Friday, January 13, 2006

Assignment: Mirth

[[C E L E B S]] * OK, I confess that this item exists largely just so I can feature the cover of the February edition of Esquire. I mean, yowzah! However, mounted on top of model Erin Wasson in her skimpies (wait, that didn’t come out right), this issue also contains a profile of country singer Tim McGraw (in which the hardcore Democrat shares his interest in someday running for the governorship of Tennessee), a scattershot interview with Uma Thurman (“I certainly didn’t want to become a sensational sex symbol”), and the mag’s latest “Dubious Achievement Awards” section (this time including the inspired title of Jessica Simpson’s forthcoming memoir, I Want My Hymen Back: Ending My Marriage, Embracing My Family, and a reminder of how last year a onetime meteorologist at Idaho’s KPVI-TV “blamed Hurricane Katrina on the Japanese yakuza”).

Let’s not forget, either, Esquire’s Q&A with William Shatner, the 74-year-old former Captain James T. Kirk from Star Trek, who has made a rather remarkable comeback as sexist, gun-loving, and mad-cow-stricken shyster Denny Crane in Boston Legal. A few of the things he’s learned from life:

● “Sex should be a template for the day. You need to start slow and end completely.”
● “The line between making a total ass of yourself and being fundamentally funny is very narrow.”
● “We meet aliens every day who have something to give us. They come in the form of people with different opinions.”
● “Being an icon is overblown. Remember, and icon is moved by a mouse.”
● “Empathy is a learned characteristic. Some people take longer to learn it than others.”

And while we’re on the subject of Boston Legal ... Did anyone else notice, during last Tuesday’s episode, a scene in which Denny Crane flips open a new cell phone, only to have the damn thing chirp just like one of the communicators on the original Trek series? A marvelous in-joke!

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