"I KNOW MOST of the police officers in town," said comedian Wanda Sykes, loving the simple life of Media.
"Not because I've been arrested," she clarified, "but because it's a small town."
Sykes, who is performing at the Borgata on Friday and Saturday ("I'm always excited for Atlantic City," Sykes said. "The audience comes to have a good time. They're there, they're happy there and they're little bit drunk."), splits her time between L.A. and Delaware County.
Sharing Sykes' bicoastal lifestyle is her wife and their two children, who often come up in her act. Sykes said she likes her dual life of living in a sprawling urban center like L.A. and the quieter environs of Media. She likes a little bit of both, and this way she gets it.
That desire for freedom of choice pervades Sykes' career choices. That's why, when her name was bandied about to replace Jimmy Fallon as the host of "Late Night," Sykes bristled at the thought.
"Oh, Lord. It's flattering that my name pops up, but I love having the freedom to go to do a movie, to go do TV," said Sykes, who hosted a short-lived Saturday-night talk show on Fox. "Once a week, that was hard, but every night? That's like having a real job."
Brent Celek called his new Old City restaurant Prime Stache (110 Chestnut St.), a pun on moustaches, but the Eagles tight end has a shameful secret: "The problem is: I can't grow a moustache. I have to wait a couple years, until I get older."
Prime Stache serves strictly American, all the way down to the ingredients. Celek's chef is Hee "Chino" Chang, a contestant from season nine of Fox's "Hell's Kitchen."
Chang and Celek became acquainted when Celek would superstitiously eat at Redstone Grill, where Chang was the chef, the Friday before every game. His meal of choice? The rotisserie chicken. Celek said he's still superstitious, but might switch it up to the meatloaf this season.
Prime Stache isn't Celek's first foray in the biz. He opened 879 Lounge with teammate Todd Herremans, but shuttered the club last year because he wasn't happy with the management.
* Herremans is keeping busy without 879 Lounge. The offensive tackle, who just donated $5,000 to Magee Rehabilatation Hospital, traveled up to New York on Monday for the premiere of "Once Upon a Time in Brooklyn." The movie, associate produced by local Dennis Shea, features Ice T, Vincent Pastore of "The Sopranos" and a host of athletes including Philly guy/New Orleans Saint Jahri Evans.
WIP/KYW Newsradio's Spike Eskin (son of Howard) proposed to gal pal Valerie in the photo booth at North Bowl. "I thought it would be a fun way to capture the moment. Of course, the second picture she looks stunned, and the third and fourth are her head buried in her hands freaking out while I laugh and talk to her," Eskin told me. "It turned out very well. She was actually so stunned she took the ring and put it on her own finger without saying yes. She doesn't remember any of it."
Benj Pasek, who grew up in Ardmore, had a really good day yesterday. The 2003 Friends Central grad is nominated for a Tony, along with writing partner Justin Paul, for Best Original Score for their work on "A Christmas Story," the musical adaptation of the beloved holiday flick. "A Christmas Story" was also nominated for Best Book and Best Musical.
"It's the craziest day of my life. I've never gotten more text messages in my life. It's so overwhelming," Pasek told me.
The awards take place June 9.
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