John Mayer finally addresses Jessica Simpson's memoir
Shortly after the release of Jessica Simpson's memoir, "Open Book," which detailed what the author called her "unhealthy and manipulative" romance with John Mayer, Jess told the New York Times she didn't think John would be "shocked" because "he knows these stories." She was right. John addressed Jessica's book for the first time this week, admitting on the Wednesday, April 1, edition of "WWHL" that he's "heard about" the prominent role he plays in the book. "I've heard some bits," John told Andy Cohen (via Us Weekly). "But as Pee Wee Herman says in 'Pee Wee's Big Adventure' before the movie of his life is about to play out at the end, he's not watching the movie — and the reason he's not watching the movie, he says, 'I don't have to watch it, Dottie, I lived it.' And I think that's prescient here." In the memoir, Jessica looks back on the former couple's on-off relationship and writes she's since realized John was "obsessed" with her "sexually and emotionally," a connection she said called "strong" and said made her feel "seductive" and "powerful, at least physically." But she said John dumped her often and talked about her in "the most degrading terms," alluding to his infamous Playboy interview in which he called her "sexual napalm," among other things. "John loved me when I was shining and he drew inspiration from that light," Jessica wrote. "When he tapped me dry, he looked at me like I was withholding something from him." She also wrote that she developed anxiety and self-confidence issues during the relationship, worrying that she wasn't "smart enough for him." Those feelings, she said, contributed to her developing a secret alcohol addiction. She's since said she quit drinking in November 2017, telling People her husband Eric Johnson "gave up drinking the second I did."
Keep reading for the latest on Ben Affleck and his new romance …
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How serious are Ben Affleck and Ana de Armas?
Ben Affleck's new relationship with his "Deep Water" costar Ana de Armas is still going strong — so strong, in fact, a new report from Us Weekly claims he's open to the idea of adding to his family now that he's found love again. "Ben loves children and loves being a dad," a source reportedly told Us Weekly of the star, who shares three children with his ex, Jennifer Garner. "He would love to have kids with her one day." Ben, 47, is said to have Jennifer's full support in his romance with 31-year-old Ana. "Jen has completely moved on from Ben in a romantic sense," said the Us source. "She considers him a friend, thinks he is a good dad to their children and respects him. She is happy in her own life … and happy for him and his relationship." Ben and Ana were first linked romantically last month when they were spotted traveling in Cuba together.
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Gwyneth Paltrow shares counselor's advice for navigating pandemic lockdown
Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop website isn't only about hawking anatomically scented candles and questionably priced wellness conferences. This week, the star shared a Goop video on YouTube that deals with something many of us can relate to right now — how to navigate family relationships while lockdown. In a candid conversation with counselor Michaela Boehm, Gwyneth asked for feedback about matters ranging from how to help teens feel less cooped up to what might help couples struggling with this new reality. "We're really following all of the strict guidelines. … It's getting it gets like fractious in moments and there's definitely tension within the household …," Gwyneth explained (via E! News), adding that boundaries can be confusing with regard to her marriage as well. The therapist suggested morning family meetings can help, especially if everyone ponies up a fun activity, household chore or other useful way of spending some of the day. She also warned devoted "couples' time" should not get mixed up with "kid's time," "dog time," etc. Asked if it makes sense to "be harder on" family members when it comes to issues around chores or other tensions , Michaela issued a definitive "no." "I think in a crisis situation the first thing is always no harm," she explained. "Meaning the first thing is that everybody stays as OK as they can." When Gwyneth clarified Michaela meant this is "not the time to break up," she agreed. "Not the time to break up not to time the time to have the really heavy-duty conversation certainly not the time to work on the things that are weakest because that's just pouring gasoline on the fire," she said. Finally, the discussion turned to sex — specifically, to the depleted sex drive Gwyneth said some of her friends are experiencing. "The female body, when put under stress, goes into the survival mode. That has to do with reproduction — with existing reproduction, so ovulation, pregnancy, breastfeeding … food and comfort and sweets … are the things that most women are reporting they want to do. They don't want so much pleasure because that feeling of opening to pleasure is of course also opening to all other kinds of emotions," Michaela explained. "Over a couple of weeks, that will actually change by itself because there comes a moment where then the boredom kicks in and the threat level goes down. If we are in this long enough, and then that comes online naturally. But if it doesn't or if it's an issue, then the way to go is engagement with the senses — and not sexual engagement — to ramp it back up. Because engagement with the senses is what brings sensuality up and sensuality begets sexuality." Sensuality, she added, also related to self-care and beauty. "It's tempting to just stay in your PJs all day," she said. "It's not good to do that."
