Mon, May 22, 2006 - Page 13 News List

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The Donald wants a street renamed after him.

PHOTO: AP

Donald Trump has hit a rough spot in his quest to change the name of Ocean Trails Drive, which leads to his US$250-million ocean bluff golf course.

He wants it renamed Trump National Drive.

But some residents are already teed off about the billionaire's impact since The Donald moved in and named his luxury golf retreat Trump National Golf Club Los Angeles.

Some have suggested other names for Ocean Trails Drive, such as "Ego Aisle" or "Narcissism Lane."

"I think Trump is trying to take over everything," Marcos Dela Cruz said. "Ocean Trails is an actual spot. We were hiking there the other day. The name Ocean Trails said it all."

Although Trump's bid would violate city street-naming guidelines, city officials said they were willing to grant the street change if Trump renames his golf course -- substituting Rancho Palos Verdes for Los Angeles.

The 104-hectare oceanfront links should be called Trump National Golf Club Rancho Palos Verdes because it's within the city's boundaries, some 48km south of downtown Los Angeles, city officials said.

"As soon as I see a business card that says Trump National Golf Club Palos Verdes, I'll vote for naming it Trump Drive," Councilman Peter Gardiner said.

Trump said last week that his representatives are still in negotiations with the city over the street name change, and indicated he doesn't plan on being strong-armed by city officials.

"I'm very hard to extort, if they're looking to do that," Trump said.

While Trump wants his name on a street, Czech model Veronica Varekova would rather not be on the cover of this month's Maxim magazine.

Varekova says Maxim unlawfully uses a photograph of her scantily clad on the cover of its June issue.

The photo -- featuring Varekova in stockings, high heels and naked from the waist up -- was taken for a British GQ magazine feature on Victoria's Secret last year. Afterward, photo agency Corbis sold the photos to Maxim.

Varekova says she was never told of the sale, nor was she asked for her permission to do so.

"They put me on the cover without my permission," the model told reporters last week. "They have no right to do it."

Varekova says the photos were fitting for a feature on Victoria's Secret, but "for Maxim, it looks -- to my eyes -- super, super vulgar." Varekova has frequently modeled for Victoria's Secret and Sports Illustrated, and appeared on the cover of the US sports magazine's 2004 swimsuit edition.

Lewis Kay, a spokesman for Maxim, said in an

e-mail: "Corbis approached Maxim about running a fantastic photo shoot of the very popular model Veronica Varekova. We purchased the photos with all necessary rights and published them in our upcoming June issue."

Varekova says she's now examining her legal options and that her lawyer has been in contact with Maxim.

Meanwhile, off-key American Idol washout William Hung is following in the steps of another beauty queen: He's being crowned "Artichoke King" in the small California city that calls itself the "artichoke capital of the world."

Marilyn Monroe was the first "Artichoke Queen" when she was selected in 1947. She was named 12 years before the Castroville Artichoke Festival was conceived.

Hung, 23, the earnest crooner who butchered Ricky Martin's She Bangs tune on the Fox network's talent competition, was to ride in a parade yesterday and perform new versions of the Beach Boys' Surfin' USA and the Billy Ray Cyrus line-dancing anthem Achy Breaky Heart. The festival features an artichoke eating contest, music and plenty of artichokes for sale.

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