September 17, 1984 12:00 PM

None of the Washington, D.C. concertgoers quite understood the problem last month when Bruce Springsteen’s voice faltered, then dropped out, while singing his ballad Independence Day. Still strumming, Bruce turned to his band and appeared to ask them a question that they answered with shrugs. The music stopped as the Boss faced the audience again. “I forgot the words,” he announced. Since most fans know every syllable in the rocker’s repertoire, Springsteen walked to the stage edge to consult with them. Still no help. Finally, someone from backstage brought a book containing the elusive line. “Stuff like this ain’t supposed to happen to me,” Bruce humbly apologized before continuing. “I’m supposed to be the Boss.”

Jon-Erik Hexum, who got a lot of publicity last year as Joan Collins’ favorite hunk in the ABC-TV movie The Making of a Male Model, now holds the starring role in an upcoming CBS spy series titled Cover Up. This new show may have changed Hex-urn’s life already, if only in his attitude toward crime. While driving home on a Los Angeles freeway before Labor Day, the actor saw another car suddenly veer within inches of his own. At first, Hexum tried to make the offending vehicle pull over, then chased it into downtown L.A., where the other driver bumped into several parked cars, jumped a curb and stopped. Hexum ran over and grabbed the driver. “The guy was so drunk he didn’t know what was going on,” Jon-Erik reports. “I put him in my car, and he thought I was driving him home.” The motorist obviously didn’t know that he had encountered a TV law en-forcer: Hexum completed his citizen’s arrest by delivering his catch to the cops.

Though she has seen no medical records to prove it, Pia Zadora just knows the baby she’s carrying will be a boy, and she is determined that the kid will meet the world at New York’s Lenox Hill Hospital. “I was born in New York and I want the baby to be born there,” she says. “He’ll have a more stable feeling than he’d have arriving in L.A.” If Pia’s husband, Meshulam Riklis, has his way, a hospital in Bethlehem might be more appropriate. Says Pia, with a laugh, about the efforts of Riklis, a Jew, to adapt to her Catholic background: “We decided to call the baby Christopher and my husband is going to try to get the Pope to baptize him. Rik says the baby will be the next Messiah.”

Because his wife, Carla, is seven months pregnant, Lou Ferrigno needed a way to work out close to his Santa Monica, Calif. home. So he rented some rooms nearby, filled them with $50,000 worth of training equipment, took out a full-page ad in Variety and now personally trains flabby Californians to look like pseudohulks. Lou, currently talking with ABC about a new series, plans to continue as a trainer no matter what happens with his acting career. Since he works one-on-one with five to eight clients a week, there’s a waiting list for his services. Cheapskates go for the bargain deal, $1,000 a month for twice-a-week training. Real fanatics pump up for the deluxe version: unlimited training at $2,000 a month. But—hey!—that includes free limo service to the gym.

Want to know how the big boys of journalism correspond? After the Washington Post ran a negative financial story about the Gannett Company, which owns USA Today, Post Editor Ben Bradlee received a fiery response from Al Neuharth, Gannett’s chairman. In correspondence that appears in this month’s Washingtonian magazine, Neuharth accused the Post of making so many errors that the correction column “threatens to become the most rapidly growing section of your newspaper.” Bradlee wrote back, snidely referring to USA Today’s business coverage as “financial advice to the lovelorn.” He added, “I can’t tell you how much I appreciated your cheap shot about our clarification column. That is class.” Neuharth then sent a mildly apologetic letter, adding, “Ben, the air of arrogance you exhale really is polluting the Post’s reputation.” He signed it, “Love, but no kisses, Al Neuharth.”

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