'GQ' writer doesn't flip-flop as he opines on men wearing flip-flops



IN THE city, it is only acceptable for a man to wear flip-flops if he has just come from a pedicure and he's still damp. But seriously, folks, flip-flops are for the beach or maybe for washing the car or spaniel. They are not the next big thing. They are the last sad thing on the road to stylistic surrender," writes GQ's Glenn O'Brien.

Royal undies

Now we don't want to be telling the Victoria's Secret folks how to run their amazing business, but it wouldn't hurt if they took some thin, snazzy, young models and put them into Queen Victoria's bloomers.

These non-tighty-whities measure 50 inches across, and as most modern-day waists are about 30 inches, there is room in the queen's undies for two models.

The underwear, which was certainly Queen Victoria's "secret," was recently unearthed from an English family whose forebears had served the queen as maids. Other than the bloomers, there is a nightgown and a chemise with a 60-inch bust. It seems that Queen Victoria became "morbidly obese" during her long reign. These artifacts will be sold at auction, and each item is of very fine cotton and bears the embroidered initials VR.


John Waters is now writing a sequel to his hit Hairspray. It will come to the screen from New Line about 2010. Will John Travolta still be ready for his close-up as Edna Turnblad? ... France's controversial and saucy first lady, Carla Bruni Sarkozy, now says her boasting of having had 30 lovers was just "poetic license." I am so relieved to learn she has only had 15. ... When my friend Martha Frankel titled her memoir Hats & Eyeglasses: A Family Love Affair (with gambling) I advised her that the title was problematical. Now they are changing the title for the paperback. This book is so much fun and it got some of the best reviews of the year. I guess a title isn't everything.


"Hey, everybody is reuniting. Even Nicole and Paris got back together. Why not us?" That's soul legend Lionel Richie, talking about an upcoming reunion with his famous group, the Commodores. (He is dad to tabloid magnet Nicole Richie and has watched nervously as she has struggled with celeb pressure and BFF Paris Hilton.) Lionel is also working on a new solo album, with producer Jimmy Jam.

Lionel looked trim and healthy, dressed head to toe in black, chowing down on a Caesar salad at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Our friend, the gadfly music historian and press rep Hal Lifson - he is now guiding Olympic glamour runner Kara Goucher - asked Lionel about other projects. The singer laughed, "Well, as you know, things have been kinda slow in my business, so luckily I have been picking up some side gigs as a baby sitter!" (For his grandchild, Harlow, by Nicole and Joel Madden.)

Opera couture

When the divine Renee Fleming opens the Metropolitan Opera gala on Sept. 22, she'll be wearing couture by those legends John Galliano, Christian Lacroix and Karl Lagerfeld. Renee will sing three of her most acclaimed roles in fully staged selections from La Traviata, Manon and Capriccio. This is the first time such renowned fashion names have designed for the Met.

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