A Blog of His Own

One analyst indulges his gonzo side

Every news outlet in Houston, it seems, has someone blogging the Enron trial.

The Houston Chronicle, which seems to believe the future of newspapers lies in creating a blog about every single subject known to humankind, has two to choose from, with business columnist Loren Steffy also occasionally chiming in. (We can only hope this doesn't take away readers from the paper's blogs about owning guns, being a single gal or scrapbooking.)

KTRK has defense attorney Joel Androphy, who offers a sober analysis complete with a lengthy scoreboard, currently showing the prosecution to be ahead. KHOU has law professor Gerald Treece, who limits himself to answering readers' question, dully. (How to see the trial? "You need to get there early...I suggest you wait a week or so, the interest will fade and you should be able to attend. I appreciate your interest in our nation's justice system.")

And then there's KPRC, where criminal attorney Brian Wice is letting loose his inner Hunter S. Thompson.

Wice regularly appears as a trial analyst on cable networks, and he's a regular Dennis Miller when it comes to pithiness.

On the skills of the cameraman shooting the closed-circuit video feed: "a schlepper (Yiddish for 'journeyman') who would be hard-pressed to get a gig as a shooter at a TV station in Market 190."

On what he calls "the whistling s's" of witness Andrew Fastow and Mike Ramsey, Ken Lay's lawyer: "[T]hey both insist on using the all-too-sibilant 'sir,' [and] their high-pitched colloquies are once again waking up long-dormant forms of wildlife in Katy."

On Ramsey's chances for success: "There are certain immutable rules in the criminal justice system...the too-much-dope and too-many-stab-wounds are but two, and Ramsey knows this case comes within a coat of paint of flunking the too-much-money-lost-to-too-many-old-folks rule."

Wice says he told his Channel 2 bosses they wouldn't be getting the usual stuff. "Some of the other blogs are a little too 'inside baseball,' with too much legalese that makes folks' eyes glaze over [or] some tired-ass 'scorecard' of which side is 'winning,' " he says. "[Channel 2] has been more than gracious when it comes to letting me push the envelope. They've even let me mention Desperate Housewives."

Yeah, but what's up with Yiddish?

"I believe that Yiddish is the new Japanese, a language that everyone will absolutely have to master if they want to be on the cutting edge of culture in the 21st century," he says.

Somehow, Wice has not yet used the blog to advertise the fact that he's single. The chances of getting through the whole trial without mentioning it: about as likely as Lay and Sherron Watkins going antiquing together soon.

Sense of Fashion

The phone hasn't stopped ringing since Houston learned this month that local designer Chloe Dao won the competition of Project Runway. Her Rice Village store, Lot 8, has been packed with shoppers, well-wishers and autograph hounds.

Dao – apparently considered a long shot to win – receives, among other things, $100,000 to start a clothing line and a Saturn roadster to replace her ten-year-old Toyota Corolla.

To be blunt, we'd rather watch Liberace's Old-Tyme Drag Queen Hour than tune in to Project Runway, so we may not be the best choice to interview the bubbly 34-year-old Dao. But we gave it a shot:

Q.Have you gotten your new car yet?

A.No, not yet – they say it'll be two to three weeks.

Q. You know, the store's been doing great, according to stories, so why don't you have your own new car, anyway? You're still driving a clunker.

A.Oh, I know, I know. But that's all right – I can wait.

Q.And you're going to stay in Houston and do your internship by phone? That's got to be one easy internship.

A.It's actually a mentorship. I don't know exactly what it entails, but I'm guessing it will be meetings and discussions, so it'll be easy to do by phone. If I have questions, there'll be someone I can call – that kind of thing.

Q. I haven't been in your store, but someone who has says there's nothing in there but size two and smaller.

A. Oh, no, that's not true.

Q.You have dresses for big women?

A. We carry up to size ten to 12, and we probably will carry even larger sizes in the future. We didn't have the clientele for them before, but now we're starting to get them. So you have to be smart, and not order something that you have no clientele for.

Q. Size ten, is that big?

A.Well, actually that's a reasonable size, a real woman's size. I'm petite and I wear size two, four or six. Depending on who the designer is.

Q. That's what kills me – these numbers don't mean anything. There's no consistency.

A. I know, I know. But that's the beauty – you can be any size. With Donna Karan I'm a two. With Banana Republic I'm a six.

Q. But that doesn't make any sense.

A.It's really about the style. People shouldn't care about the size.

 
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