Only in Jersey: 3/9/12

TGIF! Time for another edition of Only in Jersey!

If it’s filming in Jersey, takes place in Jersey, or is about celebs from Jersey, you will find it here.

Chaz Brown: Hope he's good at juggling.

Jerseyans and reality shows go together like, well, peas and carrots. Case in point: A “Top Chef: Texas” contestant (who was eliminated in the qualifying rounds) from Voorhees will compete in Bravo’s latest food-based competition, “Around the World in 80 Plates,” beginning Wednesday, May 9. Chaz Brown, the chef de cuisine at New York’s Fatty Crab, will battle against 11 experienced cooks in culinary challenges across the globe. The show, which is hosted by Curtis Stone and Cat Cora, sounds like a combination of “Top Chef” and CBS’ “The Amazing Race.” Here’s hoping the French Culinary Institute grad never hears the unfortunate words, “I’m sorry to tell you, but you’ve been eliminated from the race.”

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Only in Jersey: 3/7/12

It’s Wednesday! We’re halfway through the week, and it’s time for another edition of Only in Jersey!

If it’s filming in Jersey, takes place in Jersey, or is about celebs from Jersey, you will find it here.

Who would've thought of West Orange as "status symbol land"?

In the wake of Davy Jones’ untimely death last week, I’ve discovered at least two connections The Monkees have to the Garden State. First, I was very surprised to learn that one of their hit songs, “Pleasant Valley Sunday,’ was written about life in West Orange, of all places. Yup, that’s right: the tune, penned by Carole King and her then-husband, Gerry Goffin, was inspired by their time living on Pleasant Valley Way in the township’s Watchung Mountains. Kinda gives new meaning to the lyrics, huh?
The local rock group down the street
Is trying hard to learn their song
Serenade the weekend squire
Who just came out to mow his lawn

Another Pleasant Valley Sunday
Charcoal burning everywhere
Rows of houses that are all the same
And no one seems to care

See Mrs. Gray
She’s proud today
Because her roses are in bloom
Mr. Green
He’s so serene
He’s got a TV in every room

Another Pleasant Valley Sunday
Here in status symbol land
Mothers complain about how hard life is
And the kids just don’t understand

Creature comfort goals
They only numb my soul and make it hard for me to see
My thoughts all seem to stray to places far away
I need a change of scenery

The second Monkees/Garden State connection, which I recall but had forgotten, is that the band filmed the video for its ’86 comeback hit, “That Was Then, This Is Now,” at Great Adventure’s arena in Jackson. The song and video only feature Monkees Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork, although apparently Davy was part of the tour.

Only in Jersey: 3/3/12

Thank goodness it’s Saturday! Time for another edition of Only in Jersey!

If it’s filming in Jersey, takes place in Jersey, or is about celebs from Jersey, you will find it here.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

“Real Housewives of New Jersey” husband Joe Giudice is making news once again – and this time it has nothing to do with him using his brother’s ID to get himself a driver’s license. New York’s WABC-TV reported last night that Montville’s own “Juicy Joe,” husband of Teresa Giudice, is in hot water for sticking it to tenants who live above his business, Giuseppe’s Homestyle Pizzeria, on Maple Avenue in Hillside. Five families were locked out of their apartments on Wednesday due to fire safety concerns. The power was shut off because of meter tampering, the network said, as well as the landlord’s unpaid PSE&G bill. Hillside Mayor Joseph Menza said the electric company refused to turn the power back on until Joe made good on his $53,000 debt. Joe told reporter Nina Pineda, “… there’s nothing I can do. I don’t own the building,” but it turns out he does, in fact, own it. Then he told Nina he’d tried helping his tenants by installing a generator, which the fire department subsequently shut off because it filled the apartments with deadly carbon monoxide. PSE&G eventually capitulated and turned power back on due to persistent pressure from the township’s mayor and the network. During a final inspection of the apartments, it was also discovered the fire alarms weren’t working, which was apparently because Joe never paid the alarm company. Nina Pineda says that the township plans on citing Joe for putting his tenants’ lives in danger. It sounds like Joe needs a lesson in respecting and valuing the lives of others. Perhaps a viewing of “The Super,” starring another New Jersey native son, Joe Pesci, is in order?

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Only in Jersey: 2/2/12

Welcome to the third edition of Only in Jersey!

If it’s filming in Jersey, takes place in Jersey, or is about celebs from Jersey, you will find it here.

Tom Colicchio: Now THAT'S a knife!/Photo credit Parade Magazine

Paula Deen may be in the news these days for simultaneously revealing she has Type 2 diabetes and announcing her partnership with a diabetes drug company, but it’s the decadent chef’s business relationship with Smithfield Foods that has “Top Chef” judge Tom Colicchio shaking his head. On the Bravo talk show “Watch What Happens Live” Wednesday night, the Elizabeth-born Colicchio said he has a bigger problem with Deen’s association with a company that has questionable hog-farming practices. “I think the bigger issue is Smithfield and their practices, the mass production of pigs,” Colicchio told host Andy Cohen. “There was an expose done on Smithfield in Rolling Stone a couple years back – just go read it. I think that’s worse off than hawking the (diabetes) drug thing. That’s my opinion.” Well, thanks for the suggestion, Tom, don’t mind if I do. But alas, the Rolling Stone article(s) in question have curiously been removed from its site. However, I was able to find locate this reference to said expose (I pray you have a strong constitution because this link includes some gut-churning photos). Smithfield, for its part, tweeted me this response in regard to Tom’s statement: “The Rolling Stone article you referenced contains misinformation” and “While we certainly made some mistakes 15 yrs ago, we’ve changed dramatically since then.”

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Only in Jersey: 2/1/12

Welcome to the second edition of Only in Jersey!

If it’s filming in Jersey, takes place in Jersey, or is about celebs from Jersey, you will find it here.

Teresa and Joe Giudice

Montville’s Giuseppe aka “Juicy Joe” Giudice of Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” pleaded not guilty Monday to using his brother’s documentation to obtain a driver’s license. His attorney, Miles Feinstein, told The Record that the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office offer to cap any prison sentence at 5 years in exchange for a guilty plea was “totally unfair.”  “I believe that because of Joe’s celebrity he is being treated differently,” Feinstein added. Joe is the entrepreneur husband of Teresa Giudice, who will appear on the upcoming season of NBC’s “The Celebrity Apprentice” beginning Sunday, Feb. 19.

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