A collection of handwritten notes, poems and sketches by the late John Lennon has smashed auction estimates after going under the hammer in New York. A rhyme called The Fat Budgie, valued at $35,000 (£21,875), sold for $143,000 (£89,375), while a manuscript titled I Sat Belonely was snapped up for $137,000 (£85,625), four times its estimate.
Meanwhile, a piece named Neville Club, which had been expected to sell for around $12,000 (£7,500), proved to be another huge draw, fetching $100,000 (£62,500) following a bidding war.
Most of the documents were produced by Lennon in connection with In His Own Write and A Spaniard In The Works, two books of poetry, drawings and musings which he released in 1964 and 1965.
The items in the Sotheby's auction, which took place on Wednesday (04Jun14), previously belonged to British publisher Tom Maschler. It was the largest private collection of Lennon's work to ever go on sale.
Former Budgie rocker Pete Boot is winning his battle with Parkinson's disease thanks to risky new treatment that appears to have slowed down his condition. The Welsh drummer was diagnosed with the disease over 20 years ago, but last year (Feb13), he underwent an operation that planted electrodes in his brain.
Boot, 64, claims the ground-breaking procedure has helped improve his mobility by up to 90 per cent.
He tells Wales Online, "The operation should give me another 10 years of continued mobility. It's worth the risk because I have had it so long.
"My choices were pretty limited. I could have had the deep brain stimulation or I could have had something put into my stomach, which they put gel in, but that did not sound nice. The other option was huge injections that I would have had to give myself every day. I didn't fancy that, so I took the deep brain stimulation. They drilled two holes in my head and passed four electrodes through my brain, out the side of my head and back down my neck and into my chest. Embedded in my chest, a bit like a pacemaker, is a stimulator."
There are so many reasons to tune into Big Brother — the tacky decor, the screaming fights, the Chenbot's soothingly predictable actions — but the real reason we all watch is to see which of these delusional yahoos is going to win $500,000 for sitting in a house and crying about how they have to eat slop for three months. We all need heroes to root for and villains to hate, hotties to ogle and notties to disparage, and at least one cocktail waitress to drive us absolutely insane.
Before the premiere tonight, I'm going to rank them based on, well, not much really. Basically I'll just scan their photo and bio on the CBS website and decide who I think is going to win. I'm just doing this for the newcomers, because we still don't know which four former house guests will joining the house (and just what the separate game they're playing will be). Look below.
Ashley: This Southern California cliche lists one of her hobbies as "making dream boards." Seriously. My fist just punched the computer screen. She's probably a vegan. She lists "giving LOVE" as her purpose in life. Lady, you are on a reality TV show that is about being mean and lying to people. You are so done for.
Rank: She'll be out by week three unless she starts a showmance.
Danielle: She is a nurse, which means she's kind of smart. She's young and pretty, which means the guys will want her around. She likes "scrapbooking," which is not an actual activity, which means I want her to paper cut her pinky finger a million times. Also, she says her strategy is for people to think she's dumb and not a threat. You know what that sounds like? "Floaters grab a life vest!"
Rank: Top five.
Frank: He is unemployed. He spends his days at the beach and working out. (Finally, a good body!) When asked what his BB strategy was, he said, "Absolutely." Um, they weren't asking if you have one. They were asking what it is! Then he says what it is and it's some stupid basketball metaphor where he is "running the show." Um, think again.
Rank: He'll be out week two for playing too hard.
Ian: This nerd has an actual collection of glasses. Man, nerds are really good at this show. And his idol is Dr. Will. This kid is a ringer.
Rank: Final two.
Jenn: She is a bassist and former member of the band Kittie, which has a song that starts, "I woke up in a pool of vomit." Just saying. Despite her awful hair (see below), her motto is to "ENJOY YO'SELF!" That makes me think she's gonna be pretty badass.
Rank: She'll make it at least half way.
Jodi: She says she just wants to "be herself." Usually the people who say that are really annoying. Considering she refers to her "hubby" twice in her bio, she already annoys me. Just wait until everyone in the house gets a hold of her.
Rank: She'll be one of the first five out.
Joe: Wow, this father sounds like an actual real human being. Sure, he's a little sappy, but that could be good, right? Also, he's a chef, so you know everyone is going to want to stay on his good side and get him cooking slop cookies or something.
Rank: Final five.
JoJo: This bartender from Staten Island says she likes when people are "real" and hates Rachel, probably because she's going to be exactly like her. Her name is short for MoJoJoJo, because she was named after the monkey from Powerpuff Girls.
Rank: "Ask Again Later."
Kara: Kara is a model. Excuse me while I remove my finger from my mouth.
