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Cher bathes, praises friend from Flint


By Norm Clarke
VSiN columnist

Cher singled out an audience member Friday at the Park Theater and told the crowd she admired this person so much for being “an ass-kicker” that she treated her to … a bath.

“I don’t do this very often,” Cher said during an early break in her show at the Monte Carlo. “I don’t introduce people very often. But I have a really dear friend here, and I love her and I know you’ll want to meet her. Her name is Karen Weaver and she is the Mayor of Flint, Michigan.

“This chick is an ass kicker.”

“I’ll tell you a story,” Cher continued. “I was in Michigan, stumping you know. I did six rallies in four cities in one day.

“We’re back in the hotel, talking, and she said, ‘You know what I really miss? I miss a bath.’ And I thought, yeah, I know, I’d miss a bath too if I didn’t have water.”


So Cher tells the mayor, “You’re taking a bath.’ And I draw the water.”

Cher has agreed to star in a Lifetime Channel movie about Flint’s water crisis. She will serve as executive producer, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Katie Couric’s on board, too.

Cher made headlines last year when she had 181,000 bottles of water donated to Flint through a collaboration with Icelandic Glacial.

She also made waves by calling for the execution of Gov. Rick Snyder after a growing scandal that resulted in 13 people being charged in connection after tests showed elevated blood lead levels in children.

JARREAU REMEMBERED
The death of musician Al Jarreau on Sunday reminded me of one of my favorite class-act stories.

Here’s the excerpt from my 2009 book, “Vegas Confidential: Sinsational Celebrity Tales:”
 
“Before Al Jarreau’s show at the Suncoast in November 2005, Lisa Boyens, one of his long-time fans, sent him a bouquet of roses. Late in the show, Boyens told her husband, Craig, that she was feeling tingling and numbness in her hands and face. While leaving the showroom, she collapsed and went into a coma after suffering a brain embolism. She was rushed to Desert Springs Hospital.

“Boyens’ family, including her three children aged three to 14, received a much-needed boost two days later when the Grammy Award-winning jazz musician arrived with a rose from the bouquet she had given him.

“Boyens, 39, died two days later. Family friend Randy Walker said Jarreau’s gesture ‘was such an amazing sign of support for someone so busy to go to the hospital and take the time to get the children’s names before he arrived. He told them he would dry out the flowers and give them to the family.’”
 
A DIPLOMA DELAYED
Congratulations to Las Vegas entertainment writer Norm Johnson, a local legend, for getting his high school diploma – 67 years later.

Johnson was skipping classes at San Diego High in 1950 when a judge laid down the law: enlist in the military or face juvenile detention. Johnson, 17, opted for the U.S. Air Force and was soon deployed to fight in the Korean War.

That was the beginning of a remarkable journey that included “amazing jobs and encounters with dignitaries and celebrities – bodyguard to Gen. Douglas MacArthur, backup dancer to Elvis Presley in ‘Jailhouse Rock’ to racing cars with James Dean, among them – that Johnson chalks it up to smarts, luck and timing,” according to the Los Angeles Times.

Why did it matter, after all these years?

“I was surprised that it actually does matter to me this much,” Johnson, 83, told the newspaper.
 
The longtime Las Vegas resident is still in the celebrity business, handling publicity and writing a blog.

THE SCENE AND HEARD
Auditions for the animated film “Show Dogs” were held Saturday at an off-Strip location on Tropicana.

The premise, from IMDB.com: “Max, a macho solitary police dog is ordered to go to undercover as a primped show dog in a prestigious dog show, along with a human partner, to avert disaster from happening.”

Will Arnett plays the human. Voices are by Stanley Tucci, Shaquille O’Neal, Gabriel Iglesias and Alan Cummings.

The audition was for an older man with a foreign accent who plays a scene opposite Arnett’s character. Among those auditioning was Rusty Meyers, a veteran actor who is also the casting director. He played a security guard in the “Oceans 11” remake and the role of Col. Tom Parker in the short-lived Cirque du Soleil show “Viva Elvis.”…

It’s no secret New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and President Donald Trump have been on the same political playbook page for some time.

I got an early hint of Brady’s conservative leanings in 2004. I was having dinner at N9ne Steakhouse at the Palms hotel with conservative firebrand Matt Drudge, founder of the DrudgeReports.com news site.
 
Palms owner George Maloof walked up to the table with Brady. When I introduced Brady to Drudge, the NFL star shook Drudge’s hand, nodded and said, “Big fan.” …
 
Las Vegas star chef Julian Serrano was at the Super Bowl in Houston last week as the guest of a Texas oilman. Also in the luxury box was ESPN SportsCenter host Steve Levy, a Las Vegas regular.

Serrano marveled at the organizational efficiency at halftime when the crew at NRG Stadium set up and dismantled the stage for Lady Gaga “so quickly.”

ON THIS DAY IN …
February 12, 1977: “Blansky’s Beauties,” a “Happy Days” spinoff starring Nancy Walker as den mother to a bevy of Las Vegas showgirls, debuts on ABC. Reviews are unkind and the show is cancelled after 13 episodes. Cast includes Scott Baio, Eddie Mekka and Pat Morita.
 
SIGHTING
Disney XD channel star Kelli Berglund, celebrating her 21st birthday at Absinthe (Caesars Palace) on Friday. After the show she took photos with The Gazillionaire and his assistant, Wanda Widdles. Saturday, she was at Topgolf (MGM Grand) with friends and family.

THE PUNCH LINE
“Shaquille O’Neal says that he’s trying to eat healthier. He’s cut soda, bread, sandwiches and fast food out of his diet. What asked what he’s eating instead, he said, ‘Mostly tree.’” – Late-night host Jimmy Fallon.

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