Stan Stovall and Marty Bass top the list of best-dressed news dudes in Baltimore. So say the readers of This Just In, who wrote, phoned and faxed their opinions from throughout the Greater Patapsco Drainage Basin. Stovall (Channel 2) also got a vote for "best undressed." He has, of course, that tremendous physique, which sometimes makes his clothes look too snug. But who am I to argue? Stovall got the most votes. Bass fTC (Channel 13) was a close second, followed by Norm Lewis (2), Virg Jacques (11) and Kai Jackson (13). "I think this contest is a disgrace," scribbled some dudette who claimed to be married to a news dude. "We have six kids. We don't have the means for my husband to dress like Marty Bass. This contest is a lot of garbage. We don't like it a bit. P.S. Tony Pann  is a good dresser."
The captain vs. the city
Capt. Dan Davis and the city are at it again. This time, the captain's antagonist is the Liquor Board, which suspended the license for his popular Dead Eye Saloon, the funky waterfront place in South Baltimore that reflects Davis' hard-bitten, boat-rockin' character. What was the violation? Dead Eye customers were being served on an outdoor deck without the approval of the board. "They really hit me -- it's an indefinite suspension," Davis says, adding that 38 microbrewers were scheduled to take part in a festival at the Dead Eye this weekend. "We had to cancel it. We had 12 bands scheduled over two days. We were expecting 4,000 to 5,000 people." Too bad, all this. Just recently, the cable television network fX produced a show at the Dead Eye, located at the Baltimore Yacht Basin, a workingman's marina under the Hanover Street Bridge. That marina has been central to Davis' unhappy relationship with the city. For years, the two sides have squabbled over the lease agreement on the place and Davis' contract to operate it. Davis, of course, sees the yanking of his liquor license as the city's latest effort to wrest control of the marina. Looks like this one will end up where all of Davis' fights end up -- in court.
The unwelcome mat
Ken Nigro, former Orioles front-office man, is no longer running the team's fantasy camps and cruises. In fact, he's completely on his own now. Just so everyone knows, the O's had Piper & Marbury warn him away from the Orioles' "cruise reunion" last month at Camden Yards. "Mr. Nigro has no authorization to attend the event or to be on Orioles premises at the time of the event," said the letter from P&M.; That went out June 26. On July 3, Nigro hired a plane to haul a banner advertising his new camp -- the Brooks Robinson Fantasy Camp -- over a sellout crowd of 46,560 at Oriole Park. Ooh, I bet Da Boss loved that.
Touching off a dispute
Testifying before the Baltimore County Liquor Board, attorney Melvin J. Kodenski got into the morals-in-entertainment debate. He presented a tape of a cable TV show -- "Real Sex 12," amateur erotic videos, Sunday prime time, Home Box Office -- and asked the board to take a look at its explicit sex scenes. The board declined. Still, Kodenski argued that it's silly to ban bare breasts in county barrooms -- such as Zebra's, the one he was defending -- when kids can see sex on HBO. Good point, but lost in this particular hearing because toplessness wasn't the only issue. According to a "field inspection," a topless female dancer touched a male customer on his jeans during Zebra's "lingerie party" last March. George "Eagle Eye" Engle, the liquor board's 70-year-old field inspector, confirmed the toplessness. A vice cop confirmed the touching. In his own defense, Zebra's owner, Jerome Sapperstein, said he had tried to control his dancers. He even fired one for touching. She got so mad she went into a restroom and set the hand towels on fire. That halted the show and ended the fine buffet that was being served. Sapperstein was fined $750.
I hear Baltimore will be bidding adieu to a certain prime-time anchorwoman shortly -- if not sooner. Film at 11. . . . If you can handle another cliched, inaccurate and condescending portrait of Baltimore, go find last Sunday's travel section of the New York Times. . . . For the record: The woman who played Brunhilde in the Scardina Plumbing commercials (with water squirting from the horns of her helmet) is local actress Karen Costanzi. That's her face on the Scardina billboard on Harford Road, too. . . . WPOC-FM news director Bill Vanko heads for California this weekend to be a contestant on "Jeopardy." The show -- or shows, depending on how Vanko does -- will air in the fall. . . . Hey, it's Bastille Day! If you want to do that French thing, here are your options: (1) Tersiguel's in Ellicott City, (2) Jeannier's in the Broadview (3) Weber's on Boston Street (4) M. Gettier in Fells Point. Or, you could just stick some fries in the oven and rent "Danton" at the video store. (It's a surprisingly good film,
with the superb Gerard Depardieu in the lead.)
Well isn't well yet
The Chesapeake Wildlife Sanctuary in Bowie, a nonprofit wildlife rehabilitation hospital, had a big problem a few weeks ago. Its well ran dry. Pleas for help were answered quickly, however. Donations poured in from Baltimore to Washington, and Deer Park Spring Water donated 600 gallons of the bottled stuff. Problem is, the new well has failed potability tests, and Dianne Pearce, the sanctuary's executive director, is still worried about her 500 guests. The phone number is (301) 390-7011.