Pulse: Chatter: Buzz … March 2006

Bankruptcy, bipolar disorder, a drug addiction, and the burden of having to wear designer shades rain or shine never stopped restaurateur Neil Stein, so why should a trip to the big house? Stein, sentenced to a year and a day in prison last January by U.S. District Judge Louis Pollak for failure to pay taxes, says plans for his new restaurant, located on or near Rittenhouse Square, will move forward even while he’s up the river. “All I can say is that in 2007, we will open a new contemporary seafood restaurant in this city that will be the first of its kind,” says Stein, adding that he’s been in talks with Floss Barber about designing the restaurant and is also considering concepts for a restaurant project in Old City. … How significant is the crisis of confidence for newspapers these days? The Inky can’t even decide what to call itself. Earlier this year, editor Amanda Bennett and managing editor Anne Gordon made the rounds to outline their vision for 2006, telling reporters that Philly’s largest daily newspaper was, in fact, no longer a newspaper. Instead, it was a “news gathering organization.” … The February issue of GQ magazine lists local pro bass fisherman Mike Iaconelli (left) as the sixth most despised man in pro sports. (Terrell Owens, big surprise, takes the top spot.) One problem: Iaconelli is accused of being a “product of the street” who’s destroying the decorum of fishing. Really? Iaconelli hails from the notorious ’hood of … Runnemede, NJ.