What Does Not Kill CNBC Makes It StrongerIt’s hard to pick just one beautiful moment from today’s rollickingly emotional story about CNBC’s success, despite, or perhaps because of, the introduction of Rupert Murdoch’s rival Fox Business Network. But pick one we did.
in other news
Spitzer’s Mind Reading ‘Reading Spitzer’s Mind’Hey, look, a novelty column in the Daily News, written as if the columnist were inside my head. Michael Goodwin’s the author. Don’t like the look on him. He’s probably 80 by now. These things always come with a photo of the author from 30 years ago. I’ve seen Mort Zuckerman in real life. Please.
I see what he’s going for there. “Reporters write vicious lies about me, then parrot them to the gullible public and ask what they think. The polls just say what the reporters want them to say.” Well, yeah. Except I wouldn’t have phrased it like this. I actually know things about polling methodology and rating bias and the 95 percent confidence level and the like. I went to Princeton and Harvard. This banner ad — can I make it stop moving?
in other news
Al Gore Sets His Sights on NYC, a Milk ShakeAl Gore’s Generation Investment Management, the London-based securities firm he runs with former Goldman vet David Blood, is moving its American headquarters up from Washington D.C. to the Bank of America Tower at One Bryant Park. “It’s just a decision that we’ve taken lately that the very best place for us to be positioned for our clients and our business is New York City,” Peter Knight, the company’s president of American operations, tells the Observer. The building is sustainable — it expects to receive certification from the US Green Building Council when it opens in May — making it a natural for the firm, which combines securities analysis with research into issues like climate change. But we have to admit we’re a little worried about one thing: Is it going to be good for Gore to be so close to the tempting yet calorific delights of the ‘Wichcraft creamery?
Al Gore Moving Into Douglas Durst’s One Bryant Park [NYO]
in other news
Ellen Pompeo Weds at City Hall, Cheers Up Knicks FansGrey’s Anatomy star Ellen Pompeo got married, shotgunNew York style! The smoky actress secretly tied the knot with her longtime beau Chris Ivery in City Hall on Friday. Despite the fact that both of their hometowns are in the Boston area, the pair opted for a simple ceremony witnessed by Mayor Bloomberg himself. “They are over the moon,” Pompeo’s spokeswoman, Jennifer Allen, told the Boston Globe. Last month Pompeo told People that she hadn’t started planning, despite the fact that she’d been engaged to Ivery for over a year, so this may have been a spur-of-the-moment thing. While they were here, the newlyweds snagged courtside seats at Sunday’s Knicks game. How cute! At least there was one functional relationship down there that fans could root for.
‘Grey’s’ Pompeo quietly ties knot in Big Apple [Boston Globe]
‘Gossip Girl’ Plotline: Real-Life Crossover?Great news! Last night we went to the opening of Radio City Music Hall’s Christmas Spectacular (and it was, as you can probably tell from the name, splendid). There were a bunch of exciting celebrity appearances, including Cynthia Nixon with her girlfriend and children, and Chris Meloni, who arrived late and actually had to slide his glorious bubble butt past us to reach where his kids were sitting. But the most Christmas-miraculous sighting of all was of Taylor Momsen and Connor Paolo, who you might know better as Jenny Humphrey and Eric van der Woodsen from Gossip Girl! They were sitting in the front row, right up next to all the action. Now, we don’t know if it was a date, but the two seemed very close and sat leaning on one another and whispering for the whole show. And the best part? They were chaperoned by Taylor’s mom. (She even brought Taylor’s younger sister along for the ride.) The actors are, after all, only 14 and 17. If they were real teenagers, instead of famous ones, they’d totally have to go to the mall as the only way to get away from their parents, and be forced to make out at Cinnabon. Oh, to be young
Earlier: ‘Gossip Girl’ Star Connor Paolo Has Lunch at 10:30 A.M. All our Gossip Girl recaps and dish!
in other news
Judith Regan: Still Got It!By now everyone in the world knows that Judith Regan, the ex-publisher who almost brought you O.J.’s If I Did It, is suing her former bosses at HarperCollins; it’s all a part of her professed desire to make her life “smaller, not bigger.” (Also part of the spotlight-reducing plan: recording a cover of “My Way,” writing about it in Harper’s Bazaar, and sending an mp3 of it to Gawker.) But it turns out the lawsuit might have implications beyond the publishing beehive. At issue is Regan’s much-documented affair with Bernie Kerik, infamously conducted atop the Shroud of Turin in an apartment near ground zero reserved for first responders.
in other news
Bonnie Fuller: She’s Just Like Us! Except, You Know, NotBonnie Fuller, Star magazine editor, author of The Joys of Much Too Much: Go for the Big Life — The Great Career, The Perfect Guy, and Everything Else You’ve Ever Wanted, and mother of four, offers a disturbing glimpse into her brain today on the Huffington Post. Turns out it really is just a dusty swirl of celebrities, body issues and ego! Bonnie has been moved by the plight of Britney Spears, she says, but not quite in the way that you might think. She finds Britney’s poor parenting skills kind of comforting. Quoth the Fuller:
It’s not that I and women like me don’t care about the plight of little Sean Preston and Jayden James. We do. Obsessively so. And we’re relieved that the unlikely dad of the year, K-Fed, has primary custody. Nevertheless, every time that our girl Brit cluelessly tries to whitestrip her toddler’s teeth instead of brushing them or runs a red light with the court-appointed monitor and her two sons all strapped in her car, working moms across the continent can set back our own personal guilt-meters about our mothering skills.
