Dog Bites

Deneuve: De Nerve!
There's a San Francisco lesbian magazine called Deneuve. There's a French actress named Catherine Deneuve. Coincidence?

"It's not named after her," says Deneuve editor Katie Brown. "It's named after our publisher's first girlfriend, back in high school."

But Catherine Deneuve, for one, finds the connection too close for comfort. In an interview in the July 25 issue of The Advocate -- "the national gay and lesbian newsmagazine" -- the actress announced that she is suing Deneuve. "They are trying to bring the magazine to France now, and it is not fair. They are using my name, and my name is a commodity. You cannot do that," she tells interviewer Judy Wieder.

Deneuve (whose flawless, creamy skin is much in evidence in the revival of Luis Bu–uel's 1967 erotic masterpiece Belle de Jour at area cinemas) goes on to say that she is aware that Deneuve says it is not named after her: "They say that it is some friend or lover of something [sic], but that does not matter. Everyone thinks it is me."

Still, Deneuve -- who played a lesbian vampire in The Hunger and who plays a teacher with a crush on a schoolgirl in the upcoming Child of the Night -- doesn't want people to think that she's down on Deneuve because it's a lesbian magazine. "Yes, I know ... lesbians will think I am suing them. It's not true. It does not matter what the product is -- whether it is a perfume or a magazine. My name is a commodity, and you cannot put it on something without my permission. ... I hope people will understand the real issue here," she tells Wieder.

Deneuve isn't commenting. "We're not talking about the lawsuit," editor Brown says.

A Stitch in Timing
Eddie Bauer unveils a flagship store (one of three nationwide) in San Francisco this week, sprawling over four floors and 30,000 square feet of prime Union Square retail space. As part of the opening, the company (a subsidiary of Spiegel, that catalog firm from Chicago) is hyping Bauer's ingenuity in outfitting royalty, movie celebs, and Himalayan mountain climbers with American-made products. The hoopla coincides with "Zoned for Slavery: The Child Behind the Label" -- a tour by two teen-age workers from the maquiladora factories in Central America that mass-produce apparel for the Gap, JCPenney, Wal-Mart ... and Eddie Bauer. As the doors to the new Bauer flagship open Wednesday, Aug. 2, the aforementioned teens will lead a group of supporters from the National Labor Committee in a noontime demonstration outside the Gap headquarters at 1 Harrison. The protest aims to draw attention to the conditions in the maquiladora clothing factories, where, the NLC claims, kids as young as 13 work up to 12 hours a day to produce, among other items, a line of Eddie Bauer pocketed T-shirts. An Eddie Bauer representative says the retailer is "aware of allegations" about the factories and has "initiated an investigation" into possible breaches of company policy.

You're Surrounded
Until last week, the Union Oil tower (that 191-foot wedge topped with the orange-and-blue "76" that telegraphs the time of day to motorists coming and going on the Bay Bridge) competed with the Bank of America Building as the skyline's biggest eyesore. Now, BofA wants a monopoly on the city's ugly edifices. Having bought the four-story building from which the tower sprouts in Rincon Hill, BofA has petitioned the S.F. Planning Commission for permission to give the monolith a face lift in the form of the bank's blue-and-red corporate logo. If the proposal is approved, commuters will have reminders from all directions of who's running this town.

By Ellen McGarrahan, John Sullivan

 
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