Bill Clinton apparently feels Howell Raines' pain. The former president reportedly got on the horn with New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. to plead for forbearance for the paper's now-departed executive editor ... alas, to no avail. "When Howell Raines was editorial page editor of The New York Times, he notably did not call for Bill Clinton's resignation over the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Now, Clinton may have returned the favor," reports Paul D. Colford in the New York Daily News.
Speaking of feeling pain ... Beck was "in considerable pain and discomfort" after he was "accidentally slammed in the ribs by a local working stage hand" while watching the band Blur and waiting to go on at the Field Day music festival in New Jersey over the weekend. According to the mononamed musician's official Web site, "The festival medical crew were very concerned that there may be a broken rib, an injury that could puncture Beck's lung if he were to perform." Beck got the all-clear after being rushed to a nearby hospital for X-rays. "Fortunately, there was nothing broken."
It's been up for only a few days, but already more than 6 million readers have peeped at Martha Stewart's new Web site, MarthaTalks.com, according to a note on its front page. The site now boasts a new feature: Notes to Martha. "I can still remember the very first time I heard your name, so many years ago, on one of your early PBS specials -- you were preparing a turkey wrapped in puffed pastry," writes Anthony Lupinacci of New Haven, Conn. "I was inspired by you from the start." "Thank you for everything that you have taught me about myself by giving me the courage to try things that I may have never experienced," writes Lisa D. Davis of Sunnyvale, Calif. "I have made leaf bowls, prepared everything from creme brulée to salmon to ice cream, grown a cutting garden ..." And Sheila Lanthier of Montreal, Quebec, remembers the time that she and her sister, caught in a terrible ice storm, asked themselves "What would Martha do?" (Move over, Jesus.) Incidentally, when Martha was brought in for a mug shot and fingerprinting on Monday, she signed her name "with the same curlicues portrayed on her new Web site."
What does Spike Lee have against Pamela Anderson? The filmmaker pointed to a cartoon voiced by the former "Baywatch" star as one of the reasons he's suing to keep Viacom from renaming TNN "Spike TV," as planned. "I don't want to be associated with some 'Stripperella' crap," said Lee. (The Associated Press)
One thing can be said about Rosie O'Donnell's art, at the Mumford Gallery in Provincetown, Mass.: It's better than her haircut. Inspired by the events of 9/11, the former daytime talker's paintings have a certain crude charm.
And while we're on the subject of crude charm: Tom Green is "extremely excited, extremely extremely extremely excited, very very very very extremely excited," about his new MTV talk show debuting this summer, he told the Associated Press.
-- Amy Reiter