Though she doesn't harbor a full-fledged grudge against August quite like that of her Slate colleague David Plotz, Keeping Tabs knows that the eighth month is a notoriously dull time of year in the nation's capital. But while the rest of her Washington neighbors are fighting to keep the doldrums—not to mention all those socks-and-shorts-clad tourists—at bay, Keeping Tabs is happy as a clam; she's been living vicariously through the residents of Tabloidland, whose emotional cups have been running over of late, inspiring some of the most memorably florid prose in recent memory. The Globe's tell-all interview with Jennifer Lopez's ex-husband, waiter Ojani Noa, for example, contains the following description of their first amorous encounter: "Her tanned body looked like the promised land," Noa is quoted as saying. "I practically threw her onto the bed, and we had wild, animalistic sex that lasted for hours."
Keeping Tabs started to suspect that the tabs were operating in over-the-top mode when she read the Globe's account of the baptism of Celine Dion's 6-month-old son, which is described with all the pomp and circumstance of a papal investiture: "He wasn't actually dunked, but was thoroughly doused with copious sprinklings," explains the Globe, apparently unironically. "Then he was painstakingly dressed up again in the oversized baptismal gown." Well, yes, that's usually the way baptisms work, isn't it?
When a routine baptism gets that kind of attention, perhaps it's no surprise that last week's Star story about model Niki Taylor, who returned home from several months in the hospital after being critically injured in a car accident, reads like a scene straight out of The Young and the Restless. The Star's "source" must have been taking scrupulous notes to reconstruct the heartwrenching reunion between Taylor and her twin sons, Jake and Hunter:
With tears streaming down her face, Niki knelt down and opened her arms the instant she stepped through the front door of her parents' home, the source explains. Hunter and Jake rushed to Niki's waiting arms. Immediately, her face lit up and the three of them hugged and kissed and cried.
After a long embrace and lots of kisses all around, Hunter whispered: "Mommy, we thought you were going to die."
Then Jake said: "Promise you'll never leave us again."
Her voice choked with emotion, the supermodel mom vowed: "I promise you that mommy is home for good."
But not all the hugging and kissing in Tabloidland these days is quite so maternal; in fact, no one seems able to keep their hands to themselves lately. According to the Globe, the on-again/off-again romance between George Clooney and model Lisa Snowden is very much on; the two were "spotted cooing and cuddling at a posh London restaurant before driving off into the night together." Similarly, the Globe reports that actors Kristin Davis and Alec Baldwin "made out like a couple of teenagers" at a Manhattan movie theater, and that Hollywood Madam Heidi Fleiss and actor Tom Sizemore were "smooching up a storm" in Beverly Hills. ("They looked like teenagers in love," says an eyewitness.) Meanwhile, Tom Cruise and Penélope Cruz were "all over each other" at Sofio's restaurant, an "eyewitness to the lovebirds' canoodling" tells the Star. "They were flirting, kissing, and hugging in a private candlelit corner of the restaurant. They shocked the other diners." (If Cruise has indeed fallen for the Spanish beauty, it really should come as no surprise; a Globe source explains that Cruz "speaks the language of LOVE very well indeed. Just one look from her can melt the heart of any red-blooded male. ... The wives and girlfriends of some of Hollywood's most desirable stars must be quaking in their designer shoes!")
Elizabeth Taylor and her supposed new beau, actor Jeff Goldblum, must have also gotten the PDA memo. Taylor—who is said to be "acting like a lovesick teen"—and Goldblum reportedly "stunned diners" at Hollywood's Le Dome when Goldblum "insisted on licking Liz's bejeweled fingers after their elegant meal. He delicately kissed each finger and whispered sweet nothings to her," an "observer" tells the Star. "He stared at her like there was no one else in the room. She was blushing and giggled uncontrollably." The Globe's "observer" pretty much concurs, saying the two were "cooing to each other and playing footsie under the table like young lovers."
When they're not being nauseatingly in love, the couples of Tabloidland appear to be locked in bitter feuds, with emotions running predictably high. Keeping Tabs was particularly impressed by the Star's careful explication, complete with five numbered, step-by-step photos, of model Cindy Crawford's "Lovers' Spat" with her husband, Rande Gerber, at a Malibu park; she supposedly was "furious" that Gerber had purchased movie tickets for their two-year old son when it was past his nap time and "the tot was obviously too pooped to play." Crawford reportedly "roared at Rande like a mama bear protecting her cub."
Also said to be roaring is Sen. Hillary Clinton, who, according to this week's Globe cover, has gone "nuts" over her husband's new Harlem office space. "She's just livid," reveals a political insider. "She knows it's going to be his own personal passion pit—and it's made her even more determined than ever to go ahead with her divorce plans."
Although the erstwhile Clinton divorce has been in the tabloid rotation for months, last week marked the tabs' first pronouncement that the 7-month-long marriage of Madonna and director Guy Ritchie is kaput. The couple reportedly had an "ugly faceoff" at a London restaurant that left Madonna "so upset, she had to grasp a handrail for support before getting into their waiting limo." The Globe predicts that the pair "could be history before their first anniversary!"
Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston, meanwhile, had only just made it to their first anniversary when a "crisis exploded," according to the Star. Pitt is said to have "gone ballistic" because his new bride has had three onscreen lesbian encounters. "Brad has nothing against gays of either sex, but he can't understand what has happened to his beautiful wife, " a "pal" tells the Globe. "He married his ideal woman, someone he was proud to take home to meet his parents, but now she's playing in lesbian fantasies one after another. And he knows that even in tolerant Hollywood people are snickering behind his back at the bare-knuckled macho star married to a lesbian icon." Keeping Tabs was distraught at the thought of any such snickering intruding on the Pitts' happiness, much preferring the Globe's optimistic report that the couple is planning to go into isolation on a remote island in the Indian Ocean so that they can start a family. "They'd like everything to be totally serene when Jennifer conceives," explains an insider. Don't sweat it, Brad and Jen. We're sure you'll be cuddling and cooing in no time.