LAST CALL: Britney, Babs and Bubba sit high on boring celebs list

In his latest attempt to land himself in the news, gadfly publicist

Alan Caruba has released The 18th Annual List of the Most Boring

Celebrities of the Year, a round-up of 10 famous folks who, as he sees

it, have been the recipients of "massive media over-exposure."

However, Caruba, founder of The Boring Institute, seems to define the

term differently than Webster's, as 90% of the "boring" celebs in his

2001 rankings have, in fact, found themselves mixed up in a juicy news

story during the past 11 months. "These are people who have had horrible

PR problems, and gotten even worse advice," he "clarifies."

PRWeek noticed that at least half of this year's picks (Hillary and Bill

Clinton, Barbra Streisand, and Rev. Jesse Jackson, who nosed Gary Condit

into second place for top dishonors) are prominent Democrats, but Caruba

says he harbors no hidden political agenda. "That's just the way it

worked out," he said. Instead, he explained, a more general "moral

judgement was brought to bear" as he determined the final rankings.

Britney Spears, for example, seems to have been selected as number five

not only because of her midriff-baring ways, but also on the prospect of

more risque behavior to come. "I guarantee you that she will follow the

paths of other teen idols," he said. "Pretty soon, her albums will stop

selling, and before you know it, you'll see her on the cover of

Playboy." (Sadly, Caruba could think of no such examples. "You got me,"

he confessed.)

Caruba boasted that "the list this year has gotten nothing but universal

acclaim - at least in terms of talk radio." Our eyes are peeled, then,

for the chance that his rankings might win him a slot on someone else's

boring list. That's "boring" by his own definition, naturally.

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