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Hayden Harnett

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Clay Aiken vs. ‘Newsweek’ Reporter: A Catfight?

Clay Aiken Angry
Every journalist who has to talk to celebrities at some point has to deal with attacks. A star will tire of the reporter's probing questions and will suddenly lash out. There are a few traditional means of doing this. First, and most common, is the "Why did you decide to do this for your job? There are hundreds of people dying in Iraq and you are asking me about my sex tape?" approach. Then, sometimes, there's the "I'm calling my publicist and none of her other clients will work with you if this is how you operate," tactic (otherwise known as "I'M TELLING MOM!"). And finally, there's the "I thought you were better than this!" routine, which celebrities always think will work, but never does, because, hello, we're reporters and you can't appeal to our sense of shame because we don’t have one. This last mode was the one taken by Clay Aiken when Newsweek sent cute boy reporter Ramin Setoodeh to interview him about debuting in Spamalot this week, and to ask him about the whole incident with Kelly Ripa last year. (You remember, when she snapped at Aiken for putting his hand over her mouth, by saying, "I don't know where that hand has been," and then Rosie went bananas about it on The View and called Ripa a homophobe?) The minute Setoodeh brought it up, things went very downhill very fast:
What about the Kelly Ripa thing? I'm not going to discuss it. Did you think it was homophobic? I'm not going to discuss it. What do you want to talk about? I think we're done.

Getting Emotional

It Happened
A resurgent Hillary Clinton wasn't the only one who felt like having a good cry last week. Barack Obama, whose momentum washed out prior to the New Hampshire primary, decamped for a $700,000 midtown fund-raiser at the Grand Hyatt; Richard Gere and Iman looked on as Obama plotted his counterthrust against the Clinton machine, vowing angrily to "take it to them just like they take it to us." Rudy Giuliani barely nosed out lovably loony libertarian Ron Paul in the Granite State for fourth place but insisted that he only has eyes for Florida, anyway.

Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews Are Frenemies

Like most people Keith Olbermann has ever worked with, Chris Matthews has felt the sting of his MSNBC colleague Keith Olbermann's acid tongue. “Maybe this [box] contains Chris Matthews’s eyebrows,” Olbermann said to New York last year. “You see them last night? Did he borrow them from Joe Pesci?” But it must have really hurt his feelings! Because Olbermann's Countdown is doing really well in ratings, and instead of being happy for him, Matthews is pissed. "Keith runs MSNBC," a senior executive at the network tells Men's Journal in their February issue. "It's been an amazing turnaround, because two years ago they were going to cancel him. Because of his success, he's in charge. Chris Matthews is infuriated by it." Olbermann Talks Office Politics, Other Politics [TVNewser/Mediabistro] Related: Limbaugh for Lefties [NYM]

Treat Mom to an Apartment Near Stuyvesant Square

Sunday is Mother's Day, which means restaurants teeming with brunching families and, yes, fewer open houses. But if a new home is on your gift list, what better way to spend the day than being on the hunt? (Anyway, who needs another brooch or — shudder — lotion set?) These apartments are all within walking distance of historic Stuyvesant Square Park on 15th Street near Rutherford Place, a patch of green that's fenced, like Gramercy Park due north, only you don't need that infernally hard-to-get key to gain entry. The area, named after Peter Stuyvesant, has stellar schools (private and public) and an easygoing flair that recalls the Village pre-fancification. Lately, though, it has seen its profile rise alongside that of nearby Union Square and the East Village. Still, Stuyvesant Square retains a glimmer of its underappreciated and, consequently, still neighborhood-y vibe. Some would say the real estate's still affordable, too, though it's far from cheap. But then again, maybe you should decide for yourself. After the jump, a list of open houses scheduled for Sunday, mothers be darned. —S. Jhoanna Robledo

Vulture Goes Tony

Tony Award
Vulture, our culturally inclined sister-blog, may be young, but it's got strong opinions. Today, it enters the fraught field of award prognostication: the editors have made their inaugural Tony picks (in the musical categories) ahead of the actual nominations, which will be announced May 15. The editors' spider-sense is dictating a Grey Gardens-Spring Awakening showdown for Best Musical, and a wholly surprise-free Best Revival category; click over to see who else, in their educated opinion, will make the cut. Tony Predictions: Song-and-Dance Division [Vulture]

Park Slope Send Arab School to Boerum Hill

Boerum Hill: The proposed Arabic language and culture school so infuriated Park Slopers that the city decided to put it in Boerum Hill. [The Brooklyn Paper] Brooklyn Heights: Last chance to buy tickets for the Brooklyn Heights House Tour tomorrow. [Brownstoner] Chelsea: Someone's looking for information on what a building on the north side of Seventh Avenue between 23 and 24th Streets looked like in the sixties and seventies. [Blog Chelsea] Park Slope: The Brooklyn Blogfest was last night, giving bloggers an opportunity to see daylight, and each other. [Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn] Williamsburg: After months of wondering, the new rendering of 184 Kent Street causes a significant "whoa." [Curbed]