In a week when the temperature hit 100, the numbers didn’t always add up. The 1, 2, and 3 lines were shut down from 9:16 to 10:59 one morning, stranding nine-to-fivers. Out of 145 Long Island Rail Road trains, 69 ran late. It took Mayor Bloomberg four days to visit western Queens, where 2,000 households were still sweltering without power at the end of last week. Only one unoccupied swimming pool was to be found, aboard the Crown Princess, but only because it emptied out when the cruise ship tilted fifteen degrees to one side. Forty-seven-year-old Peter Cook’s 19-year-old former lover spilled the beans about the $50-an-hour job he’d arranged for her, and nineties one-hit wonder Samantha Cole reemerged at Mach 1 speed to confess that ten years ago she too had slept with him at age 19. A new study detailed how Bruce Ratner’s rail-yard stadium complex—the price of which jumped from $2.5 billion to $4.2 billion, and which is looking less like a 21st-century Rockefeller Center than a Brooklyn Brasília 2.0—would result in gridlock. (Ratner offered his own fifteen-point plan in response, including embedding all 18,000 Nets tickets with MetroCard strips.) Hillary Clinton announced that she’d raised $5.2 million in the second quarter (including $300 from Mr. 755, home-run king Hank Aaron) and breakfasted with 20th Century Fox kingpin Rupert Murdoch, who surely had his mind on 2008. (The week’s other odd contribution: $1,000 to Eliot Spitzer from Fab Four hairstylist Vidal Sassoon.) The second-place Yankees closed in on the Red Sox; unlucky No. 13 A-Rod hogged headlines by catching ten minutes’ worth of rays in Central Park and dropping three balls the same night. President Bush (a.k.a. “43”) zipped in and out of the G8 summit and pulled off an Ugly American trifecta for the week: placing two unwanted hands on German chancellor Angela Merkel’s shoulders, eighty-sixing the stem-cell bill with his very first veto and using a four-letter word to describe the crisis in Lebanon. With the situation heading for Def Con 2, a Hezbollah spokesman seemed ready to dole out high fives: “If America wants to invite World War III,” he said, “we welcome it.”
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