By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
What obnoxious co-star of a hit cable series is so attention-starved he asked publicists to let him walk the red carpet twice at a big media event last year? What TV personality thought she'd get the solo star buildup and became furious when she learned she didn't, a situation that's made her bristle with rage and insecurity? What aged diva says of a hit sitcom she once did, "[Co-star # 1] was a doll, [co-star # 2] was heaven, and [co-star #3] was a cunt"? What all-around entertainer, once branded homophobic, turns out to have had an affair with a black male antiques dealer?
What actor who still won't say he's "that way" once, swears a source, played piano for a gay men's chorus? What Latin singera flaming queen, as it werelit so many incense candles at the St. Regis recently that he set off the fire alarms? What eternally boyish TV guy won't talk to gay magazines because he's afraid it'll taint his on-air interaction with celebrities? (Yeah, they might respect him more.) What other tube staple is Miss Sticky Fingers when it comes to food on the set? (The highly paid wench has been seen literally wheeling turkeys out of the green room.) What long-running r&b diva cuts ahead of check-in lines at airports by shamelessly rolling in aboard a wheelchair?
What insufferable reality show personality landed his current business thanks to a sugar daddy (though it's hard to fathom anyone actually paying for his sexual services)? What TV show that favors women was so out of it, they had to be coerced to book the female film success story of the year? Who, say spies, was secretly glad to learn that Republican was re-elected, though she can never publicly admit it? What female superstar likes to do it with really dirty bad boys, practically of the death row variety? Which acting titan, say the whispers, likes to make a cocky on people, though he does so, sanitarily enough, with a glass table between them (though bear in mind this tidbit gets assigned to a different actor about every three years)?
What chic presence encourages male and female employees to participate in company orgies, with herself as the glam centerpiece? What star who's flaunted that weird hubby is supposedly trying to find a way out of the unholy alliance? What married actor, whom everyone thinks is gay, had a torrid affair years ago with that foreign screen hunk? What omnipresent shots of that leading man courting that superstar were so staged they even asked around for seven outfits the actor could wear in different setups?
What youngish actor, when he was at the frenzied peak of popularity, would tell available girls that they first had to screw his male frienda very generous act toward the friend, if not the girls? What lesbian funny lady once dated that omnisexual singer? Who plays a gay, but says he isn't so in real life (and no, it isn't the Will & Grace guy), though he went out with that male indie star for about six months, which would make him, duh, gay?
Which model turned all-around personality is rumored to be a sapphic sister, but in reality she likes black men? Who, when asked by a newspaper to submit a photo of himself at age five, specified that they must lighten his skin and taper his nose and lips in the photo? Whose relative called that drug rehab place to book her for an appointment, but the scheduled meeting was promptly canceled by the unlucky lady? What magazine editor is talked about by underlings as "an evil genius"? Is it true about the weatherman and that baseball player?
Where are the cutest, scruffiest East Village gay males going on Fridays lately? (Opaline's dandy "Area 10009" parties.) Name some other interesting nightspots, bitch. (OK. The Flamingo Room is the El Flamingo folks' new offshoot, which looks as if the Trading Spaces crew reworked a diner into a Waldorf annex, and the Majestic Hotel's Ava Lounge is an angular tribute to '50s siren Ava Gardner, though the staff strangely calls it the "Ah-va Lounge.") Are we really supposed to believe that Britney Spearswent out with Justin Timberlake, then cheated on him with that choreographer, Wade Robson? Please! And did Herb Ritts really die of "pneumonia" or isn't that just code for you know? (I don't know, but The Advocate will quote Ritts's flack saying the photographer was HIV-positive, but died of a different kind of pneumonia.) Finally, which most-gabbed-about person of the year is the lucky subject of two of the above items?
Furthermore, where did the smart set (and I) go for New Year's Eve? South Beachand I paid! An aesthetic paradise, SoBe is still bitched out by residents as having become soulless and mainstream, which might be exactly why my sick ass likes it so much. An oasis of pure hedonism with very little "real world" action filtering in, the place is so hype-friendly that everywhere you go, they promise Puffy's coming, but you stay anyway. Everything new is God again to the point where, as one restaurant's publicist chirped that two *NSync-ers were on the way, I was the only one who noticed poor, old Jordan from New Kids on the Block sauntering in!
Over at Barton G., owner-showman Barton G. Weiss threw a lavish "Dance of the Naked Chefs" lunch consisting of a giant martini glass filled with raw seafood followed by a massive "mixed mini meat grill" right out of The Flintstones. Over dessert, four male strippers danced out in chef's aprons, which they promptly dropped, revealing huge maxi meat platters that they gleefully used for utensils. One guy stirred an ice cream bucket with his schlong and served the dessert to my friend, while another rolled a maraschino cherry around in his foreskin, then rammed it into my mouth as I gagged, terrified of the red dye number two. But from now on I'll never be satisfied with a mere cherry without a dick attached!
More reservedly, Bal Harbour's the place to go to gawk at the label ladies, while Lincoln Road Mall is where you push past the tourists to nab a table at Touch or Sushi Samba (a poppy place right out of a Romero Britto painting, with two kitchens and a live DJ). Another Gotham-to-SoBe spin-off, Cafeteria, is opening right across the street, and I hear a recent session where local celebs were photographed for the menu turned into the biggest press-whore orgy since the glory days of Donato Dalrymple.
After your third (and best) Chilean sea bass of the dayat the tastefully named The Hotel's indoor/outdoor Wish restaurantyou thump-thump at Crobar's gay Sunday, though it was on a recent straight night that Tara Reid bobbed out of there, oblivious to the fact that one boob was hanging out. Ishould talk; by this point, a hustler had joined my entourage, flashing his dick at whim and fleecing strangers for money in between explaining the knife wound on his forehead. (But at least he didn't wield a maraschino.)
On New Year's Eve, Susanne Bartch's poolside bash at the Raleigh (which Andre Balasz just bought) had stilt walkers and trampoline boys prancing about a giant blowup dinosaur, which didn't only look phallic to the drunk. Several minutes after midnight, Bartsch emerged on a balcony, encrusted in balloons, and kookily counted down to the New Year. "Make a vish," she said. I vanna go back.