ARSENIO HALL: ESCHEWING THE FAT

ROXANNE PULITZER: SHEETS MUSIC

SONNY BONO: HIS HONOR INTACT

WEIGH TO GO: Comedian ARSENIO HALL says his successful talk "show went to his waist instead of his head, which called for immediate action. Before the program's January debut, Hall put on 10 lbs. "Doing the show," he says, "I gained another 10. So I went to Nutri/System and hated it because I was in this seminar with these fat women sitting around saying, 'I can't eat no doughnuts?' But I learned to eat better. Spago's duck-sausage pizzas are better than sex to me. I'm learning to maintain my weight. I mean, OPRAH losing weight is no good if, three months later, she looks like NELL CARTER."

NERVES OF STEAL: Pop singer NOEL is good in the pinch. "I was up in the Bronx hanging out with my friends the night of my first performance at a downtown Manhattan nightclub last year, "recalls Noel, who recently won a Best Vocalist award at the SKC New York Music Awards, "I was scheduled to go on at midnight, but we were having fun and lost track of time. I looked, and it was 11:35. There was no way I could take a train and be on time, and I couldn't afford a cab, so my friends and I went shopping for a ride. We found this old jalopy, hot-wired it, rode down the West Side Highway at 90 mph and just made it." Though Noel and his pals ditched the car and got away scot-free, he says he'll never repeat the crime: "I have too much to lose now."

WINDS OF CHANGE: A recent stop on ROXANNE PULITZER'S promotional tour for the paperback of her lurid autobiography, The Prize Pulitzer, took her to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the newspaper founded by ex-husband PETER's grandfather. Asked by a reporter about the trumpet she supposedly slept with and which became a kinky hallmark of the 1982 Pulitzer divorce, Roxanne said, "I'm into woodwinds now."

SONNY DISPOSITION: When it comes to comedy, SONNY BONO maintains a fair CHER of integrity. At a recent taping of NBC's Friday Night Videos, the Palm Springs Mayor refused to continue when the show's co-host, comedian JUDY TENUTA, walked on dressed like Cher. (Judy finished the show without him.) "I felt it was inappropriate," says Bono about the improvisation. "It didn't feel right, and as Mayor, I didn't think it represented a responsible person. I think we've beaten this Sonny and Cher thing to death. It's demeaning to Cher, too." Sonny reported that daughter CHASTITY also has no plans to parody her mother. "She's classier than that."

SHOP TALK: Comedian RITA RUDNER, who will be the comic headliner at a London benefit for the Prince's Trust this week, has been scheduled also for a preshow dinner with CHARLES and DIANA. "I'm really excited about seeing her," says Rudner. "Di and I have lots in common. We both have husbands with overbearing mothers. And I've always wanted to meet someone who loves clothes more than I do. We can talk malls."