station with outraged calls.
"Mixing the entertainment world with the political and religious world is a minefield," said Yasser Soliman, chairman of Victoria state's Islamic Council. "I think it would be good for overseas speakers and commentators to be given some sort of advice in regards to our vilification laws here. They leave and go back to where they arrived from, but they leave behind a big mess that we have to live with."
Simmons was unavailable for comment, a representative for his Australian tour said yesterday.
Danish Prince Weds
It's like a page ripped straight out of a fairy tale: Danish Crown Prince Frederik yesterday wed his commoner Australian bride, Mary Donaldson, in a lavish ceremony in Copenhagen.
Danes and Aussies alike celebrated the union, lining the streets in Denmark and watching the ceremony in Australian pubs. The heir to the Danish throne wept as he watched his bride walk down the aisle.
The popular prince met his bride at a Sydney bar during the 2000 Olympics. As in so many fairy tales, she did not know he was a royal.
"She is good for Frederik and good for the people," said Annie Jensen, a Dane who took the day off to watch the spectacle. "She will represent Denmark and sell us abroad, working for us just like Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik."
Noted . . .
And baby makes three. Former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer and wife Becki are now the proud parents of their first child, Sarah Elizabeth Fleischer, born Thursday night. We hear everyone in the family is doing very well . . . After six months of dating bliss, Dallas Cowboys safety Roy Williams proposed to Destiny's Child singer Kelly Rowland on Monday in New York. (She said yes.) The 23-year-old Pro Bowl-playing, Grammy-toting lovebirds have not set a date. Hmm, wonder if Tina Knowles -- the band's stylist, who just announced plans for her own fashion label with daughter Beyonce -- will design the wedding dress?
. . . and Quoted
"Not very entertaining, clever, or original."
-- An internal NBC research memo detailing why staffers gave the 1994 pilot of "Friends" a failing grade.
-- Compiled by Anne Schroeder from staff and wire reports