Apparently Emma Watson Left Brown Because She Was A Total Freakshow

Now that Emma Watson is on hiatus from Brown, you might think we no longer have any reason to talk about her. Wrong! That scarlet letter “B” is forever. And in true Emma Watson fashion, she’s giving the presses plenty of postmortem fodder about her failed attempts at Ivy League “normalcy.”

The New York Daily News reports, inexplicably, that Watson is still hung up on the whole “I just want to be an ordinary zillionaire with Gwyneth Paltrow’s haircut from the nineties” schtick. Things that apparently encouraged her to leave Brown, apart from her thriving career as the face of Harry Potter Land:

1) She got heckled in class for participating, mostly by people who liked to yell “Three points for Gryffindor!” whenever she correctly identified a bezoar commented on geopolitics in Burkina Faso. This, according to the NYDN, is evidence of the “sophisticated wit and cinematic expertise of her Ivy League peers.” We’d actually venture that it’s evidence of a few too many nights spent on the futon smoking dope and listening to Jim Dale on tape–but hey, what do we know?

2) She and her orange-vested security unit had a hard time fitting in with the regular folks. And her freshman-year roommate was kind of weird about the whole “strict confidentiality agreement” thing. (We know the feeling–not being allowed to sell the contents of your celebrity roommate’s shower caddy on Ebay is, like, the pits.)

We’ve said this before, and we’ll say it again: Emma’s chances of being a “normal girl” aren’t going to get any better if she keeps popping up in gossip rags. Perhaps acting in a movie that doesn’t involve wizard robes would help to staunch the spate of Hermione jokes. Or maybe she should talk to James Franco about how to be a normal person, since he’s clearly got it down.

Columbia Professor Arrested for Incest

Holy smoke. Shit just got heavy at Columbia.

David Epstein, a 46-year-old political science professor at Columbia, was arrested and charged with incest on Wednesday morning. Epstein had a three-year-long sexual relationship with his daughter, now 24, which began in 2006 and was reportedly consensual. He has since been released on recognizance, which means that someone should go make sure he hasn’t already left for Canada.

The Spec reports that as of last week, Epstein was teaching two classes on campus: a lecture called “Scope and Methods,” and a class called “Research Topics and Game Theory.” As of right now, though, Epstein’s on administrative leave. Maybe his students won’t have to take their finals. (Hey, there’s a silver lining to everything, right? Wrong.)

Two days ago, Epstein was also (at least functionally) married to a fellow Columbia poli sci professor, Sharyn O’Halloran. The Spec checked his Facebook page–wise newshounds!–and have since determined that the pair is no longer married online. Or, presumably, in real life.

The accused made an appearance in court today, but no trial date has been set yet. Epstein currently faces a single felony count, but if convicted he could face up to four years in prison.

The story has already been picked up by several mainstream news organizations, including Gothamist and the New York Daily News. An Oprah special and a Lifetime movie are undoubtedly also in the works as we speak. That might be the most frightening thing about all this, if you discount the fact that the man spent three years having illegal freaky sex with his young daughter while simultaneously teaching classes full of girls young enough to be his daughter.

By the way, he also taught at Harvard. Make what you will of that.

IvyGate might have to start rationing its Columbia jokes soon. Not just because we’re running low after Tuesday’s drug bust scandal, but also because…well, things up there are getting seriously disturbing, and we want to make sure we have enough when the ground cracks open and swallows Columbia whole.

Penn Newspaper Lines Its Pockets with Death Money

Penn Newspaper Lines Its Pockets with Death MoneyWorking at an independent student newspaper like the Daily Pennsylvanian, as I did for three or four years, entails a lot of grown-up stress. The school endorses you as a worthwhile educational opportunity but laughs at the thought of giving you even a farthing’s worth of money.

That’s right you 19-year-old editors, earn your own bread. Sell advertising or cease to exist. And if worrying about a corporation’s fiscal standing isn’t enough, sweat it over about Jane from Psych 1. She’ll never go to the frat semi-formal with you, because she likes Tad, a Wharton man, even though he likes Ashley, but she’s a ho and everyone knows it. I mean did you see her at Alpha Chi Ho-mega last week?

Oh right, newspapers. Turns out the DP kids are alright after all, because they’re now inappropriately rich, at least by Dr. Evil‘s standards. According to a New York Daily News report, the recently deceased gossip columnist, TV personality and Hamptons flaneur Claudia Cohen (Penn ’72) left some special happiness for her old fish wrapper:

‘In a will filed in Manhattan Surrogate’s Court, Cohen gave $10 million to the Spence School on the upper East Side, $5 million to the Alzheimer’s Association and $1 million to the University of Pennsylvania’s the Daily Pennsylvanian, “which meant so much to me and my career.”

My first reaction after reading this was a simple “Good Lord.” Every thought since has been “Good Lord.” I mean, that money could have gone to a socially responsible cause, like anywhere else.

This Cohen is rarely mentioned among famous DP alums. (Actually the only famous DP alum anyone ever mentions is the single worst college newspaper alum imaginable: Hayden Christensen. I mean Stephen Glass. Life as a House?) Yet here she drops the ad man’s wet dream’s worth of skrilla. But can the DP use that money to buy better voiceovers?

–JIM NEWELL