PATTI DAVIS, whose parents are former White House occupants RONALD and NANCY REAGAN, is livid over the persistent false rumor that she is collaborating with biographer KITTY KELLEY on a tell-all book about Mrs. Reagan. "I know why this rumor is still kicking around. Every time she's asked about the 'collaboration,' [Kelley] smiles and says, 'Well, I never reveal my sources,' in a way that makes people assume it's true," says Davis, who's writing her third novel. Patti may not be dishing dirt about Mom, but she's willing to go on record here about her political differences with Dad. "I think he did a lot of things that were very wrong and ignored things like the environment, which we didn't have eight years to lose on—and we lost it."
Basketball great CHARLES BARKLEY, who plays for the Philadelphia 76ers, has no patience for idol chatter. "I have a sneaker deal myself, but I don't understand why people would buy one sneaker endorsed by one player over the other," says Barkley, who has been on the National Basketball Association's All-Star team for three years running. "Kids idolize professional athletes, which is wrong in itself, and they just copy what they're wearing. I think one of the problems we have in today's society is that it's the parents' job to be role models. To kids that idolize me, I tell them don't do so just because I can dribble a basketball—that's really sick."
NO LONGER ON THIN ICE:
"A few months ago I thought the Berlin Wall coming down would never happen in this century," says two-time Olympic figure-skating champion KATARINA WITT, who is East German. "Before perestroika, I did feel I had to be careful about what I said to the press. But the Wall came down, and everything is more free now." Witt will be joining fellow Olympic champ BRIAN BOITANO, who's American, on an international ice-show tour, starting April 15. And how are the two, skating together for the first time, managing out on the ice? Boitano laughingly reveals, "She trips me more often than not. Here lam looking stupid, and she'll stand there and ask, 'Why did you fall?' and I say, 'Because you tripped me.' We're like clowns sometimes."
A JOINT EFFORT:
Actor CRAIG T. NELSON, 45, the star of ABC's situation comedy Coach, gives us the dope on college. Asked if his school's football coach was anything like Coach's Coach Hayden, Nelson says, "I never had a chance to meet the football coach at the University of Arizona [in the '60s] because I was in drama, and the two just didn't mix. Back then, we were busy smoking dope and painting, while they were busy on the football field smoking dope and hitting each other."
GOLDIE HAWN, who first made her name some 20 years ago as a dizzy blond on NBC's Laugh-In, recently had a reunion with Laugh-In's producer, GEORGE SCHLATTER, at a taping for a SAMMY DAVIS JR. tribute, airing on ABC next Sunday (Feb. 4). Hawn said afterwards, "You know how you forget what you're doing most of the time? I do. Coming out on the stage, I forgot my lines, and I actually forgot my first lyric to my song." Schlatter told her, "You forgetting lines is how I got to Beverly Hills. If you had remembered them, we'd both still be living in the Valley driving a pickup truck."