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Edited by Jessica Lustig

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Double Times
An AP shot of a victorious Dubya made the Times front page on December 13, after the Supreme Court tossed him the victory -- and on November 8, under the headline bush appears to defeat gore. "It ran in only 110,000 copies" the first time, says a spokeswoman. "Considering our 1.1 million circulation, it had little exposure." Moreover, "we still felt it was the best available upbeat photo of Bush."

Bad! Bad Parent!
Tour season at the city's elite private preschools just ended, and it's comforting to hear that not all parents are obsessing about their darlings' Harvard potential. A few expressions of concern, recently overheard: "Does this school use blocks in the classroom? My son doesn't do blocks." * "I don't think an Asian kid who was adopted by a white couple represents diversity in the classroom." * "Did you notice that one of your students pictured in the promotional material is flipping the bird?"

Dot-com Hell
When the Starrett-Lehigh building on Eleventh Avenue was sold in 1998, out went printing and storage tenants (brutally; one broker called the owner "expert in how to make a tenant's life unhappy" in the Times) and in came techs like Network Plus and Screaming Media. "When all of this was tinged with the idea of a boundless future, all these decrepit spaces and run-down bathrooms felt adventurous," says one dot-commer. "Now it's like, ugh." Owner rep Rob Kurtz claims that "actual dot-com tenancy is less than 5 percent." So there's no contingency plan to lure the printers back? "I don't think so."

And a Crappy New Year
Oliviero Toscani's new Cacas: The Encyclopedia of Poo, a compendium of excreta, seems museum-bookshop-friendly, with its lush photographs of, for example, elephant dung (page 113). But the Brooklyn Museum of Art isn't carrying it. "We sent a copy to their buyer," reports Pam Sommers of Taschen Books. "But they said they weren't going to be able to take it for the holidays."

Tel Avoid
Since the State Department gave Israel the same travel advisory Angola and Bosnia have, the number of people flying in from New York has fallen 70 percent. So Councilman Noach Dear and his travel-agent pals recently announced that, despite the televised carnage, Israel is safe to visit. The Feds were . . . diplomatic. "We don't issue travel warnings lightly, and we think this warning accordingly represents the situation," says a Consular Affairs spokesman.

A Fetching Scent
Oh My Dog! is the first "unispecies" fragrance meant to be shared by dogs and their owners. "In Tokyo, the club kids have made it their cult fragrance. In Paris, it's secretly adored by socialites," says co-inventor Laurent Jugeau, formerly of Givenchy. But in New York, at Saks, "it is apparently being discovered by gay men."

Video-Game Violence
At the Software Etc. store in Herald Square, the staff warned two customers toting a new PlayStation 2 that a woman was recently mugged for hers. "Take a cab -- not the subway," they advised, adding that they should ditch the ps2-emblazoned blue bag. But a Midtown South press officer was reassuring: "I haven't heard anything about a rash of PlayStation 2 robberies on subways, if that's what you're asking. I don't think there's any reason to be worried."


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