Like Marc Rich Will Ever Come Back to New York
When you're getting slapped around in the press as much as Marc Rich is, you're grateful for the few defenders you have left. A budding 15-year-old journalist named Jordana Zizmor discovered that recently when Rich sent her a personal note from his Swiss hideaway, thanking her for a kind opinion piece she'd written about him in the teen section of The Jewish Week. "What bothers me," wrote the Ramaz School soph, who happens to be the daughter of rainbow-haloed dermatologist Dr. Jonathan Zizmor, "is the rush to kick this guy after he has already been kicked to the ground. This is simply not the Jewish way." In a note delivered to Zizmor at school, Rich told his youthful empathizer, "I liked very much what and how you wrote." But if you're waiting for the presidentially pardoned financier to come home, the last line of the missive would indicate that you shouldn't hold your breath. "He said he'd be glad to meet me if I was ever in Switzerland," reports Zizmor. "My mom said I should go, but I don't know. Like, I'm ever going to go to Switzerland."
Kid Rock Eats a Slice of Humble Pie
Though he appeared at girlfriend Sheryl Crow's surprise performance at the Cutting Room last weekend, Kid Rock had some humiliation to endure and lots of kissing-up to do before the evening was through. Just days before, the stringy metalhead had been photographed at the Chambers hotel in a far too cozy pose with chesty rock groupie Pamela Anderson, and was rumored to have disappeared with her into a room during the party. So when Crow called her pal Gwyneth Paltrow onstage, the throaty singer smiled, looked at Rock in his front-row seat, and said, "Here's to small-breasted women." Next, the rock-rapper climbed onstage wearing a giant bunny outfit and sang "If I Were President," ad-libbing the line, "My First Lady would surely be Miss Sheryl Crow." The songstress, who at this point was sitting with Sex and the City star Chris Noth, the club's co-owner, turned to the actor and said, "He used my name in his song -- he's redeemed." Just so long as Kid isn't spotted with Carmen Electra anytime soon.
I Love Your Yacht Just the Way It Is
If you want to know who Billy Joel is dating -- and who doesn't? -- just check out his yacht. Originally called The Redhead, the boat was reportedly named in homage to former girlfriend and carrot-top Carolyn Beegan and is rumored to have been renamed The Islander at the insistence of Beegan's blonde and apparently jealous successor, Trish Bergin. But now that their relationship has simmered down, the schizophrenic boat has reverted back to its original moniker (though there's no word on whether Beegan's back in the picture). The Piano Man's rep claims the changes have nothing to do with his blonde phase, explaining that "everyone knew his boat was named The Redhead, so when he moved up-island from the Hamptons last year" -- selling his home to Jerry Seinfeld for $32 million -- "he wanted to change the name to The Islander to retain some privacy." Unfortunately, according to the rep, Joel made The Islander change unofficially, and "there's so much paperwork involved in renaming a boat, and it's so expensive, that he just decided to keep the original name after all." We understand -- it's hard to afford those kinds of fees on a rock-star salary.
The Opposite of Kathie Lee
The expat daughter of former senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan will once again make her presence known in New York. Maura Moynihan -- who's divided her time between the Indian subcontinent and the U.S. over the past 28 years -- is launching a clothing line here. When we ran into the quirky 43-year-old at the Caron Foundation's tribute to MTV honcho Tom Freston last week, Moynihan told us that she was in town meeting with boutiques to sell her Choli (rhymes with "holy") line of Indian-esque womenswear. Choli, Moynihan explained, is the Sanskrit word for the blouse worn with a sari. The line consists of one-of-a-kind jackets, dresses, shawls, and shirts cut from antique silk and cotton saris. Having spent the past ten years working with Tibetan refugees in India and Nepal, Moynihan as businesswoman assured us she hasn't lost her liberal touch. "My tailors were making $20 a month, and I raised them to $50," she said, "which is huge for them." Moynihan is also organizing a cooperative in which all of her craftsmen will own a piece of the company. As for her dad, Moynihan says, "He's loving life as an academic and a teacher." Just like Bubba.
