Michael Phelps, a stripper and that British rag (again)

News of the World, the British tabloid that made a splash with the Michael Phelps bong photo, has a new story about the Olympian, and thank goodness this time there's no photographic evidence.

In fact, the paper offers no evidence at all, save for the word of a Baltimore stripper.

Scores dancer Theresa White told the paper that she knows Phelps in the biblical sense, and that back in November they had a three-hour romp with a third, unidentified person.

Forget the purported sexcapades. Her juiciest claims: That Phelps cries when he's drunk, talks about his mom all the time and promised to take White to the Capital Grille but only forked out for a Taco Bell "value meal."

"He just bought me some soft tacos," she told the paper. "No romantic candle-lit dinner."

Phelps' representatives at Octagon did not respond to a message seeking comment.

White, whose stage name is Gisele, could not be found at the club early this week, as the story swept to the New York Post, Fox Sports and even dancersupply.com, a site where you can pick up the latest exotic dancer news as well as a $485 portable stainless steel stripper pole. (The non-skid pad is $11 extra.)

Exhibiting exceptional naivete for a woman who takes her clothes off for a living, White apparently did not anticipate the frenzy she ignited with her Phelpsian tell-all.

"She's a little shell-shocked," said Scores general manager Sean Lewis.

It wasn't the media attention per se that had White rattled. It was that one person in particular had gotten wind of the story.

"Her mom found out," Lewis said.

Until now, Lewis said, White's mother didn't know how she made a living.

What was her cover story?

"Usually it's cocktail waitress," Lewis said.

And now Mom knows her daughter is up to something much cheaper: peddling herself to a British rag.

It seemed telling when former Gov. Bob Ehrlich elected to keep his campaign office open after losing to Martin O'Malley. The decision said "rematch" to lots of pol-watchers.

So what are we to think now that the ex-governor has closed the office just 18 months before the election? No rematch?

Ehrlich spokesman Henry Fawell said we should not read anything into Bob Ehrlich for Maryland's clearing out of 8600 LaSalle Road in Towson last week. The space has been Ehrlich HQ at least since his days in Congress.

The move means "Nothing, other than Governor Ehrlich wanting to be prudent about space as he determines whether to seek public office in the near term," Fawell said via e-mail.

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