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Crush of the Week

David Letterman’s assistant, Stephanie Birkitt, seems like she’d be the perfect girlfriend. She’s one of those people who seems exceedingly normal but is in fact deeply mischievous, totally game and most importantly, knows how to carry a joke way beyond its logical ending until she sucks you into her own, deliriously fun world. She shows up occasionally on the Late Show to say things to Dave such as, “Thank you very much, Mr. Carney.” He refers to her by constantly changing nicknames, and not nicknames like Stumpy or Big Joe, but really great nicknames like “Monty” and “Vicky.” And he sets her up now and then to ask celebrity guests her signature question: “Have you seen or touched any monkeys?” There’s something wonderful about the pair’s muffled smiles at these totally inexplicable gags and the lengths Stephanie is willing to go in pursuit of such specific and charming hilarity. And for that, she is our crush of the week. — Neal Medlyn

Quotes of the Week

“Nine o’clock, Mr. Excitement here is sound asleep, and I’m watching Desperate Housewives — with Lynne Cheney. Ladies and gentlemen, I AM a desperate housewife. I mean, if those women on that show think they’re desperate, they oughta be with George . . . I’m proud of George. He’s learned a lot about ranching since that first year when he tried to milk the horse. What’s worse, it was a male horse. — Laura Bush. The First Lady cracks a joke about a horse penis, and she’s championed on the front page of national papers for her charm; you make the same joke and are asked to leave a bar. John Edwards was right; there are two Americas!

“I don’t look at it as censorship.” —  State Representative Gerald Allen, on his initiative to ban gay books (including those by Tennessee Williams, Truman Capote and Gore Vidal) from Alabama school libraries.

“Does your willy get mistaken for Crispen Glover? Can at least one of your areolas win a Robert Dinero look alike contest?” — From a Craigslist ad called “Do your genitals look like a celebrity?” seeking “models.”

LE TIGRE LASHES OUT AT FUR IN NEW PETA PSA” — Least shocking press release we got this week.

“We’re not saying Yorkie is ‘not for girls’ to be offensive but to let the British male know that we are for him alone . . . Women Yorkie eaters can switch to an Aero or Little Rolo if they like, Yorkie’s feelings won’t be hurt.” — Those crazy British candy marketers sure do know how to whip second-wave feminists into a frenzy.

“¡Hola! So, you think you have the frijoles to be an el Frido? It takes energy, my friend, and passion. But go ahead, take your best shot.” — Frida Kahlo, after finding out that she is our intern’s dead celebrity soulmate in the wacky “soul mate” section of

“When the sexiest thing in the current Scanner is the promise of seeing Tony Micelli’s wang, it’s been a bad week.” — An email from one of our avid, grouchy readers. How would you like it if we came to YOUR workplace and heckled YOU as YOU searched the web for sex-related humor? What? You don’t get paid to search the web for sex-related humor? Hmmm . . .


Photos of the Week

So Laura Bush isn’t getting any, and this photo of her hubby is all over the place — is Karl Rove trying to tell us something?

Speaking of signs, is this the Virgin Mary or the Virgin Mary’s vagina making a cameo under a Chicago overpass?

The back-stabbing, the porn tapes, the richie-rich hauteur, fine — but grammarians won’t ever forgive Paris for this.

Do you suppose that priest positioned his collar like that on purpose to give the new pope devil horns?

In the News

Tina Fey is pregnant! Devoted basement-dwelling, blog-addicted Weekend Update fans stare at a photo of her husband and wonder what he has that they don’t.

Former Nerve intern’s indie porn featured in the New York Times!

David Furnish and Elton John are getting married! As intern Adam points out, we all owe a lot to David Furnish, “who helped John overcome his drug and alcohol addictions, leaving him more time to yell at the paparazzi.”

Tabloid Fodder: The Tabloids Reflect on the Week

What they’re thinking: Classy, that’s us. We don’t care about break-ups and cheating. We care about Rosie O’Donnell-as-developmentally challenged woman in Riding the Bus With My Sister. We care about Brooke Shields’ post-partum depresssion. We care about BEAUTY.

Us Weekly
What they’re thinking: Boo-yah! We totally did it! It only cost us $1 million, but we got photos of Brad and Angelina on vacation together in Africa. No, really! Check it out! We did! We can’t believe it, but we got ’em! That’s E-X-C-L-U-S-I-V-E!

In Touch
What they’re thinking: Did Martha violate her parole? Isn’t Colin Farrell a great dad? Anyone else notice Matthew McConaughey’s been wearing the same white suit a lot lately? Who feels me?

What they’re thinking: Uh, why spend a million dollars for some photos you can generate for free on your own computer?

Scanner appears every Tuesday.
Research assistants: Sarah Harrison, Gwynne Watkins, Matt Hickman,
Myung Joh, Adam Kaufman and Andy Duncan.
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