The latest from gossip's unverified frontier.

A summary of what's been in the tabloids.
Feb. 10 2006 6:10 PM

Is Britney a Bad Mom?

Plus, stars who read their husbands' e-mail.

Heather Locklear reads Richie Sambora's e-mail.
The pair are headed for divorce court, and Us, Star,and People think they know why. The consensus: Locklear gave the Bon Jovi guitarist the boot after she found an e-mail full of sexy pictures from his former personal assistant. (Star says the e-mail read, "Hi. Hope you like these.") Locklear had long been suspicious of the woman, so she surprised Sambora with divorce papers. But wait! Richie pleads innocent: A "friend" tells People,"Richie's saying that nothing ever happened, that he never asked for the pictures." Another "source" says, "It's absolutely not true that they had an affair" but acknowledges that the e-mail incident "wasn't a great thing to happen when people are on the brink of breaking up anyway, that's for sure." 

Denise Richards reads Charlie Sheen's e-mail, too.
Star reports that as Sheen and Richards were breaking up, Richards discovered an e-mail Sheen had written to a prostitute. Richards then wrote to the woman, who said "she was just one of dozens of pay-for-play companions provided for Charlie by a madam." Sheen's former madam of choice, Heidi Fleiss, offered these words of wisdom in Us: "You can't teach an old dog new tricks. Not even if you are as hot as Denise Richards."

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Nick Lachey shares his pain.
The singer isn't talking about his breakup with Jessica Simpson, but he does have a new single, "What's Left of Me," that expresses some of his anguish, and Us reprints every word. Here's the chorus: " 'Cause I want you / and I feel you / crawling underneath my skin / Like a hunger / like a burning / to find the place I've never been / Now I'm broken, and I'm faded / I'm half the man I thought I would be / You can have, all that's left, (yeah, yeah, yeah) what's left of me." Full lyrics here.

Lance Armstrong vs. Sheryl Crow: Who dumped whom?
"Lance dumped her," Us says plainly, and most of the tabs agree. InTouch says the cyclist has tried to end the relationship four times since September, and the Enquirer says he's always had cold feet. But Star quotes "a source close to the couple" saying, "Sheryl probably couldn't handle Lance's intensity. He lives like a robot. … It got to the point where Sheryl thought she was in the Marines!"

Brad and Angelina go house-hunting.
The star couple hit Europe, attending the World Economic Forum meetings in Davos, and were photographed kissing—for the first time ever!—in Paris. Star quotes "a source at Paris-based realtor Emile Garcin who says, "It looks likely they'll be finalizing the purchase"—of Yves Saint Laurent's five-story, eight-bedroom, 1874 château near Deauville, France—"pretty soon."

Britney endangers her baby!
The tabs work themselves into a self-righteous lather over pictures of Britney Spears driving with her 4-month-old son Sean on her lap, rather than in a car seat. Life & Style has the most damning tidbit: She broke California vehicle code 27360! Spears has since apologized, "I made a mistake and so it is what it is, I guess." For future reference, Star offers a grisly warning from the author of The Safe Baby: A Do-It-Yourself Guide for Home Safety: "If there was a crash, the airbag would crush the baby instantly."

Is J.Lo pregnant?
Star points to her recent shopping spree—onesies, teddy bears, a "Yellow Ducky cuddle coat"—and says that the star and husband Marc Anthony are definitely expecting. "A source" tells the tab, "She was buying clothing for newborns—and she kept saying, 'I would love this on my baby!' " InTouch says she already has some names picked out, "including Bianca and Marco." Star does its customary creepy computer rendition of what the child would look like if it's a girl ("J. Lolita") or a boy ("Little Marcifer"). The girl infant appears to wear mascara and highlight her hair.

Page Six: The Magazine debuts!
Thursday's New York Post came bundled with the first issue of Page Six: The Magazine, a 74-page expansion of the venerable gossip column. The best parts are laid out just like the column, and there are some fun scoops: pictures of 17-year-old Nicollette Sheridan with then-boyfriend Leif Garrett, blind items about New York personalities ("WHICH local anchorwoman had to wear extra makeup recently because her younger, studly husband gave her a black eye? Not on purpose. He accidentally elbowed her during super-passionate sex"). But the supposed "exclusive photos" of a teenage Angelina Jolie are nothing new—yes, she had those huge lips even then—and a ho-hum Oscar preview could run in the Post on any slow news day. Like all good tabs, it's self-obsessed: The debut issue offers a compilation of some of the column's best scoops, an item on who "Page Six" writes about the most (Paris Hilton!), and a gallery of photos of stars reading the Post.

Ben Wasserstein is an associate editor at New York magazine.

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