It looks as if the crumbling Tower Press building on Superior Avenue will finally get rehabilitated, thanks to a loan approved last week by Cleveland City Council. Still in denial, however, are its occasional, unofficial tenants, a tatterdemalion team of homeless activists who christened the 93-year-old building "Rosewater," after two gifts -- fresh water and a rose -- they once received nearby. Dave Campbell, the self-declared president of the homeless, says he's heard rumblings of yuppie-inspired renovation before and doesn't believe it will happen. Years on the street, however, have made Campbell an enterprising pragmatist: If he does spot crewmen launching the renovation, "The first thing we're going to do is panhandle them."
The wall comes tumbling down . . . As pleased as city and Health Museum of Cleveland officials are with the newly restored White Mansion, which soon will house the museum's administrative offices, they're more than ready to swing the ax at the outmoded facility next door. A running theme of the remarks made at the mansion's ribbon-cutting ceremony last week consisted of undisguised glee at the thought of razing the wall that insulates the museum from the surrounding neighborhood. Apparently, back when Cleveland was going through its social upheaval of the '50s and '60s, the museum board opted to create a fortress in lieu of moving. The new, open plan includes gardens and connecting walks, but don't expect to enjoy them anytime soon: The existing building will be razed this fall, and it will take 18 months to build a new one. In the interim, the museum will step up its outreach program, meaning the touring company of Juno the Transparent Talking Woman plays a middle school near you this fall.
You wouldn't have known it from any area promotion, but it was the Four Bitchin' Babes -- not the Four Babes -- who played at Cain Park last week. The band's contract gives venues the option of deleting the word "bitchin'" from the moniker. According to Cain Park publicist Ksenia Roshchakovsky, the fact that Cain Park is owned by the City of Cleveland Heights dictates the type of music and the names of bands that are booked. And even though the Four Bitchin' Babes play acoustic folk music, their name had to be abridged for fear of taxpayer retribution. "When the city owns and operates the venue, they have to be sensitive to various people's problems with that word," Roshchakovsky says of "bitchin'." "For example, we probably wouldn't be able to book the Barenaked Ladies." And we guessed correctly that the Butthole Surfers aren't likely to score a Cain Park gig. "I would have to say that the Butthole Surfers would be out," admits Roshchakovsky. "I don't think that they would change their name to the Surfers."
Action! West Wing's Rob Lowe, in town filming the HBO movie Proximity, garnered a tabloid splash for Cleveland -- and Tiffany's Cabaret -- this week. The storyline, detailed in the latest Star, goes something like this: Married star meets waiflike stripper, who gives married star lap dances, which lead to invite back to married star's Ritz-Carlton room. Given Lowe's 1988 sex scandal and his pledges of husbandly devotion in a recent Parade story, Lowe was easy prey for the sex-starved tabloid, who staked out his hotel and kept track of his offscreen whereabouts. Shoulda been at the Rock Hall, Rob.