Rank: Either the girls will hate her and she's out right away, or the guys will love her and we're stuck with her for good.
Shane: His profession is listed as "house flipper." Does that mean he removes them from their foundations and twirls them in the air? He likes to work on his muscles, so that's a possibility. He seems like the kind of normal but cocky guy who can make it to the end with the right alliance.
Rank: If he doesn't go home first, he'll make it to the end.
Wil: Yes, with one L. He is the gay this season and he wears a fluorescent green "budgie smuggler," as the Aussies would call it. He says he's not going to tell the housemates his profession even though he's a marketing consultant. What is he going to do, brand them all the way out of the house or something?
Hair: -1 billion points
Rank: The gay never wins.
Willie: The cancer that is the Hantz family continues to spread on CBS. This is the brother of Survivor three-time loser Russell Hantz. His bio is wondrously awful to behold. He describes himself as "serious, hostile and docile," says his favorite things are, "Gambling and strip clubs," and confesses that he lives with his mother. He's so going to be the Evel Dick and just be a jerk to everyone and think that is going to help him win.
Hair: What hair?
Rank: If we've learned anything from the Hantz clan, it's that bad guys never finish first — usually second.
Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan
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Top Story: Broadway Musicals Still Dark
The musical Chicago may be lighting up movie theaters everywhere, but not theaters on Broadway. When Broadway musicians went on strike on Friday, 18 of 19 Broadway musicals were shut down, including Chicago, Hairspray and Mamma Mia!, at a cost of about $1.2 million per performance in lost box office revenue, according to CNN.com. The Associated Press reports that as of Sunday the musicians' union and theater owners' league still hadn't met to iron out their differences over what the minimum size of musical orchestras should be. For information about the ongoing strike, visit www.broadway.com.
Guest Hosts Line Up To Do Letterman
As David Letterman continues to recuperate from a case of shingles, his show The Late Show With David Letterman returns after a weeklong hiatus with a string of guest hosts ready to make sure the show goes on. Variety reports hosts will include Whoopi Goldberg, Vince Vaughn, Elvis Costello and Will Ferrell.
Sizemore Pleads Innocent
Dreamcatcher star Tom Sizemore, known for his gruff military men in films such as Saving Private Ryan and Black Hawk Down, pleaded innocent Friday to punching a woman in the face and throwing her to the ground, Reuters reports. His misdemeanor charges include domestic violence, battery and violating a restraining order. Sizemore claims he does not know the woman who filed charges against him.
Don't Call Durst Stupid
After Limp Bizkit singer Fred Durst was called "illiterate" by some journalists for an antiwar statement he made at the Grammy Awards, it now appears his choice of words was indeed correct, Reuters reports. Durst told the Grammys audience, "I just really hope we're all in agreeance that this war should go away as soon as possible." While "agreeance" isn't normally used, the North American editor of the Oxford English Dictionary confirmed to the New York Observer it is, in fact, a word. Said Durst on his Web site, "The dumb asses at the Orange County Register and everyone else are welcome to intern at Flawless Records until they learn enough about journalism to write for a major daily newspaper."
Pop Star Adam Faith Dies
Reuters reports British pop singer-turned-actor Adam Faith, best known for his 1959 song "What Do You Want" as well as his successful television career in British shows such as Budgie and Love Hurts, died Saturday in London of a massive heart attack. He was 62.
ROLE CALL, Part I: Phoenix, Witherspoon Walk; Welling, Duff Join Dozen
From The Hollywood Reporter: Reese Witherspoon and Joaquin Phoenix will star in Walk the Line, a Johnny Cash biopic with Phoenix as Cash and Witherspoon as his wife June Carter... Smallville's Tom Welling and Lizzie Maguire's Hilary Duff will join Steve Martin and Bonnie Hunt in a remake of Cheaper by the Dozen for 20th Century Fox. The 1950 comedy, starring Clifton Webb and Jeanne Crain, revolved around the Gilbreth family, who had to struggle to keep it together with a brood of 12 children.
ROLE CALL Part II: Stepford Beckons Close, Walken; O'Neal Heads to NBC
From Variety: Glenn Close and Christopher Walken are in negotiations to join Nicole Kidman, John Cusack and Joan Cusack in the Frank Oz-directed remake The Stepford Wives for Paramount Pictures. The studio is also wooing country pop star Faith Hill for a small role. The 1975 original starred Katherine Ross and centered on a small Connecticut town whose liberated female residents are turned into "perfect" mates...Ryan O'Neal will team up with Sex and the City creator Darren Star in the NBC pilot Miss/Match. O'Neal plays the father of Alicia Silverstone, a matrimonial lawyer who doubles as a high-end matchmaker even though her own love life is less than perfect.