Sued
On Jan. 4 a journalist filed a $24 million lawsuit in Manhattan against Marilyn Manson, 30, the hermaphroditish shock rocker, for assault and battery. Craig Marks, 37, executive editor of the music periodical Spin, claims that Manson's bodyguards slammed him against a wall and then applied a chokehold after a Nov. 23 concert in New York City. Marks suggests he was attacked because his magazine decided not to put Manson (real name: Brian Warner) on its January cover. Police are investigating but haven't made an arrest. Manson's lawyer denied the attack ever happened.

Deaths
Trendsetting modiste Clare Potter, one of the designers credited with inventing American sportswear, died on Jan. 5 in Fort Ann, N.Y. She was 95. Her unconventional notions in the 1930s and '40s helped make trousers on women, for example, standard wear today.

Engaged

Country queen Tanya Tucker, 40, and songwriter Jerry Laseter, 37, will exchange vows in a chapel the singer is building on her ranch near Nashville. It will be the first marriage for Tucker, who has two kids—daughter Presley, 9, and son Beau, 7—from a previous relationship with actor Ben Reed....

Country singer Bryan White, 24, presented his fiancée, One Life to Live's Erika Page, 23, with a 3.6-carat diamond ring on Dec. 16....

Actress Rosie Perez, 32, and director Seth Rosenfeld, 37, also plan to wed. Not a single one of these lovebirds, though, has set a date for the nuptials.

Punished
On Jan. 5 a court in Brussels penalized the two Belgian pranksters who smashed Microsoft chairman Bill Gates in the face with a cream pie last Feb. 4. They were fined $88 each.

Called Off
Over the holidays, Madonna, 40, changed her mind about selling her Miami mansion to Rosie O'Donnell, 36, and will stay put. Even though O'Donnell was looking forward to her new $6 million getaway, her friendship with the Material Mom still has a solid foundation, and Rosie, say their respective reps, remains a welcome guest.

Close Call
Two police officers on patrol pulled former college football star Rohan Marley, 26, from his burning BMW on Jan. 8 in Manhattan. Marley, who played for the University of Miami and is the companion of singer Lauryn Hill, 23, and father of their two children, fell asleep in the vehicle—with the motor running—while waiting for Hill outside a recording studio at 2:30 a.m. An electrical malfunction disabled the doors and windows, but the cops were able to smash the glass and free him.

Exit
Debbie Matenopoulos, 24, has bid adieu to The View. On Jan. 6 the co-creator of the TV coffee klatch, Barbara Walters, said the former MTV production assistant, one of five women (including Walters) who hosted the popular ABC show, was leaving "to spread her wings." A replacement has not yet been chosen.

Wed
DeanFelber, 31, bass player for Hootie and the Blowfish, married Laurie Hutchinson, 25, a magazine editor, in Charleston, S.C., on Jan. 9. Darius Rucker, 32, whose mellow baritone fronts the group, was the best man. He's also the last unmarried member of the quartet.