Sorry excuse for "sorry"
District Judge Manny Alvarez told The Dallas Morning News that Michael Irvin's apology "seemed sincere." The News itself referred to the now-famous apology as "profuse."

Is Buzz the only one around here who spent enough hard time in the fourth grade to know a crossed-fingers-behind-the-back "I'm sorry" when we hear it?

Irvin could have said: "I'm sorry I got mixed up in drugs," or "I'm sorry I told a topless dancer to lie to a grand jury after having my goons humiliate her with an orifice search," or even a simple, "I'm sorry I dabbled in drugs, dildos, and lesbian sex."

Instead, he said: "I'm sorry for taking everybody through it." The words "drugs" and "sex" did not cross his lips.

Rough translation from the grade-school phrase book: "I'm sorry I got caught."

Irvin's mendacious moment also included the statement that he wasn't offered a plea bargain until late in the trial. "Everybody says, Why didn't I take it earlier? I would have, but it wasn't offered until yesterday." Actually, as the Observer already reported, sources in the district attorney's office say Irvin was offered a chance to plead out to a felony before the trial ever began, but he insisted on a misdemeanor deal. The felony plea only started to look good about the time topless dancer Rachelle Smith testified about threats, sex soirees, and strip searches.

News you can chews
The normally hyper-brown-nosing business section of the Arlington Morning News took a bold, if eerily unnatural, step recently. Arlington's Dallas-based very own newspaper (not to be confused with Arlington's Fort Worth-based very own newspaper) began printing the Arlington Health Department's weekly food-service establishment-inspection results.

But might that not require the paper to print something negative about an Arlington business?

Not to worry. As the inaugural story seemed to explain, the ratings are virtually meaningless. "Don't choose where to eat out according to a restaurant's Arlington Health Department scores," the article quoted Ginger Shaffer [senior sanitarian]. "The scores are no indicator of whether the sauce is salty or the service is slow..."

No kidding, but do the ratings show if the kitchen is funky?
Well, not exactly, the article went on to explain. "Even though the score may be low, we're going to require them to take corrective action," Shaffer told the AMN. The sanitarian (love that title) reminds us that we're safer dining out than eating at home.

You're probably wondering--like thousands of all-important Arlington readers--if the scores indicate so little, what's the point of AMN printing them?

We have no idea.
But we were relieved to hear that French restaurant Cacharel tied with the Fielder Road Baptist Church for top scores that week. Not that we wouldn't be delighted to eat heartily at low-scoring Grandy's on Little Road.

A coyote by any other name...
Buzz, at first, thought justice was served when Dallas high-roller Henry Billingsley announced he was pleading guilty to smuggling a Libyan official across the Mexican border to negotiate a clandestine deal in Dallas real estate. After all, this was an official from a terrorist nation linked to blowing a civilian airliner out of the sky.

Then Billingsley, son-in-law to Crow family greatness, issued his official statement (reprinted here in its entirety): "I made an error for which I am genuinely sorry. I cannot discuss this further as it is in the courts."

Our heart melted. Hasn't he suffered enough?
Buzz has to wonder: Did Billingsley hire Qadhafi's public-relations firm while he was schmoozing the Libyans?

Is that a yearly lease, or just 16 months?
If you're a lawyer and you don't put much stock in karma (which sort of goes without saying), there's a great deal on office space at the Yale Street Law Offices, 5630 Yale Boulevard.

Two very nice offices once occupied by former attorneys Robert Rose and David Burrows are for lease there. Both men pleaded guilty to federal tax-evasion charges; Rose's business address is now the federal facility in El Paso.

Speaking of Rose, we're sorry to burst your bubble if you've heard the rumor at the federal building that he got punched out by another prisoner who was dissatisfied with the quality of Rose's jailhouse legal advice. Alas, Rose's lawyer, Reed Prospere, says there isn't any truth to that particular bit of wishful thinking.

--Glen Warchol

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Glen Warchol