"IT IS strange to be so known so universally and yet to be so lonely," said Albert Einstein.
• ON DECEMBER 7, the London-based auction house, Knaisz, will offer up fifty pieces of memorabilia that once belonged to Michael Jackson.
Among the items are the famous white cotton glove, covered in Swarovski crystals, which Michael wore when performing "Billie Jean"...a fedora he also wore in concert and Jackson's famous "moonwalking" shoes. The latter footwear alone is expected to pull in at least $50,000.
What might go even higher are several drawings made by Michael himself. This is Knaisz's very first auction, and they sure are beginning with a bang. The president and CEO of the auction house says, "We feel great respect for Michael Jackson because he is the most important figure in the history of pop music...we would like to allow fans to take home a piece of their idol." If you want to know more about this event log on firstname.lastname@example.org
My only question is--what is the Jackson family getting out of this? I can't believe these items slipped through their hands.
Thanksgiving week I was chided for writing about this all-American holiday and leaving Christianity out of it. I suppose now, if I congratulate Radio City Music Hall's Christmas show this year, with its ending of the Baby Jesus, etc. I'll get some hell about that!
Well, I bow to no one in my veneration for Christmas and as much as I love the Rockettes of Radio City Music Hall and love Santa gliding down from the North Pole, acrobatic ice skaters and all the rest of the glamour, fun and fantasy at Radio City this time of year, I defend the right for the show to end with the manger, the camels, lambs and donkeys, the three wise men bearing gifts and all the rest.
I am not a fanatic like Sarah Palin and Bill O'Reilly who are defending Christianity in their books. And I think nowadays we have a Pope in the Vatican who is perfectly capable of defending Christianity in a human way.
But I don't like saying "Happy Holidays" when I actually mean "Merry Christmas"...though, to each his own. And a decent balance for those who believe and think otherwise, wanting others to say "Allah is great" or "Happy Hanukah."
I just adored the Radio City show this year and especially the "snow" they poured down on the audience at the end. It is still falling out of my shoes. I have loved and defended this annual event, once upon a time even hopping up when I had the power to help keep the Rockettes in place. I have never missed the Radio City show since I first came to New York after World War II.
One of my favorite things in life is/are the singularly amazing Rockettes and their march of the wooden soldiers. What would Christmas be if we had never had that experience? Boom! Goes the cannon as they fall linking arms, in a sight only they can offer up.
I'd say if you have money for only one spectacular annually, be sure to take your children and loved ones to 50th and Avenue of the Americas. It's worth giving up something else to go and see this show.
A bright and delightful and over-powering spectacle of glamour and old-fashioned sheer show biz that will cheer you up with its latter day modernizing which can't break the thing we dream of as children. Linda Haberman is the genius who reminds us every year of what Christmas is all about. It runs through December30th and you should call 866 858-0007... or radiocitychristmas.com and see what you can afford to pay for this incomparable experience.
• One of my favorite treats on television is the "Top Gear" shows done on the BBC and when all else fails, I go back and watch their racing, their silliness, their comparisons, their successes and failures. (For instance, can one drive through the Swiss alps faster than one can fly!) As an example, this popular British series is mindless and competitive and pointless!
They often have huge name guests who come on after the competitions and talk to the "big three"stars who good-naturedly compete on this outing. I haven't the foggiest what their names are, but they know everything about machines, engines, internal combustion and how to fix things that go wrong with machines. My favorite was the night they invited the great Dame Helen Mirren to come on at the end of the show and discuss her concepts of the invention of the combustion engine.
I saw a "Top Gear" episode recently in which the protagonists compared Renault and Lamborghini and some others and I had an idea. Why doesn't "Top Gear" invite the Pope to be on their show? He drives an antique Renault and he'd be a great guest.
• One of Manhattan's most loved and the oldest continuous family-owned restaurant in the city - Barbetta - suffered a kitchen fire over the last few days and is out of commission. This beautiful, rare, theater-district eatery on West 46th street ("Restaurant Row") has always been a favorite of the gods. It has the most beautiful garden attached in all of New York.
Owner Laura Maioglio, as reported this week by Cindy Adams, is at sixes and sevens about what exactly happened and how she can fix it? This disaster has happened to the restaurant at the very time of year that business is at its peak. We'll keep you posted.
And we wish the mighty Laura all the best.