Lil Nas X trolls his fans on April Fool's Day: 'I was never gay'
If it seems like the world was too focused on a certain bit of global crisis news to have any fun with April Fool's Day this year, allow us to let Lil Nas X save the proverbial day. Nas came out as gay on June 30, 2019, after leaving fans plenty of hints to that effect in both his lyrics and social media posts. He then spoke openly in interviews about his determination to be himself and be proud of who he is, in spite of the backlash he knew he'd face in both the hip-hop and country music communities. On Wednesday, April 1, however, the 20-year-old announced the whole thing had been a prank. "I was never gay. I said it to build up fuel for aprils fools day. Ha got you guys," he tweeted (via the New York Post). After rapper Ka5sh replied, joking that Nas was "so brave" for "coming out as straight," the "Old Town Road" rapper quipped, "It's hard but somebody has to take a stand and lead the others[sic] straight people afraid to be themselves." Thirteen minutes after he announced he'd been kidding about being gay, he was over it, though. "Ok," he tweeted, "i'm gay again."
Kim Kardashian West nixes the idea of a fifth child after being on lockdown with four kids
Kim Kardashian West has made at least one major life decision as a result of the coronavirus pandemic: Even with all the childcare resources she can afford, four kids is plenty, thankyouverymuch! Kim checked in with "The View" this week on a call where she talked about how she and Kanye West are entertaining themselves and their children, Psalm, 10 months, and Saint, 4, Chicago, 2, and North, 6, while on lockdown. "Let me say, being at home with four kids," she began (via People). "If I ever thought for a minute that I wanted another one, that is out the door! It's really tough." Kim's also been promoting "The Justice Project," her upcoming Oxygen documentary about criminal justice reform and her work with prisoners. "I want to humanize as many people as possible," she recently told CNN's Van Jones in an interview for Vanity Fair. "I feel like it's like my journey of what I've learned," she said of the doc. One of those lessons, she noted, is that people who make a mistake that lands them in prison when they're can still change, even if the crime they committed was a violent one, something she discovered once she "started to educate myself and visit prisons," she said. Having made a mistake, she explained, "…doesn't mean they are that mistake. I just want people to feel empathy." "Kim Kardashian West: The Justice Project" airs Sunday, April 5.
Cardi B is feeling better after a trip to the ER because of 'bad stomach problems'
After posting about the coronavirus pandemic multiple times in recent weeks, Cardi B found herself sick enough to warrant a trip to the ER. On Wednesday, April 1, the rapper tweeted she'd been experiencing "real bad stomach problems for 4 days," so she "went to the ER last night," according to the Daily News. Though she didn't elaborate — in fact, she deleted the tweet after posting it — she did say that since visiting the ER she's "feeling way better," and was hopeful she'd "feel no more pain" by tomorrow.
