Jewish World Review Nov. 24, 2004 / 11 Kislev, 5765
No to planned Bacanovic-Stewart meeting; Rita Cosby's memorable party; worst foot forward?: Amadeus II
Reality show guru Mark Burnett spent hours with jailbird Martha Stewart last month at Alderson Federal Prison Camp.
But Peter Bacanovic won't get the same privilege.
I hear that Alderson warden Deborah Hickey has forbidden the domestic diva's former stockbroker and fellow defendant who's appealing his felony conviction of conspiracy to obstruct justice and perjury from seeing his friend of 18 years.
Both the 63-year-old Stewart and the 42-year-old Bacanovic, who was hoping to trek down to West Virginia and visit her after Thanksgiving, are said to be deeply disappointed in the warden's decision.
It's irreversible and comes without elaboration, I hear.
"I can't confirm whether or not the warden did that, because that would be a violation of the privacy act for any inmate," prison spokeswoman Dawn Zobel told this column Tuesday.
But a conviction such as Bacanovic's wouldn't automatically disqualify him, she said, adding that such factors as the freshness of the conviction and prison security concerns could block a visit.
As for Burnett who signed a television deal with Stewart before she began her five-month sentence Oct. 8, and has known her for all of a year he hung out with her for four hours on the prison grounds.
It's against the law for an inmate to talk business, and Burnett insisted they discussed only personal matters.
Meanwhile, I'm told that the unemployed Bacanovic has been fretting about his former Merrill Lynch clients whose portfolios were given to stockbrokers John T. Fitzpatrick and Jacqueline Bianco.
Recently, Fitzpatrick and Bianco were lured from Merrill Lynch to UBS, and now they're trying to bring Bacanovic's ex-clients with them. Bianco and Fitzpatrick received rumored signing bonuses of $5 million and $1.5 million, respectively.
"We wouldn't comment on compensation," UBS spokesman Peter Casey told this column.
RITA COSBY'S MEMORABLE PARTY
When Henry Kissinger was secretary of sate, getting the Nobel Peace Prize and beating back the inevitable war crimes accusations, did he ever imagine that one day Geraldo Rivera would plant sloppy kisses on him?
"Thank you, Geraldo," Dr. K rumbled after the Fox News personality bussed each of Kissinger's jowly cheeks Monday night when introducing him to the crowd at Fox News colleague Rita Cosby's 40th birthday party.
Then the 81-year-old Kissinger, at an event that raised around $300,000 for the Fisher Center for Alzheimer's Research Foundation, daringly tried out a memory-loss joke.
"I've sometimes thought how wonderful it would be if I couldn't remember who my enemies are," Kissinger quipped at the Time Warner Center's V Steakhouse, where the tittering crush included Michael Bolton, Don King, Jocelyn Wildenstein and Kato Kaelin.
Kaelin waxed (and I use the word advisedly) about having once dated a French woman with long armpit hair.
A spy for this column, undoubtedly bitter because she didn't win any raffle prizes, e-mailed that the surgically enhanced Wildenstein was "looking scary in a leather animal printed ensemble and big fluffy hair" and that "Bradford Cohen from 'The Apprentice' was wearing an incredibly gaudy diamond-encrusted watch and bragging how it was worth 50 g's!"
She continued: "The crowd started boozing early and long, and so when a slew of speakers came up to praise Rita, the crowd was rowdy. . . . Don King got up to speak and shamed Steve Forbes into matching his $25,000 donation. . . . Worst of all, though the booze was plentiful, there was BARELY ANY FOOD TO BE HAD!"
But there was plenty of food for a gossip columnist.
AMADEUS II: Julliard School student Jay Greenberg is only 12, but he's already composed five full-length symphonies. CBS News' Scott Pelley reports on Sunday's "60 Minutes" that there hasn't been such a prodigy since Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. "We are talking about a prodigy of the level of the greatest prodigies in history when it comes to composition," music professor Sam Zyman tells Pelley. Piano professor Elizabeth Wolff, meanwhile, confides that the kid amuses himself by playing Beethoven sonatas upside down and backward. And is Greenberg modest? Hardly. He tells Pelley that he never revises his compositions because "it just usually comes right the first time."
WORST FOOT FORWARD?: Kwame Jackson has tried very hard to be nice about fellow "Apprentice" contestant Omarosa Manigault-Stallworth. Until now. Jackson, who just signed a deal with CNN to host a business show, told New York Daily News contributor Jawn Murray: "The only thing that I'm disappointed in with Omarosa is the image that she portrayed for black female professionals. When we all get a chance to be in front of the media with so few images of black professionals, you want to make sure you put your best foot forward." Omarosa was limping and using a cane an injury from a recent "Fear Factor" appearance when she spoke Tuesday at Harlem's Thurgood Marshall Academy to help launch the school's Coca-Cola Apollo Theater Academy. "She was apparently injured from the ropes on her parachute," said event organizer Sheila Eldridge.
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© 2003, Creators Syndicate