Susannah Meadows

Periscope

McCAIN An Old Soldier Fights a New Battle In the 24 hours after Sen. John McCain announced he'd had a recurrence of skin cancer, worried admirers sent about 1,000 e-mails to his political-action committee alone.

Only One Plausible Explanation...

The National Transportation Safety Board is eager to close its investigation of last fall's crash of EgyptAir Flight 990. But to the exasperation of U.S. officials, the Egyptians still refuse to accept the American interpretation of the evidence.The NTSB last week released 1,700 pages of documents, including a transcript of the plane's cockpit recorder and a sheaf of FBI interviews that NTSB officials believe are consistent with only one plausible theory, first reported by NEWSWEEK last year:...

Periscope

Republicans drove down dead ends in their efforts to dig up info on Al Gore's potential running mates. According to archivists at Bowdoin College in Maine and Florida's official archives, there was a surge of interest in George Mitchell and Sen.

'The Bible Says, &Quot;Judge Not, Lest Ye Be Judg

It's easy to forgive Tammy Faye Bakker Messner. But don't expect to forget her. Not since the documentary "The Eyes of Tammy Faye" opened last week. Narrated by an admiring RuPaul Charles, the campy, sympathetic film recalls Jessica Hahn (replete with clips of the TV movie "Fall From Grace" starring Kevin Spacey as Jim Bakker), Tammy's early embrace of gay men and our heroine's continuing purgatory, which includes addictions to Diet Coke and L'Oreal Lash Out mascara.

Periscope

The final hours of George W. Bush's search for a running mate produced high drama, bruised egos and an unprecedented situation: the man in charge of veep vetting--former Defense secretary Dick Cheney--had himself become a lead contender for the job.Last Thursday Cheney's staff called the finalists to brief them on what they needed to do: stay close to a land line--not a mobile phone--on Sunday night to await a call from Bush, and be available to travel all day Monday.

Name Games

George w. Bush plans to announce his running mate seven to 10 days before the July 31 GOP convention, but he might not show all of his cards. Though one faction in the Bush camp wants him to name portions of his cabinet in advance--Colin Powell has hinted he would accept Secretary of State; John McCain has not ruled out Defense--Bush is leaning away from the strategy, according to a top aide.

An Old Spy's Literary War

A new book about the inner workings of the CIA, by "Bob," a 21-year agency veteran, has the nation's spy center in a state of alert. Already the CIA, which must approve all books written by former employees, has cut two chapters of Bob's "The Last Warrior." And if the agency gets its way, it will excise more of his explosive stories, which include the former agent's claim that he conspired with a congressional aide to halt the nomination of former National Security Advisor Tony Lake to be CIA...

Alley Esthetic

Stylemakers taking cues from the bowling world? Sounds improbable, but it's happened--again. First, the bags were hot. Now, the shoes. A cadre of footwear specialists appear to have gone bowling for inspiration.

The Harry Potter Effect

Never underestimate magic: this wizard has reached beyond imagination into Wall Street and the book industry, feeding publishing house Scholastic's morale and sales of other books.

Take The Money

If you found a wallet, what would you do with it? That's what men's accessory designer Andy Spade wanted to find out. So he "lost" 100 of his Jack Spade label billfolds around New York City--each with an "if found, please call" card, a couple of bucks and a few items to characterize an "owner." "It's your life in there," says Spade. "I thought we'd get a 60 percent return." He got 34 back.

The Hill: New Trouble For Colombia?

President Clinton's controversial plan for a $1.7 billion aid package for Colombia could face new problems. Administration officials and top Republicans on Capitol Hill worry that Colombian President Andres Pastrana, whom Clinton has warmly embraced as a partner in the war against drugs, could be weakened by a nasty corruption scandal.A Colombian criminal investigation has turned up evidence that some of Pastrana's closest associates in his 1998 presidential campaign may have maintained a phony...

Record Industry

In a fit of both cleanliness and marketing genius, Lever 2000 Pure Rain Body Wash has attempted to set the Guinness World Record for biggest shower. But making it into the book is not as simple as building an 80-feet-by-8-feet stall.

On The Trail Of The Trash

Who offered cash for Microsoft's trash? As the tale unfolded last week, it seems that a mysterious company called Upstream Technologies recently rented space next to the D.C. offices of the Association for Competitive Technologies, a Microsoft-backed lobbying group.

A Coincidence? We Think Not.

It's the little-known, rarely observed fourth law of motion: two game shows, on the same night, will bend toward each other and ultimately collide. How else to explain the unlikely overlap last Tuesday on "Jeopardy!" and "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire"?

Soft Money, Hardball Tactics

Campaign 2000's TV ad wars are heating up. Despite Al Gore's earlier proposal to ban the unrestricted use of soft-money-financed commercials, the Democrats last week launched a new ad blitz promoting the veep's prescription-drug proposal.

It's Not About Heather Graham?

The Guess Who's 1970 hit "American Woman" is in Gatorade, Castrol and Tommy Hilfiger ads; "American Beauty," and "Austin Powers." PERI checked in with band members Randy Bachman and Burton Cummings for their thoughts on the revival.

Keep Your Shirt On

This year's tour of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band brought the love affair between the star and his believers to a new pitch: he sang their obscure favorites, and they helped him set three new records.

The Rights Stuff

The Patient's Bill of Rights may have died last week on the Senate floor, but the rights business is still going strong. Other groups' self-proclaimed Bills of Rights:Airline Passengers Bill: Pro: Compensates passengers for waiting more than two hours on the runway Con: Paying for itStudent's Math Anxiety Bill: Pro: The right to relax Con: FlunkingA Cat's Bill of Rights: Pro: "Dire need must be proven in order to immerse me in water" Con: Smelly catsLibrary Bill of Rights: Pro: Books should be...

Eyes On The Pies

How many more people have to get a face full of custard before it's time for a 48-hour waiting period on all pie purchases? Ask USDA Secretary Dan Glickman, who joined the sad parade of victims last week.Victim: Bill Gates (Feb. 4, 1998) Flavor: cream Assailant: L'Entarteur Why: 'cuz Gates is richVictim: S.F.

Colt Takes Another Hit

America's oldest and most troubled gunmaker is getting shelled again--this time by the U.S. military. Reeling from lawsuits and struggling to pay suppliers, Colt learned last week that it had lost its critical role making M-16 rifles for U.S. soldiers.

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