Oprah Winfrey has now given $10M to food funds amid the pandemic
As feeding the hungry becomes increasingly difficult around the world amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Oprah Winfrey's quickly becoming a key donor in efforts to support the hungry. On Thursday, April 2, Deadline reported the media mogul committed $1 million to the new America's Food Fund, launched this week by a partnership comprised of Leonardo DiCaprio, Laurene Powell Jobs and Apple, and the Ford Foundation, who had already secured $12 million for the organization. Oprah's latest donation comes after she already sent $9 million to the coffers of other food causes. America's Food Fund is set to benefit Chef Jose Andres' World Central Kitchen and Feeding America. The new initiative will be headed up by CEO Claire Babineaux-Fontenot, whose native Louisiana has developed coronavirus states faster than any other states in the country and as of Thursday, was reporting more than 9,000 cases in a population of just 4.6 million.
Michelle Obama urges fans, followers to thank first responders
For those of us don't have Oprah's $10 million to spare for a food bank donation or Kylie Jenner's ability to manufacture hand sanitizer for hospitals, Michelle Obama reminded us there are other, more personal ways to help support the people on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis just as much. "If you're feeling as grateful to––and in awe of––our first responders as I am, now is the time to let them know," the former FLOTUS tweeted on Wednesday, March 31. "A handwritten letter, a social media post, or a simple 'thank you' text can go a long way in showing our appreciation for these heroes among us."
Harry Connick Jr., Wynton and Branford Marsalis honor late jazz patriarch Ellis Marsalis, 85
Legendary jazz pianist, composer, educator, and patriarch Ellis Marsalis, 85, died of complications from COVID-19 in New Orleans on Wednesday, April 1, his son, saxophonist Branford Marsalis confirmed to EW. As news of the NEA Jazz Master's death circulated, so, too, did tributes from musicians around the world, many of whom said they owe everything they know about music to the late icon. Harry Connick , Jr. — who founded the Musician's Village in New Orleans with Ellis and Branford after Hurricane Katrina — was among them. "My heart is heavy today," he wrote on Instagram "Among the countless lessons ellis marsalis taught me, the most important was the process of discovery. he already knew everything i was trying to learn; but he always made me figure things out for myself. he was a grand master educator, an inimitable pianist, a caring mentor and a dear friend. i wouldn't be who i am without him. i'll miss him with all my heart. my prayers are with the marsalis family today. i love you so much, mr. marsalis." In his statement to EW, Branford said his father "was a giant of a musician and teacher, but an even greater father. He poured everything he had into making us the best of what we could be." Branford's brother, Wynton Marsalis, tweeted, "Ellis Marsalis, 1934 – 2020. He went out the way he lived: embracing reality."
Rob Lowe's son John celebrates two years of sobriety
Wednesday, April 1, marked a major milestone for Rob Lowe's son, John Lowe, who celebrated two years of sobriety. The 25-year-old posted about the occasion on Instagram, sharing a photo of himself scowling while chugging a bottle of wine in the back of a car on one side of the screen and, on the other, an image that showed his AA stats: Two years sober, 24 months, 732 days, 17,555 hours. In the caption, John wrote, "Then -> Now." He then explained that after keeping his sobriety journey off social media for two years, he "had a change of heart" because of the anniversary, which made him "more grateful than ever to have a community of support and friends who continue to build me up and hold me accountable." He went on to say that while he knows it's "difficult" to change addiction patterns, he hopes he can "be a small example that it is possible and that things really do get SO MUCH BETTER" when those changes are made. He acknowledged the pandemic has put us all in an "incredibly strange and tense time," telling followers his "heart goes out to everyone going through something" and reminding IG users that even logging on to an AA meeting via Zoom can be a big help right now. "Life doesn't have to be short and we don't have to blow it!" he wrote. John's dad Rob, 56, got sober 30 years ago, thanks to Steven Tyler, who called Rob just a few weeks into his sobriety despite the fact the two had never met. "He called me and said, 'I heard you're in recovery and I just wanted to say, 'Hey, you're going to do great,'" Rob recalled (via Page Six). The outreach made an impact Rob would never forget. Chiming in on the comments to his son's two-year marker post, Rob wrote: "I have never been more proud. Your hard work is an inspiration. Keep Coming Back."