Welcome to the Smart Set. Every morning we bring you the gossip coverage, filtered. Today: Vieira makes it official, D.C. opera lovers check out the Chinese embassy, and nobody wants to work for Keith Olbermann.
- Meredith Vieira officially announced Monday that she's leaving NBC's Today show in June. The show's allDAY blog promptly posted a "10 reasons why we love Meredith" listicle that felt like a passive aggressive swipe at the departing co-host. Among the things the staff "loves" about Vieira: "She's a seasoned, savvy journalist ... She's a total flirt ... She's useless in the kitchen and owns up to it." [Today]
- New CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley doesn't believe in the anchor-as-star, but he apparently does believe in his obligation to look good. The 60 Minutes correspondent has already reportedly had an eyebrow and eye lift in anticipation of replacing Katie Couric June 6. Tuesday, he lifted eyebrows, though not his own, with a speech to his staff that sounded like something out "a religious revival." Among Pelley's reported motivational ploys: "I need your strength and your wisdom, and together we'll lift this up." [Page Six]
- Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sen. Pat Leahy, Sen. Richard Shelby, Rep. Dennis Kucinich, Rep. Ed Royce, and former defense secretary Bill Cohen were among the notable D.C. opera lovers who attended the Washington National Opera's Opera Ball at the Chinese embassy chancery Saturday night. The event raised more than $2.5 million, and was the first big event to be held at the chancery since renovations were completed in December. [The Reliable Source/Politico]
- Justin Bieber didn't impress CSI star Marg Helgenberger with his professionalism when he guest-starred on the show last September. In a radio interview, the actress called him a "brat" who "locked one of the show's producers in a closet" and "put his fist through a cake that was on the craft services table." [Le Grande via Salon]
- Keith Olbermann is struggling to find people willing to work on his new Current TV talk show. As a result, he's "crawled back to his contacts at MSNBC...to beg for staff," including an executive producer. "Everyone is laughing," one source said of the request from the prickly Olbermann. "They would never leave this network to work for him." [Page Six]