Before I get to the winners and losers of the week, I'd be remiss in not reporting on my time on West 67th (or is it 66th?) Street with the Ladies of The View, where I appeared live on Wednesday to show clips from Bravo's Outrageous and Contagious Viral Videos.
I will cut to the chase: Star and Joy had a massive fight before the show and Joy inadvertently gave Elizabeth a black eye when she tried to intercede...and THAT'S why Elizabeth wasn't in the first segment of "Hot Topics." See -- she was gettin' that eye touched up! Oh, and Joy wears a wig. Oh, and of course none of that is true.
I had a great time at the show and there is precious little to report. I was in makeup (the ladies all share one big makeup room which is probably a very smart way to maintain parity) and spied some hair on a wigstand and asked my makeup lady if it was Star's. It unfortunately wasn't. That's about as dishy as it didn't get.
In the green room during the show, I sat with fellow guests Carnie Wilson and her entourage of three, Angela Bassett with her entourage of five (I think), and my entourage, Bonita from Bravo. The conversation centered on Carnie's recent experience taping "Celebrity Fit Club 7" (or 3 or 4). As I listened to the convo, I checked in with myself. "How am I feeling?" I wondered. "Good," I thought. "I am feeling calm and good."
On air it was "hot topics" time and Star was telling Joy that she and Al went through an exhaustive search for the right implant size for her and that that involved a lot of touching but that she wasn't going to say anything else about it because then the tabloids would start on it and her.
I returned to my me-check-in. "Was I nervous?" I asked myself. "No," I thought. "I am fine and, in fact, I am cool as a cucumber." "If you are cool as a cucumber," I asked myself, "Then why are your teeth chattering you bozo?" It was true, my teeth were actually lightly, softly chattering. I focused completely on Carnie. I took a deep breath, meditating on the struggle that this brave fellow-View guest had endured. I took a sip of hot coffee to warm me up, thinking of Carnie and lightly humming "Hold On." I, like many before and many to come, used Carnie to get a freakin' grip on myself. And the chattering teeth were gone.
During the commercial break before the segment, I was led onto the stage where the ladies were in various activities. Elizabeth read her notes for the segment, Meredith talked to audience members, Joy futzed, and Star and Angela Basset looked like they were starting a movement in the corner. I sat in my stool waiting, singing along to Donna Summer's "Bad Girls," which was booming over the PA. They slowly took their places as we came closer to air.
Joy was next to me and we began talking about her experience on "Celebrity Poker" and she told Star and Elizabeth that they should come on the show. Meredith, who I'd re-met the night before at a book party, appeared with a warm kiss on my cheek, and then spent a few seconds getting her lipstick off my face. Oh Meredith -- you are a "for real" superstar lady and whatever you sell I am gonna come buying. Charge me card, please.
The segment happened, it was fun, the ladies were enthused, I was enthused, and when Bonita and I walked out of that studio complex on the sunshiney day looking blindly for our car which was parked directly in front of our eyes, fate brought me smack into a TV legend.
For standing in front of that ABC Studio Center on West 67th Street (or 66th maybe) was none other than the man who brings Pine Valley Superstud Lawyer Jackson Montgomery to life every day on All My Children: Mr. Walt Willey. This is the man who can say, "Erica, I'm gonna have to sue you... for a million kisses" and make it sound kind of maybe like somebody's idea of poetry! And then a week later he can say "Brooke, I'm gonna have to sue you...for a million kisses" and make THAT kind of sound like somebody's idea of poetry!
I did not bother Mr. Willey, who stood tall, tanned, and imposing. He was so living his "feeling on top of it all on the Wednesday of Daytime Emmy Week" moment, smoking what whiffed to me like a menthol classic, that I wanted him to have his moment as I had mine. And I did.
Now onto the winners and losers of the week in pop culture:
MICK JAGGER: You'd think he'd be a loser for appearing in a pilot for a prospective ABC sitcom, but the WAY he's doing it is what makes him a winner. He is eternally cool and above the fray, and that's how he's being portrayed in the show. In the series -- which follows a group of amateur cons trying to rob Jagger's apartment -- he plays himself, will only appear in a handful of episodes, and will shoot his scenes on location. There will be no confusing this show with a three camera sitcom, or Jagger with Tony Danza.
NEIL YOUNG: Today he releases "Let's Impeach the President" online. In the post-9/11 age of protest-song-backlash, artists are discouraged from speaking out against the government, lynched themselves for speaking up instead of any provoking any kind of honest debate about what they're actually saying. So whether you agree with Young or not, at least he's got guts and something to say. Although you knew Jessica Simpson's "These Boots are Made for Walkin'" remake was a pro-Hillary battle cry, didn't you?
JAN MAXWELL: Alec Baldwin's onstage co-star quit the show this week because the actress says Baldwin made her life hell. She got out of a bad situation for her, doesn't have to deal with someone she hates, got the "sweet revenge" moment of telling the world how much she can't stand Alec Baldwin, and was paid out of her contract to boot.
MAURY'S PRODUCER: Povich has had a bad week (what with a lawsuit by former co-workers featuring allegations of a wild and reckless workplace and an extramarital affair between MP and a producer) so he's gotta be a loser too. But, what did these producer expect when signing up to work at a three-ring circus? Lunches at the National Press Club?
PARIS: Ms. Hilton has an imposter in the form of a lookalike former stripper from Scores who's running around NYC getting into clubs pretending to be the REAL stripping Hilton, and promptly getting herself banned from those clubs when they realize she's the fake stripper. It's a real mess for Pare because this is snowballing the already-in-process Paris-backlash. The clubs she's not already banned from for being her, are making her persona non grata for being someone else even before she steps in the door! Get it? It's kind of one big existential "theory" really, but I feel this backlash taking form on the streets in a real down and dirty way so I think this imposter is having an effect.
Now, does anybody know a Jessica Simpson imposter?