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I Walk the Bottom Line

An upcoming sale in the growing celebrity memorabilia business will be “the first published piece of artwork” painted by country singer Johnny Cash.

Odyssey Group in Corona is advertising the sale of 40 limited edition copies of Cash’s painting for $800 each.

Called “Flight,” the painting is described as “representing feelings of freedom, spirituality and other emotions” and “a further outbirth of Cash’s legendary creative artistry.”

For those looking for something different, a Georgia company is selling for $79 a signed list of 25 favorite “holy” expressions of Burt Ward, who was known for those phrases when he played Robin on the 1960s television series “Batman.”

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Some of them include “holy hamburger,” “holy popcorn,” “holy ice skates” and “holy dead end.”

Healthy Business

Just off the presses is the Natural Resource Directory of Greater Los Angeles and Orange County, a New Age-style guide touted as “the healthy yellow pages.”

Published by Natural Resources Inc. in Marina del Rey, and printed in soy ink, the book contains a wealth of ads for Southland businesses.

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Among them:

* Holistic Animal Health Care in Sherman Oaks. Its motto: “You are the essential factor of your animal companion’s health and happiness. Everything else is just details.”

* A holistic dentist in Los Angeles whose motto is: “The only mercury we have in our office is outside (in the thermometer!).”

* A Montana company that offers a Biolectric Shield worn to protect people from “electromagnetic radiation and other people’s energy.”

* Then there’s the one from the troubled subway builder, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. It says the agency is “constantly exploring ways to conserve energy and help our environment.”

Just Your Ordinary Rich Guy

NBC, which recently went into business with Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates in a joint venture, is now out in the international TV marketplace offering its recent one-hour special on Gates.

The program, hosted by anchor Tom Brokaw, is a rare TV portrait of Gates, whose estimated net worth of more than $9 billion makes him America’s richest individual.

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The NBC sales pitch on the show: “What we do know is--he’s rich--the richest man in the country. . . .”

Dubious Award

Who is to blame for the proliferation of award shows on television?

Viacom Inc. can take a good portion of it. In its just-published Viacomments newsletter to employees, the entertainment giant boasts of four recent award shows and goes so far as to suggest that it “should win the award for the best artist in the Award Show category.”

The company highlights its MTV Movie Awards, the Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards, the Blockbuster Entertainment Awards and the VH1 Honors. That doesn’t even include MTV’s regular music awards, later this year.


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