The Ongoing Search for Bad Booze
Shocked diners and revelers at Eugene were subjected to a real-life Law & Order experience recently when what seemed like half the 13th Precinct descended on the cavernous hot spot -- where Madonna, Ashley Judd, and Rod Stewart have recently frolicked -- in a search for indecency. Palms sweated as nearly 50 agents from the NYPD's Narcotics and Vice Enforcement divisions and the State Liquor Authority swept through the joint during peak partying hours, sending patrons fleeing. While the men in uniform examined bottles with flashlights and ran tests to see if the liquor was watered down, the D.J. began playing a song by The Police over the sound system. "I'm glad he has a sense of humor," cracked a waiter. (You'll be pleased to know that the bar's liquor was pure, and that no drugs were found.) A participating officer helpfully informed us that the unexpected visit was actually part of a long process that begins with the deployment of narcs and underage decoys and ends with the total onslaught we were witnessing. Oh, he added that this is strictly routine. "There are 21 clubs in this precinct," said the cop, "and Eugene is just one of the ones we're going to tonight." Now that fellow 13th Precinct partyer Peter Gatien has thrown in the towel, we suppose they've got to keep busy somehow.
Madonna and Ricky: They've Got Mail
The familiar voice of America Online will be a lot more familiar in the next month. The Internet monolith has rounded up twelve celebrities to record the famous "You've got mail" along with "Welcome" and "Good-bye." Starting April 30, a new voice will be offered three times a week, with Web surfers guessing the speakers' identities for a chance to win prizes like a trip to the 2001 Blockbuster Awards or one of three Mazda Miata roadsters. While AOL would provide us with only the most obscure hints as to whom they've bagged for the campaign, we can safely assure you that they include Madonna, Ricky Martin, Rob Lowe, and the gals of Destiny's Child. A company rep would not confirm or deny our uncanny forecasts, but that's nothing new.
A Window Into Celebrity Souls
Once again, celebs endeavor to prove they have other talents. The Hugo Boss store opening today at Fifth Avenue and 56th Street features window displays designed by such hot commodities as Laurence Fishburne, Will Smith, and Julianna Margulies (pictured). And when you give an actor free rein, anything is possible. Going for her vision of "old Hollywood," Margulies designed her display based on the 1985 film epic Out of Africa. Fishburne, in a philosophical mood, took images from the Jedi training sequence in The Empire Strikes Back, being a firm believer in Yoda's heady teaching, "Do or do not. There is no 'try.' " For his part, Smith seems to be following the Hollywood maxim "For thine own self promote" by filling his window with shots of Muhammad Ali, whom he's playing in an upcoming bio-pic. LL Cool J is taking the opportunity to promote literacy with stacks of books filling his space, but a few of his CDs managed to sneak in as well. The Nets' Stephon Marbury, meanwhile, pays homage to his hometown of Brooklyn with a Coney Island scene. Thanks for keepin' it real, Stephon.
Talk About Fake Breasts . . .
If you recognize the cover girl for this year's Maxim Hot 100, you're probably a lot younger than we are. The simmering brunette staring out from newsstands come May will be none other than Dr. Aki Ross, the alien-slaying, computer-generated star of this summer's apocalyptic thriller Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within. Artists from Columbia Pictures, Maxim, and Square Pictures teamed up to transform Aki from the flick's animated (and fully clothed) wasteland warrior into the seemingly flesh-and-blood swimsuit model gracing the mag's annual supplement, which rates 100 up-and-coming hotties. Editor-in-chief Keith Blanchard says of his latest cover girl, "It's very unlikely she'll do anything embarrassing while we're still on press, but we're crossing our fingers her early nudes don't start surfacing on the Web." Aki, by the way, came in eighty-seventh on the list, while Dark Angel's Jessica Alba scored first place. Our regrets to the thirteen lovely ladies who were beaten by a cartoon.
Maddening Journey at Supersonic Speed
Steve Madden may be in for a bumpy ride. According to a source close to the trendy cobbler, Madden is in a blossoming romance with hat designer and gal-about-town Ivy Supersonic. So far, the pair have paraded through such places-to-be-seen as Lotus and the Mercer Kitchen. "He seems to be pretty into her," a friend of Madden's tells us. "He likes her craziness, her outgoingness . . . her hats." The comely Supersonic certainly is outgoing. When we called her for comment, we were treated to an answering-machine greeting made from messages left by none other than Tommy Lee and Snoop Dogg. Our call was returned by Supersonic's manager, Heidi Minx, who told us that Supersonic and Madden are merely in talks to design a rock-and-roll-style shoe together. "Ivy doesn't date people she works with," says Minx. "Ivy's working 24/7." And we all know how much work you can get done at Lotus . . .
Additional reporting by Aric Chen and Seth A. Gladstone.
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