Monday, June 2, 2003

Mount Clay set for renaming

Concord, N.H. -- Henry Clay is out; Ronald Reagan is in.

The Senate voted 18-5 on Thursday to rename Mount Clay in the White Mountains after former President Reagan.

The bill, passed earlier by the House, goes to Gov. Craig Benson. Benson spokesman Keith Herman said the governor supported the renaming.

Mount Clay is the first peak on the ridge north of Mount Washington, the highest mountain in the Northeast. Clay is 5,533 feet high compared with Washington, which stands at 6,288 feet.

Supporters said it was appropriate to substitute Reagan's name because Clay was never president. Clay was a statesman in the 1800s nicknamed the Great Pacificator for finding solutions that postponed the Civil War.

'Top Model' contender finds other contestants too vapid

Albuquerque, N.M. -- While other contestants lead prayer meetings or quote cartoon characters, UPN's "America's Next Top Model" contestant Elyse Sewell quotes a Nobel Prize-winning biochemist, complains of "vapid" conversations with her competitors and calls modeling irrelevant.

Sewell's brother, Everest, 18, said his sister was "the only articulate one on the show."

Sewell, a clinical researcher with degrees in Spanish and biology from the University of New Mexico who says she wants to become a physician, is competing against nine other women.

The premise: Ten gorgeous women share a New York loft, pose in bikinis and wait, weekly, to see who gets axed next by a panel of judges.

Pulitzer Prize author tries hand at stage debut

Seattle -- After more than two decades in theater, August Wilson finally has the acting bug.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of such acclaimed Broadway plays as "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" and "Joe Turner's Come and Gone" made his stage debut two weeks ago with "How I Learned What I Learned."

And, years after he turned down roles in Spike Lee's "Malcolm X" and Alan Pakula's "The Pelican Brief," he makes his movie debut this month as narrator of "The Naked Proof," an independent film premiering at the Seattle International Film Festival.

In "How I Learned What I Learned," Wilson, 58, recalls his early adulthood, proud mother, poet-junkie friends and the street ethics of 1950s Pittsburgh.

Not ready for Oval Office

Seattle -- Oprah for president?

A fan was handing out orange bumper stickers promoting the idea, but don't hold your breath.

The idea doesn't interest Oprah Winfrey -- top daytime TV talk-show host, magazine publisher, movie star, honored literacy booster and all-around mover and shaker.

"People say, 'Never say never,"' Winfrey said with a broad smile. "But when it comes to politics, I can say, 'Never."'

Winfrey was in Seattle Saturday for the second stop in her "Live Your Best Life Tour" sponsored by O, The Oprah Magazine.