Mantenna - Wednesday, December 8

December 8, 2010

Jessica Simpson apparently has a billion dollar clothing empire, Aretha Franklin has pancreatic cancer, and Derek Jeter would like to pay you for a shoulder to cry for the Mantenna!
Ray Tamarra/Getty Images

Who Knew Jessica Simpson Had a Billion Dollar Clothing Empire?

Proving she’s more than just a ditzy blonde, Jessica Simpson has somehow amassed a clothing empire that is set to rake in $1 billion dollars next year. This year, sales of The  Jessica Simpson Collection is expected to totala whopping $750 million, easily making it one of the most successful celebrity clothing lines of all time. For comparison, Kim Kardashian’s clothing company made only $6 million in sales this year. Vince Camuto, founder and CEO of Camuto Group, which is Simpson's licensee, says, “She is the girl next door and has great product that surrounds her. People like her. People look at her as a style icon.” Simpson clothing line is already stocked in 650 department stores across the U.S. and is expected to expand next year when she launches a range of workout clothes. [Washington Post]

HIV-Positive Porn Star Speaks Out

The person at the center of the recent HIV porn scare that shut down the adult industry for nearly a month has outed himself.  Derrick Burts, who goes by the name Derek Chambers in gay porn and Cameron Reid in straight porn, has revealed he was “Patient Zeta” and that he decided to go public in the hopes of making condoms mandatory in pornography. At the time of the scare, the media reported that Burts contracted the disease “through private, personal activity.” The 24-year-old performer says that claim is "completely false” and that the only person he was intimate with in his personal life was his girlfriend. The adult performer says that thankfully his girlfriend did not contract the diesease. Burt says adult performer should think of the consequence of performing “bareback,” saying, “Making $10,000 or $15,000 for porn isn't worth your life. Performers need to be educated.” [LA Times]

Aretha Franklin has Pancreatic Cancer

Source: Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

According to reports, Aretha Franklin is battling pancreatic cancer. A close relative to Franklin has apparently confirmed the sad diagnosis. After being admitted to a hospital in late-October for an undisclosed reason, the Queen of Soul eventually announced that she would be cancelling all of her appearances through May 2011. Franklin underwent surgery for unknown reasons last week and released a statement saying that the procedure was "highly successful." This positive news has obviously turned quite grim with the release of this new information. The pancreatic survival rates are between 5 and 10 percent. Let’s wish Aretha a swift and healthy recovery.! [KTLA]

Derek Jeter Would Like to Pay You for a Shoulder to Cry on

New York Yankees Short Stop Derek Jeter had to ask management to give him more money. He thought they should have simply done it. “I was pretty angry about it, and I let that be known," Jeter said Tuesday after finalizing a $51 million, three-year contract that cut his salary. "I was angry about it because I was the one that said I didn't want to do it. I said I was the one that wasn't going to do it.” It’s the classic “I want you to want to do the dishes” argument, but with a team nobody likes and a player who refuses to get his hands dirty. [CBS]

Random Baseball Player Comes in from the Insane Political Bullpen

Baltimore Orioles designated hitter Luke Scott – for no real reason – decided to offer up his political opinions during baseball’s recent winter meetings. They weren’t interesting, provoked or on point, but they did immediately make him a fan favorite amongst Republican baseball fans. “Obama … hmm … Obama does not represent America. Nor does he represent anything what our forefathers stood for … He was not born here. That’s my belief. I was born here. If someone accuses me of not being born here, I can go — within 10 minutes — to my filing cabinet and I can pick up my real birth certificate and I can go, “See? Look! Here it is.” [Hardball Talk]

Check out previous installments of Mantenna:

Tuesday, December 7

Monday, December 6

Friday, December 3

Thursday, December 2

Wednesday, December 1

...or see the rest of the archive!