- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 23, 2010

Meat’s fate

“One of the obvious problems with a dress made entirely out of meat is that its perishable. So, after Lady Gaga premiered her fleshy outfit at last weeks MTV Video Music Awards, fans had to wonder: What would become of the famous meaty fashion after the show? No, it wasnt grilled up and served with a case of red wine. ‘The dress will go through a process where it becomes a sort of jerky,’ the designer, Franc Fernandez, tells E! Online.

“But before you start salivating, be apprised that the jerky will not be available for tastings. It will be ‘archived’ for posterity, Fernandez says, telling MTV Style that he bought 50 pounds of meat and designed the dress over three days, refrigerating it in between sessions. Over time, the metamorphosis into jerky is natural, he adds. … And hes not planning on designing another one. ‘Theres not going to be meat dresses in the future,’ he says. ‘This was made for a specific purpose. Its what it is.’ “

- Tim Nudd, writing on “Lady Gagas Meat Dress Turning Into Beef Jerky” on Sept. 23 at People

Win-win

“For those of you hoping to see another Joaquin Phoenix meltdown on ‘The Late Show with David Letterman,’ last night was probably very disappointing. There was no beard, no mumbling - well, some mumbling; hes still Joaquin Phoenix - and very little controversy. …

Letterman wasnt cruel to Phoenix - something that would have been all too easy for him to do - but he wasnt especially nice either. In typical Letterman fashion, he started the interview with praise (‘Ive always liked you’), before letting the uncomfortable star twist in the wind by seeming utterly disinterested with what Phoenix had to say (‘All I care about is me in this’). Whether or not Letterman was involved with the hoax has been fodder for discussion of late, but it should be noted that he got Phoenix to admit nothing was planned prior to the interview. If Letterman did know anything, thats probably because hes not an idiot. …

“If the goal of Phoenixs ‘Late Show’ appearance was to prove to Hollywood that the star is back to being an employable actor, mission accomplished. Phoenix was charming, contrite, self-deprecating and humble, laughing along with the audience while Letterman got a good amount of body blows. He also looked good; gone was the hobo beard and beer gut. The Joaquin Phoenix who was seated on ‘The Late Show’ couch last night looked like a leading man, so expect casting announcements to follow. Clint Eastwood, youre on the clock.”

- Christopher Rosen, writing on “The Winners & Losers from David Lettermans Latest Interview with Joaquin Phoenix,” on Sept. 23 at Movieline

‘Come a long way’

“In what Cinderella would surely consider unprincely behavior, a man won last years’ Disney Princess Half Marathon. It may be a marathon intended ‘for a princess earning her glass running slippers or a woman who runs her kingdom already,’ but princes are also allowed, grudgingly. As the Wall Street Journal explains in a piece about the growing visibility of men in women’s races, ‘technically allowing guys to run avoids legal spats, pleases charity sponsors whose fund-raisers are often male and engenders a magnanimous spirit.’ Well, sometimes it engenders magnanimity - other times it just provokes glares, heckling or the silent treatment as men beat women in their own race.

“Marathon organizers are also doing their part to ‘discourage male interest,’ says the Journal: ‘Goodie bags often contain feminine-cut T-shirts, along with swag like perfume samples, chocolates and pink sandals. One race is giving away feather boas and tiaras.’ Occasionally, more desperate measures are taken: In Run Like a Diva’s half marathon next month, medals will be presented by shirtless firemen. ‘We had four men signed up, but two dropped out when they heard about the firemen,’ says Robert Pozo, the race organizer.”

- Tracy Clark-Flory, writing on “Men edge into women’s marathons,” on Sept. 21 at the Salon blog Broadsheet

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