No time for traffic ticket

Easton, Pa. � Justin Guarini, who came in second on Fox television's "American Idol" singing competition, has decided not to fight a traffic ticket from a March accident.

Guarini, 23, had been scheduled to appear today in Northampton County Court but decided it wasn't worth a trip from Los Angeles where he's recording music, his lawyer said.

"Flying across the country is a little extreme for a traffic ticket," said attorney Douglas C. Roger Jr., who is also the singer's uncle. "He is extremely tied up."

Guarini was cited by police for following too closely in the March 12 traffic accident in Bethlehem. The offense carries a $25 fine and $75 in court costs.

TV viewers selected 20-year-old Texan Kelly Clarkson over Guarini, the big-haired heartthrob from Doylestown, Pa., as the winner of the "American Idol" competition.

Whole lotta Love

New York � You've really gotta love Courtney Love if you tune into MTV2 this weekend.

For 24 straight hours, the rock diva will be in control of the music network. She'll play the videos she likes, invite her friends over for an on-camera jab fest and do whatever else she pleases.

This is the first time the network has relinquished control to an artist for a day, representatives said.

Love won't even need to stay awake the entire 24 hours; an MTV spokesman says when she sleeps, the network will probably show snippets of her dozing.

The former lead singer of Hole will take over the MTV studios in Times Square for "24 Hours of Love" at 7 p.m. CDT Saturday.

Love, the widow of Nirvana's Kurt Cobain, has also appeared in the films "200 Cigarettes" and "The People vs. Larry Flynt."

Redding honored with statue

Macon, Ga. � Otis Redding, the soul singer best known for "(Sittin' on) The Dock of the Bay," has been honored in his hometown with a 7-foot bronze statue that shows him sitting on a dock, playing his guitar.

Redding's widow, Zelma Redding, attended the unveiling ceremony Sunday in Gateway Park on the banks of the Ocmulgee River.

"Today, he would say, 'I finally got all the respect I deserved,"' she told The Macon Telegraph.

Redding was killed in a plane crash on Dec. 10, 1967, three days after the song was recorded. He was on his way to a concert in Wisconsin.

Gates family growing

Seattle � Microsoft Corp. Chairman Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda, have a third child, baby girl Phoebe Adelle Gates.

The baby was born Saturday at Overlake Hospital Medical Center in suburban Bellevue. The birth was announced Monday.

The baby weighed 9 pounds, 13 ounces, family spokeswoman Annemarie Hou said.

The couple have a 6-year-old daughter, Jennifer, and a 3-year-old son, Rory.


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