Just don't call her an addict

Whitney and Bobby are hooked on everything; Van Damme talks about his cracked nuts. Plus: The return of Chuck Woolery -- he'll be back in two minutes, and two seconds.

By Amy Reiter
Published December 4, 2002 5:21PM (EST)

Hello, her name is Whitney Houston and she has, "at times," been "addicted to a few things" like booze, pot, coke, pills and even sex -- or, as she prefers to put it, "making love."

Did she leave anything out?

And while on the topic of semantics, the distressed diva tells Diane Sawyer in a "Primetime" interview airing Wednesday night, she really doesn't care for the a-word.

"I don't like to think of myself addicted," she says. "I like to think ... I had a bad habit ... which can be broken."

But food, she insists, is not an issue for her. All that eating-disorder talk that surrounded her in the wake of 9/11 is just a gross overreaction to her naturally slender physique.

"Let's get that straight. I am not sick. OK?" Houston says. "I've always been a thin girl. I am not going to be fat, ever. Let's get that straight. Whitney is not going to be fat, ever."

But Whitney might be married to a man with even bigger problems than she herself has.

Bobby Brown claims his marijuana use, while frequent, is strictly for medicinal purposes: It helps him with his bipolar disorder.

"Me and drugs. We're not friends. We're not friends at all," Brown tells Sawyer. "I'm a very high-strung person ... [Marijuana] seems to help me ... from going up and down."

With "not friends" like that, who needs lithium?

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Good news and bad news

"Mother and daughter are resting comfortably. Father is struggling with hair loss."

-- "Malcolm in the Middle's" Jane Kaczmarek and "The West Wing's" Bradley Whitford announcing the birth of their brand-new baby daughter, Mary Louisa Whitford.

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When dolphins attack

Susan Sarandon's seductive charms don't work only on humans. They apparently work on dolphins, too.

Back in the '70s, the actress told celebrity researcher Baird Jones Monday night at a benefit for Martha's Vineyard's Vineyard Theater, Timothy Leary arranged for her to visit the tanks of West Coast researcher John Lilly, who was studying the similarities between humans and dolphins.

"I was allowed to get into a pool with one of his dolphins," Sarandon recalls. "First they had the dolphin just swim past my feet in the wading area. Then I went into the deeper area and I stroked the dolphin, whose name was Joe, each time it went by."

Things progressed rapidly from there.

"After he trusted me more, I took hold of Joe's fin. He let me hold on and we glided around the tank together," she says. "Then Joe stopped swimming horizontally and pushed up against me, shooting up and down."

It being the '70s and all, Sarandon says she "thought the whole experience was just groovy" until she felt a sharp pain on the wrist of the hand in which she was holding the dolphin's fin: Joe's mate, Rosie, had come to claim her man.

Rosie was "virtually standing up right out of the water, towering over me on its rear fins," Sarandon explains. "She seemed to be 12 feet tall, emitting this loud high pitched shrill noise."

Thanks to the intervention of the researchers, the actress managed to escape with only that "warning nibble" on her wrist. But, she now realizes, if Rosie "had made that plunge toward me, I would have been killed instantly, as surely as if Rosie had been a shark. Apparently an enraged dolphin is incredibly dangerous."

The things you don't learn from watching reruns of "Flipper" ...

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What an ass!

"I got my buttocks so tight, I could crack walnuts with them."

-- Jean-Claude Van Damme on the usefulness of his own firm booty, on a documentary on Kylie Minogue airing this weekend on British TV.

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Juicy bits

George Clooney has a confession to make about "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind," the Chuck Barris biopic that he both stars in -- as a mustachioed CIA agent -- and directed: He hated seeing himself with a hairy upper lip almost as much as the rest of us probably will. "I was stuck with it for six months and it didn't go down very well with anyone," Clooney told the Web site This Is London. "I looked like a biker from the Village People." He's got to be a macho man.

What will those reality-TV geniuses come up with next? The latest: a series chronicling the day-to-day adventures of ... Chuck Woolery. Yep, thanks to "The Game Show Network," we'll be able to watch the game show host on the set of his new word game, "Lingo," and watch him interact with his wife and seven children. "We get to know the real Chuck," the show's executive producer, Phil Gurin, tells the Associated Press. And isn't that what we've all been longing for all these years?

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Miss something? Read yesterday's Nothing Personal.

Amy Reiter

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Celebrity George Clooney Susan Sarandon Whitney Houston