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June 18, 2008

To quote a favorite band of C's owner Wyc Grousbeck, it's been a long time, been a long time, been a long lonely, lonely, lonely, lonely, lonely time since the Celtics won an NBA title. Last night, finally, the 22-year drought ended, and the Boston sports team with the winningest tradition returned to the top. Reveling in the C's Game 6 spanking of the Lakers were a bunch of bigwigs, and we're not talking about botoxed B-movie actors like Tom Arnold. (Maybe next year, Tom.) Wyc celebrated with his parents Irv and Sukey Grousbeck. High-fiving fans also included more than a few Patriots: team president Jonathan Kraft, coach Bill Belichick (with girlfriend Linda Holliday), and players Vince Wilfork, Wes Welker, Matt Cassel, Larry Izzo, Adalius Thomas, and Ben Watson. The BoSox brain trust was also in the house, with John Henry and Tom Werner sitting courtside, and Theo Epstein looking on from a suite. Bruins owner and C's landlord Jeremy Jacobs witnessed the series winner, as did B's Zdeno Chara and Shawn Thornton. Aerosmith's Steven Tyler was on hand with girlfriend Erin Brady and fellow bandmate Joey Kramer. Also in the crowd were New Kids Donnie Wahlberg and Joey McIntyre, Dropkick Murphy Ken Casey, and super producer James "Jimmy Jam" Harris. Jack Nicholson was rumored to be making the trip east. Leonardo DiCaprio kept a low profile in a suite. "Grey's Anatomy" actress Ellen Pompeo had floor seats near filmmakers Bobby and Peter Farrelly. C's alums were led by Bill Russell, John Havlicek, Jo Jo White, M.L. Carr, K.C. Jones, Tommy Heinsohn, Satch Sanders, and Cedric Maxwell. Current NBA stars included Dwyane Wade, Ron Artest, and BC grad Jared Dudley. Rockport native Paula Cole sang the national anthem. Others with tickets included club owner Ed Kane, State Room sultan Jim Apteker, "Cheers" owner Tom Kershaw, Boston Concessions CEO Joe O'Donnell, Bank of America's Chad Gifford, SBLI's Bob Sheridan, Fenway Recordings's Mark Kates, band manager Michael Creamer, Reebok's Paul Foster, chef Todd English, Suffolk Construction's John Fish, New York Jet Kerry Rhodes, Harrah's CEO Gary Loveman, and flack George Regan. Said Wahlberg at game's end: "Woohoo! That's my quote. Woohoo."

Romney buys beachfront estate in California
West Coast Republicans are wondering what Mitt Romney is up to. A party type we talked to out in LA was mighty intrigued by Romney's recent real-estate purchase. The former Massachusetts governor, who's been mentioned as a possible running mate for John McCain, just dropped a bundle of dough - $12 million, to be exact - on a three-bedroom, five-bath beachfront estate in La Jolla, Calif. First reported by the San Diego Union-Tribune, the house has some Golden State gadflies wondering if Romney is interested in succeeding Arnold Schwarzenegger when the Governator leaves office in 2010. According to property records, the Mediterranean-style house is 3,009 square feet and includes a two-car garage, a lap pool and spa, a deck with views of the ocean, and private steps leading to the beach. The LA-based blog The Real Estalker reports that Romney's spread is adjacent to Cliff Roberston's old house, which was just bought by John and Victoria Miller for $16.5 million. The Millers were finance chairs of Romney's presidential bid. The Romneys also own places in Belmont, Utah, and New Hampshire.

ESPN apology
The success of Boston sports teams is just too much for some people to stomach. Consider the case of ESPN .com's Jemele Hill, who wrote over the weekend that "rooting for the Celtics is like saying Hitler was a victim." The offensive statement was later edited out, and ESPN execs issued an apology: "The column, as originally posted, made some absolutely unacceptable comparisons. We've spoken with Jemele, and she understands that she exercised poor judgment." Just as ridiculous is the sour-grapes griping of Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Bob Ford, who was dismayed to see so many BoSox fans in Philly. He describes the members of Red Sox Nation as "cloying, self-important, pompous, overly loud, and regrettably ever-present." Add proud of it.

Locals acting up
Bostonians channeled their inner actor during yesterday's Bloomsday celebration at BC. The event, hosted by former WBZ-TV arts reporter Joyce Kulhawik, featured several prominent folks reading passages from James Joyce's "Ulysses," which was set in the Old Sod on June 16, 1904. Attendees included WCVB-TV "Chronicle" reporter Ted Reinstein, WBUR host Robin Young, 'GBH host Brian O'Donovan, Tip's son Tom O'Neill, and actor Annette Miller. "I'm not sure James Joyce would have been proud," said NECN prez Charlie Kravetz, "but we sure had a lot of fun."

English dishes up Emmys
Culinary king Todd English (above) was a presenter at the recent Daytime Emmy Awards, where he handed out hardware in three categories, including directing, writing, and casting director. Odd couple Alex Trebek and Jack Hannah introduced the Olives chef, who in turn introduced "Sesame Street" mainstay Elmo.

Modeling advice for Brady? She'll pass.
Gisele Bundchen nearly bares all in the new issue of GQ, but manages to say almost nothing. Clad only in a pair of Calvin Klein undies and a T-shirt, Tom Brady's supermodel sweetheart reveals that she and the star QB were introduced by a mutual friend, and are not engaged. "I think we have a lot of things in common, and I think he is a really great person," says Bundchen. "He really, genuinely doesn't have a bad bone in his body. And he is a very positive person." Asked if Brady was bummed to lose the Super Bowl, she replies: "All I have to say about that is that I was really proud of him. Winning eighteen games in a season, I think it's amazing. I mean, I'm talking for myself. I can't talk for him, okay?" Bundchen also won't bite when asked about any modeling advice she may have given Brady. "Oh, my God," she says. "I want you to tell your editor that that's a very stupid question. It's private. And - nah."

A cut above
Several Gillette employees got a haircut for a good cause the other day. The women happily took a few inches off the top for Locks of Love, the nonprofit that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged kids in the United States and Canada who are suffering from long-term hair loss as a result of a medical condition. Taking part in the collective cut at William George's James Joseph Salon were (from left) Anneli Finn, Megan Johnson, Amelia Landers, 4-year-old Siena Potorski, Heidi Felago, and Annie Oh.

Names can be reached at names@globe.com or at 617-929-8253.

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