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Brett Ratner

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Taxi TV: The Celebrities Weigh In

We canvass the stars at last night's 'Cry-Baby' premiere to see whether anyone will defend the honor of cabbie cable.

Ramona the Pest

Is Real Housewife Ramona Singer the "most hated woman in New York"? Which famous-for-being-rich couple had to borrow cash to pay for their wedding license? And what other screen star may have had an affair with JFK? All this and more in today's roundup of the best of the gossip pages.

We're Forced to Get on Our Knees at Hilfiger

Because it took us 45 minutes to get to Lincoln Center in rush-hour traffic, we might have been a little late for Tommy Hilfiger. And because we might have been a little late for Tommy Hilfiger, we might have missed the chance to sit in our actual assigned seats. This may be how we ended up loitering in a glass-enclosed balcony, fighting for a spot past the folks in standing room who'd gotten there at a reasonable hour. And that's how we found ourselves at our lowest Fashion Week point, both emotionally and physically: kneeling on the carpet, peering through people's legs down at the front row below.

School Principal Single-handedly Stops Ratner Drillers

City Tech Tower
Bruce Ratner has plans to build Brooklyn's tallest structure using air rights from CUNY's NYC Technical College. The City Tech tower, to be designed by Renzo Piano, is being built with the collaboration of the school — and in return, they'll get a new class and lab building, built by Ratner. But there's one loser in this deal: George Westinghouse High School, which uses an auditorium and parking lot on the CUNY site where Ratner will be building. School officials only received a fax with the announcement a couple of days before a crew arrived to start work for excavation. "The principal asked the workers to leave the property, and they did," a community activist explained later. The school has rented the space from CUNY for years, and administrators have tried since September to learn what will happen to it. "They had one sit-down with construction people that ended poorly," says the activist. The school's PTA will meet with representatives of both Ratner and the Department of Education on January 19 (which would seem to make them more influential than dozens of celebrity protesters against Ratner's other Brooklyn projects, who can't seem to get a meeting with him). Ratner spokesman Lorin Reigelhaupt promises to restore lost parking spaces on-site or nearby, but neither Reigelhaupt nor the DOE will comment on the future of the auditorium. —Alec Appelbaum

Padma Leaves a Bad Taste in Fiamma's Mouth

Manhattan Moms, an East Coast equivalent of Bravo's The Real Housewives of Orange County, will premiere early next year. A lot of the city's foremost graffiti artists congregated for a book party at Auto in the meatpacking district. Billy Joel is in talks with the Mets to perform a bunch of gigs at Shea Stadium. George Steinbrenner will have a high school named after him in Tampa. Padma Lakshmi was rude to the staff at Soho eatery Fiamma, but Martha Stewart overtipped and was nice. CNN gave out an award to someone for forcing "one of the world's largest oil corporations to pay more than $6 billion to clean up toxic waste in the Amazon rain forest," but didn't name Chevron as the company because they are an advertiser.

Linda Stein's Funeral Reveals Fondness, Anger

Linda Stein
Hundreds turned out at the Riverside Memorial Chapel on the Upper West Side this afternoon for the funeral of murdered real-estate icon Linda Stein. Fellow brokers, longtime friends, and even celebrities like Trudie Styler and Brett Ratner showed up to pay their respects. There were so many attendees, the chapel had to open another room for overflow, though many chose to stand in the main chapel. While the funeral was in parts a celebration, Stein's daughter, Samantha, didn't let the gruesomeness of her death go unmentioned. She said the family would not rest until "the bastard" responsible for her death is found and justice is served. As friends voiced fond and complex remembrances, someone recounted one of Stein's favorite quotes, which captured her aggressive outlook on life. It was Rosalind Russell's famous line from Auntie Mame: "Life is a banquet, and most poor suckers are starving to death." —S. Jhoanna Robledo

Ew, Lance Armstrong Is Hooking Up with Ashley Olsen?

Lance Armstrong
Lance Armstrong and Ashley Olsen hooked up at Rose Bar and then left at 2 a.m. The Jewish Theater of New York claims that the Times won't review its plays because the paper is anti-Semitic; the Times says it won't review its plays because they are bad. Kim Cattrall actually showed up to work before the other SATC cast mates for once. AOL chairman and CEO Randy Falco was roasted by Bob Costas and Brian Williams, among others. Ivana Trump made a kind of funny joke about Harper's Bazaar editor Glenda Bailey being the devil in Prada at Denise Rich's Angel Ball. (Diddy also left the ball with model May Anderson.) Michael Jackson went to Brooklyn to shoot a cover for Ebony magazine and was sweet despite prattling on about how much he likes kids.