“Doesn’t matter to me who wins. I’m gonna have both candidates on my show election week. You see, for me, it’s a win-win!”

That was CNN’s big guy Larry King, chatting with fans on his way out of his fave Hollywood deli, Nate ‘n’ Al’s. (Larry is a realist — the showbiz world will go on, no matter who occupies the White House.) Larry was with his wife, Shawn Southwick King. They were squeezed together in a booth, very affectionate, sharing a chopped salad.

Also cuddling at this famous eatery were James Woods and his — need we emphasize? — young, young girlfriend. (An amused onlooker said, “They were going at it like Archie and Veronica on a first date!”) Woods is one of those guys who refuses to find the beauty in mature women. But he is upfront about it, at least. And still a sexy devil, I must say.


I am falling over myself laughing that John McCain’s staff has turned on Sarah Palin, because she’s “become a diva.” I’m shocked. Shocked! I mean, really, what did anybody expect? Maybe John McCain didn’t realize it, but from the moment Sarah took the stage in Denver, she made him irrelevant to his own campaign. It was she, not he, who is really running for president, and it is she, not he, who galvanized the Republicans. She was a diva from the word go.

If McCain loses, the masses who love her will blame him — a man they never much cared for anyway. She will be elevated and “schooled” for 2012. Those liberal pundits who trash her everyday and predict she’ll “slink back to Alaska” — oh, they are so wrong!


“Does anybody still wear … a hat?” That is the famous opening line to the great Sondheim song, “The Ladies Who Lunch” (performed so memorably by Elaine Stritch.)

Well, I can tell you one lady who still wears (or at least still loves) hats — Miss Elizabeth Taylor. During her recent trip to England, where she caught up with childhood friends, Elizabeth also shopped — for gowns, for shoes, for jewels and for … hats.

The star of stars summoned Britain’s Philip Treacy — designer of edgy, over-the-top headgear for daring ladies of fashion — to her Dorchester Hotel suite. Treacy was a trifle busy when the call came in — in fact he was in the midst of a photo shoot. But now as ever, Elizabeth Taylor does not like to be kept waiting.

Treacy stopped his photo shoot, gathered up his top model and dozens of chapeaus and rushed over to meet with England’s other Queen. There was a lot of campy carrying on as La Liz ooohed and aaahed and made her selections.

Elizabeth’s entire stay in England was like that — high-spirited and full of good times. This was in no sense her “last voyage” or a morbid farewell to her birthplace, as has been suggested. Elizabeth is confined to a wheelchair, but she accepts that. Her public life is no longer very active. Her private life remains full of friends and family. I spoke with several members of the star’s inner circle. One said, “Isn’t it clear she’s not on her deathbed … she was strong enough to make the trip, which is, admittedly, an effort for her these days. Listen, these days travel is hard when you’re 20 and in good health.”

Still another remarked, “Elizabeth doesn’t look back. She is not nostalgic. She doesn’t live in her past and she rarely makes firm plans for the future — because she knows how suddenly life can change. She lives almost entirely in the moment. Today’s moment is good. She’ll think about tomorrow when she gets to it.”

Oh, she has planned a huge Thanksgiving gathering at her Bel-Air house. Elizabeth has not changed at all in that regard. When I knew her back in the day, traveling all over the world to see her on various movie sets, she’d barely be through with breakfast before she was thinking about dinner. A lifelong joyful hedonist when it came to food; it always gave her pleasure to think ahead in that regard.