For years football star John Elway and wife Janet have been the "toast of Colorado." Now, according to the Denver Post, after nearly two decades of marriage the photogenic pair is breaking up. Last week Janet reportedly moved out of the couple's $2 million dollar Cherry Hills Farm home into a rental property nearby. She took their four children with her. The publication says the separation is just that, a "separation," not a divorce. Mrs. Elway told members of the media that although the children -- ages 11 through 16 -- will be spending most of their time with her, she purposely moved close to her old digs so John could see them a lot. Mrs. Elway, 41, is quoted as saying that maybe a "break from marriage" would be good for both of them.
WILL PRINCE CHARLES TIE THE KNOT SOON?
If the current spate of rumors has any basis in fact, Prince Charles may soon announce his plans to wed Camilla Parker Bowles. Gossip columnist Cindy Adams -- who has been quoted by nearly every media outlet for her statement that she is certain that Sir Paul McCartney's upcoming wedding will be in an Irish castle -- says she's learned that the possible royal wedding could come as early as this summer. She points out that the Queen's attitude about Bowles must have softened; witness her proximity to the "King in waiting" in the royal box at the Queen's Jubilee Concert. Meanwhile nothing official from Buckingham Palace, where they may still be busy filling out insurance papers in the wake of the recent attic fire.
LIKE FATHER, LIKE DAUGHTER
It's been a while since second-generation country star Pam Tillis first had her name in lights. But since her first foray into the national country scene in 1991, fans have repeatedly asked her when she was going to do a CD of her dad's songs. Well, according to Country Music Times, 13 of Mel's songs have been recorded by daughter Pam for a new project called "It's All Relative." The younger Tillis has had the songs arranged in her own style and not all of them are well-known Mel melodies. The final recording session was completed this week. Pam tells the news provider that she's so excited she could burst. Now comes what's called post-production -- sweetening, remixing, fixing, polishing. The CD should hit music store shelves in late August.
MICKEY SAYS NEW SAFETY RULES AREN'T GOOFY
In the wake of some highly publicized accidents and other incidents at the Disney theme parks, the late Walt's company has just issued a comprehensive plan that it says will beef up security and prevent future problems. The Orlando Sentinel is reporting that company experts have worked up a full-scale plan dealing with everything from crowd control to terrorism prevention to the intricate workings of many of the rides. One theme park expert, Tim O'Brien, a senior editor for Amusement Business magazine, tells the publication that Disney's willingness to even discuss its plans signals a "new openness" from the company. Meanwhile, it's not the old days at the parks. Morale could be better among employees, especially at the Anaheim venue where equipment problems and scheduling concerns have made many workers wish out loud that Walt were still alive. And, there are increasing differences in the management styles at the two parks. Disneyworld in Orlando went whole hog (or is that mouse) in celebrating Walt Disney's recent 100th birthday. At his original park, the celebration went nearly unnoticed.
STARS CHIP IN FOR NYC FUNDRAISER
When a local Knights of Columbus council in Manhattan announced it wanted to hold a fundraiser recently to help more than a dozen families of firefighters from Engine Co. 54 who lost their lives on Sept. 11, a lot of well-known people pitched in. The head of the De Soto Council 327 tells Columbia magazine that the first to help was local restaurateur Paul Barbey. He allowed the group to use his banquet facilities for the event. Then calls went out for donations. Hockey superstar Mark Messier sent along memorabilia for auction. Then mementos arrived from Brian Leetch and Mike Richter of the Rangers. Broadway star Valerie Harper heard about the fundraiser and chipped in some auctionable items. Then Michelle Lee showed up with cash in hand. The event raised more than $17,000. Grand Knight Gerald Hayde divided the take and took checks to 15 grateful families.
MARTHA'S VINEYARD FAILS TO CLEAR THE AIR
It was just a year ago that the posh Massachusetts island of Martha's Vineyard passed a California-style ordinance making smoking verboten in bars and taverns. Now, according to the Boston Globe, the ban has been reversed. Not because tavern owners "went Hindenburg," claiming that life as we know it was coming to an end -- as many did in the Golden State. It seems that the reason is that the smokers took their milieu outside with them, littering sidewalks and yards near bars with a blizzard of cigarette butts and fouling the pristine New England air. For many non-smokers, bans on smoking in bars and taverns mean that for the first time in their lives they can go have a drink without getting sick. But, with all of that has come a situation where you often need to go inside to get a breath of fresh air. Additionally, many non-smokers are now unable to eat at outdoor restaurants because of the smoke outside.
UPI DAILY SURVEY QUESTION NO. 349
Today we dip into the mailbox for our question: "What ritual, if any, do you use to get to sleep?" Put SLEEP in the subject line and send to firstname.lastname@example.org via the Internet.
RESULTS OF QUESTION NO. 344 (MEALS)
Last week we asked how much of the time you spend in restaurants. Here, from a random check of incoming mail, are some of the responses: Among those who seem to spend a lot of time at fast food places is our friend RTM. He says he got tired of brown bagging it and now eats at a nearby food court. He also usually picks up breakfast at a bagel shop on the way to work. His response is more common than I expected. Nearly 25 percent of those canvassed noted that they often eat both breakfast and lunch, Monday through Friday, away from the house. Denise says that she never eats at home. She says that she uses her stovetop for mail, magazines, purse and car keys. And loubabe also never eats at home. Kathy B said she didn't realize how many meals were being eaten out until the family gave up restaurant food for Lent. Peggy is among those who eat out seldom, "maybe once or twice a month." I was surprised at the number of people who say they only eat one meal a day. Personally, I begin a slow weight-loss diet next week. One goal is to eat fewer restaurant meals and do more walking. I'll keep you posted. TOMORROW: Some bittersweet moments. GBA.