Really, Bonnie? You and “women like you” feel this way? Okay then, mothers of America, please raise your hand if you see celebrity mothers as “guilt-evaporators”; if it has ever once occurred to you to “pat yourself on the back” for not being as bad a mom as Britney Spears. Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?
Oops! Brit Did It Again! (Made Moms Feel Awesome, That Is) [HuffPo]
We’ll Make It, I Swear … to the Governor’s Mansion?Jon Bon Jovi lives in Soho but is keeping a house in Jersey because he may run for governor there one day. Alec Baldwin is worried that Hillary Clinton won’t vote “no” on a $10 billion farm bill that subsidizes farmers who provide fattening foods to schools. Kelly Ripa claims she treats her butt like her breasts by buying really tight jeans and pushing her cheeks together. Cindy Adams claims that Time Warner may be looking to sell People magazine and In Style to Hachette. A stylist for Frederic Fekkai had to wear rubber gloves before shampooing a tweaked-out, sweaty Brandon Davis. High-end TV network Plum TV laid off a bunch of people and may be closing. Makeup maven Olivia Chantecaille has a new banker boyfriend. Liz Hurley and Hugh Grant are still buddies and attended a dinner party at the Upper East Side townhouse of Valentino.
early and often
Spitzer Grumpily Drops License PlanEliot Spitzer said last night, in his cranky-principled fashion, that today he will announce his intention to drop all plans to grant licenses to illegal immigrants. In an interview with the Times, the governor cited the massive opposition to the plan, which has snowballed since he first announced the idea in September and which has lately been affecting not only his favorability ratings, but also Hillary Clinton’s, after the senator was asked about it in a debate and was, well, not un-positive, saying that although the plan made “a lot of sense” she did not specifically support it. Spitzer said that it was not these things that stopped him from proceeding, but that he expected the plan would ultimately be blocked by clerks or the DMV. “I am not willing to fight to the bitter end on something that will not ultimately be implemented,” he told the Times
In the interview, the governor sounded disappointed but resigned. He acknowledged that he would be criticized for changing course on the issue for the second time in three weeks. (“You think so?” he said facetiously when a reporter suggested as much.)
Aw. That’s our Spitz, always gracious with the defeat.
Spitzer Dropping His Driver’s License Plan [NYT]
the sports section
Marbury Stephs on All Our DreamsA day after Stephon Marbury fled Phoenix after a major blowout with Knicks coach Isiah Thomas, and two days after the Daily News came out with a report that the point guard’s future with the team is in doubt, everybody is still clutching for information. ESPN.com has started a “Marbury Watch,” which is of course what any Website should do on such an occasion, and the Times called the whole thing “a startling sign of how badly his once-promising career has eroded.” The News asked, “When does Thomas officially get put on notice? Why should Thomas, after all he’s done to build nothing more than a mediocre team for years to come, be allowed to make what would be another radical, franchise-changing move?” And the Post, of course, put Marbury’s face on a milk carton and called him a “Basket Case.” But nearly everybody, including us, is obsessed with what Marbury shrieked to his team after hearing he wouldn’t start anymore: “Isiah has to start me,” he reportedly ranted. “I’ve got so much [stuff] on Isiah and he knows it. He thinks he can [get] me. But I’ll [get] him first. You have no idea what I know.” First of all, it’s awesome how they translate Marbury’s swears for us, as though we wouldn’t understand what he meant if they said “s—, f—, f—.” And second, OH YES.
Stephon Marbury threatens to dish info about Isiah Thomas [NYDN]
Traveling Marbury [NYP]
Unhappy Marbury Leaves Knicks Trip [ESPN]
Marbury Leaves Knicks In Dispute [NYT]
in other news
André Balazs: Selling Hotels Is Standard ProcedureEver since yesterday’s little Gawker item about André Balazs selling three of his signature hotel properties (it turned out that it came from a Crain’s story), we’ve been wondering what’s up. Is our favorite hotelier and celebrity dater hard up for cash? Are delays and extra costs on his High Line–spanning Standard Hotel becoming a burden? Apparently not, according to Balazs himself. The Observer got him on the phone to talk about the transfers. “Quite frankly, we’re a little surprised about Crain’s much ado about nothing,” Balazs said. “It was financing. You know, we recently refinanced a bunch of the other properties and restructured them to take advantage of the capital markets. And these are all now stabilized properties that it’s just an opportune time to refinance them, meaning that they’ve been open long enough, and they’re steady and mature hotels.” So everything’s okay? “It’s a routine recapitalizing and restructuring [of] the underlying debt or equity. We do it all the time. We control the management and control the properties.” Hm. We liked it better when all we had to think about was whether we liked his pretty lobbies.
Andre Balazs Explains Hotel Moves: ‘We Do It All the Time’ [NYO]
Hotelier selling assets in refinancing move [Crain’s NY]