- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 25, 2006

I’m sorry,’ Cook says

Christie Brinkley’s estranged husband has been silent about recent reports that he had an affair with a teenage employee while married to the supermodel.

Now his apology is receiving a very public airing.

“This is an aberration,” Peter Cook, 47, said through a lawyer, according to Cindy Adams’ column in yesterday’s New York Post. “I’m sorry. I’m contrite. I’m stupid. Foolish. No excuse.”

Miss Adams wrote that Mr. Cook’s words were provided to her by his attorney, Norman Sheresky.

“I love my wife. … For a lifetime I’ve tried to prove how much I love her,” Mr. Cook told Miss Adams.

Elliot Mintz, Miss Brinkley’s publicist, told Associated Press that he didn’t believe she would issue a response.

Mr. Sheresky said Mr. Cook, the model’s fourth husband, is hoping for a reconciliation with Miss Brinkley, 52. He defended his client as a “man who loves his wife and who loves his children.”

The couple, who were married in 1996, have an 8-year-old daughter, Sailor. Mr. Cook adopted Miss Brinkley’s son, Jack, now 11, from her marriage to Richard Taubman.

The couple’s separation exploded in scandal earlier this month when Diana Bianchi, now 19, claimed Mr. Cook had seduced her shortly after hiring her to work at his architecture firm. Her lawyer, Joseph Tacopina, described the relationship as consensual but claimed that Mr. Cook’s role as employer and his gifts of a car, money and jewelry could constitute sexual harassment.

According to the New York Post, Mr. Sheresky said Mr. Cook would respect Miss Brinkley’s wishes, whatever the result.

“He hopes there’s no divorce. If she wants one, and he certainly hopes this doesn’t happen, but if — it will not be nasty,” Mr. Sheresky told the newspaper. “She can have whatever she wants.”

Shaw’s eighth gets half

A jury has awarded the ex-wife of the late jazz clarinetist and bandleader Artie Shaw $1.42 million, which accounts for about half of his estate, AP reports.

Evelyn Keyes, 89, the last of Mr. Shaw’s eight wives, was best known for playing Scarlett O’Hara’s sister in the 1939 film “Gone With the Wind.”

Mr. Shaw died in 2004 at age 94. He and Miss Keyes were married from 1957 to 1985 but separated in 1970. Long after they separated but while they were still married, Mr. Shaw wrote a two-page contract in which they promised each other half of their estates, said Miss Keyes’ attorney, Henry Gradstein.

“She went to his executor to collect her half, and he refused,” Mr. Gradstein said. “She had no choice but to sue.”

Mr. Shaw’s hit recordings of “Begin the Beguine” and “Star Dust,” among others, made him a major star in the big-band era. Besides Miss Keyes, he also was married to actresses Lana Turner and Ava Gardner.

An attorney for executor A. Edward Ezor did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment.

Careless whispers

George Michael and his American lover, Kenny Goss , have called off their “wedding” after the pop star was discovered having an illicit encounter with a stranger in a London park, the Evening Standard reports.

The couple had been looking forward to an Elton John-style “wedding” ceremony followed by a lavish party to mark their 10th anniversary. However, plans for the nuptials reportedly were halted after the singer was seen emerging from the bushes last weekend after a sexual encounter with Norman Kirtland, 58, a potbellied, jobless former van driver. Police say they have no plans to investigate because no complaint has been made and the incident was not witnessed by an officer.

Mr. Michael, 43, admitted he was homosexual in 1998 after California police arrested him for lewd conduct in a public restroom. He later poked fun at the incident in his song “Outside.”

A job for K-Fed

Britney Spears’ hubby has a new gig.

Kevin Federline will close the Teen Choice Awards, performing his single “Lose Control” for the first time on network television, Associated Press reports. The show airs Aug. 20 on Fox.

Mr. Federline, 28, nicknamed K-Fed, is expected to release his debut hip-hop album, “Playing With Fire,” in August. He married Miss Spears in September 2004. They have an infant son, Sean Preston, and she is pregnant with their second child, due this fall.

Compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from Web and wire reports.

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