Jewish World Review March 17, 2004 / 24 Adar, 5764

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Consumer Reports


Remembering Hillary %*&$#! Clinton; PUT AWAY THAT KRYPTONITE!; more


http://www.jewishworldreview.com | NEW YORK — As New York's junior senator, Hillary Clinton has proved herself a paragon of poise — and one of the Democrats' brightest stars. She rivals President Bush in her ability to raise cash and is frequently touted as a future president herself.


But the charismatic Clinton was not always so polished.


New York attorney Joseph Califano — a longtime Democratic powerbroker who worked for Presidents Lyndon Johnson and Jimmy Carter between stints as a corporate lawyer — remembers quite a different Hillary.


In his soon to be published memoir, "Inside: A Public and Private Life," Califano recalls the first time he met the future first lady on July 24, 1970, during an era of protest and turmoil.


At a Senate hearing on the plight of migrant workers, Califano was representing Coca Cola Chairman Paul Austin — whose corporate division, Minute Maid, was under fire in Florida.


"As (we) entered the Caucus Room on that steamy Washington morning, it was so jammed with spectators that many were standing and sitting on the floor," Califano writes. "Anti-establishment fervor . . . was palpable in the hearing room.


"About halfway down the aisle, a young woman with dark hair and thick-rimmed glasses abruptly came in front of me and said, 'You sold out, you motherf — — , you sold out!' I kept walking, pretending to ignore her."


The potty-mouthed protester was none other than Hillary Rodham.


Califano didn't take her outburst personally. Nearly three years later, he offered her a job at the bluechip Washington law firm Williams, Connolly & Califano — but she opted instead to join future hubby Bill Clinton in Arkansas.


My request for comment from Clinton went unanswered Tuesday.


"We still haven't talked about the incident," Califano told me.


I have a feeling that's about to change.


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INDIA AND THE BRITISH MONARCHY


Glam model-hotelier India Hicks — who's in town promoting "Island Life," the coffee-table book she produced with photographer David Loftus and her husband David Flint Wood about their beloved Harbour Island — is enviably pedigreed for a life of style and taste.


The thirtysomething mother of three (who presided over Tuesday night's posh book parties at the Ralph Lauren store and Bungalow 8 wearing a revealing miniskirt exposing her washboard tummy and nut-brown navel) is the granddaughter of Lord Mountbatton, the Brits' last viceroy of India, the daughter of interior design deity David Hicks and the goddaughter of Prince Charles.


"Can you imagine England without the royal family? It would be a disaster," Hicks told me the morning after a high-class mob feted her book — everyone from Ralph Lauren to the Sykes siblings (Plum, Lucy and Tom) to Ghislaine Maxwell to Prince Dimitri and Prince Michael of Yugoslavia and Princess Alexandra of Greece.


As for the British royals, "They do work very hard. Prince Charles works incredibly hard, and takes his position very seriously," said Hicks, who was a bridesmaid 23 years ago in his fateful wedding to Diana Spencer.


"She was a mega mega-star — the greatest star in the world — and I guess that's hard to let go of," Hicks said, noting that the public appetite for all things Diana remains insatiable. "I just wish people would think a little bit about what all that does to her children. They don't want to have that in their face all the time — rammed down their throats."


THE BRIEFING


MAD ABOUT THE BOY!: Ivana Trump is throwing an elegant birthday dinner at her Palm Beach mansion Friday for her boyfriend of more than two years, Italian model and aspiring actor Rossano Rubicondi. "We are having a good time," Ivana told me Tuesday. "Marriage? You never say never, but I have three grown children and I've done it and been there. Not yet, but you'll be the first to know," she added. "Rossano and I have a lot of fun together. He's young, he's sporty, he's healthy — and I'd rather be a baby sitter than a nurse. Donald will not like that, but it's just too freaking bad." The ex-wife of Donald Trump is 55 years old, and her main squeeze just turned 32 on Sunday.


WHO COULD WRITE THIS STUFF?: Gotta love that Jessica Simpson. According to The Washington Post, the ditzy star of MTV's hit reality show "Newlyweds" found herself face to face with Cabinet official Gale Norton during a White House tour on Sunday. When Simpson was introduced to President Bush's secretary of the Interior, she eagerly told Norton: "You've done a nice job decorating the White House."


PUT AWAY THAT KRYPTONITE!: Television hunk Tom Welling, who plays Clark Kent in the WB series "Smallville," charmed Tuesday night's crowd at the Directors Guild of America in Los Angeles with his shy and winning ways. But when the formal presentation on the popular show ended, members of the audience yelled "Tom! Tom!" as they rushed the stage with their autograph books, and Welling was booed when he left instead of sticking around to sign them. One autograph hound e-mailed me that he was so incensed by Welling's departure that he complained to "Smallville" cast member Annette O'Toole, who plays Clark's mother, Martha. "You should teach your son some manners," he scolded. Turns out that Welling had to catch a plane to Vancouver, where "Smallville" is filmed.



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