Comedian Kevin Burke, best known for his one-man show “Defending the Caveman,” stole the show during his stand-in role as emcee of the Jimmie Johnson charity roast on Wednesday.
Burke was a huge hit with the audience, but the roasters went away grousing they got it worse than the roastee.
“Carl Edwards just called me a son-of-a-bitch,” Burke told me minutes after filling in for Carrot Top at the Chasers for Charity Fanfest in the Neon Garage area of Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Edwards may have been kidding, or maybe not — not after Burke described the toothy NASCAR driver as “the love child of Arnold Schwarzenegger and John Elway” and also teased him about his risque photo shoot for ESPN The Magazine.
The Excalibur headliner reminded Edwards, “Here lap traffic means something altogether different.”
No one escaped Burke’s bruising zingers, not even Tiger Woods, who undoubtedly heard worse in the last week.
Burke, in introducing cantankerous driver Tony Stewart, said three things in Las Vegas might run forever: “Cirque du Soleil, Blue Man Group and Tony Stewart’s mouth.”
Burke introduced former champ Greg Biffle as “Al Gore without the charisma.”
The NASCAR drivers are in town for awards week, which was moved here after years in New York City.
Carrot Top, the Luxor headliner, had to back out because of the death of his grandmother.
‘WE FEEL VINDICATED’
Las Vegas resident Ashley Hollingsworth Samson, the whistle-blower who triggered the Tiger Woods scandal, passed “rigorous” polygraph tests and her information “has been 100 percent accurate,” according to National Enquirer editor Barry Levine.
“We feel vindicated,” Levine said, “in the sense that Tiger issued a statement today” admitting to “transgressions” that “let my family down.”
Hollingsworth Samson was “extremely credible” and has been “hurt greatly” by public reaction and comments from former Las Vegas VIP host Rachel Uchitel, Levine said.
Life and Style magazine Wednesday reported that Kalika Moquin, a marketing executive for The Bank nightclub at Bellagio, also was involved with Woods. Moquin, who moved from Montana about six years ago, told the magazine, “It’s not appropriate for me to comment one way or the other. At this time, I’m just choosing to focus on my job.”
Barry Manilow said his new two-year show at Paris Las Vegas will incorporate “the most romantic city in the world”– Paris, France — with songs from his album of the greatest love songs of all time.
“I thought that would be a really good thread. It’s going to be all about love and heartfelt music,” said Manilow, who opens in March.
Manilow, who announced his move to the Paris from the Hilton on Tuesday, said he suffered a serious case of burnout in Las Vegas after hitting it big.
His first gig in Las Vegas came in 1973 as Bette Midler‘s piano player at the Sahara when she was opening for Johnny Carson.
“When ‘Mandy’ hit and changed my life, I was the opening act for Helen Reddy at the MGM Grand. After ‘I Write the Songs,’ I was at the MGM doing two shows a night for two weeks. … I vowed at that point I’d never do that again.”
Cher, celebrating Tuesday at Pure (Caesars Palace) after her 100th show. The cake, which featured Bob Mackey designs on the bottom, was made by Dane Bethea of Simple Elegance, 3655 S. South Durango.
THE PUNCH LINE
“Speaking from West Point in New York, the president announced that he will send 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan over the next six months, and 2,000 additional troops to Tiger Woods’ mansion. You know, peacekeeping forces.” — Jimmy Kimmel
Norm Clarke can be reached at (702) 383-0244 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Find additional sightings and more online at www.normclarke.com.