'American Idol': Paula Abdul says 'Thanks!' to her Dish Rag fans

Paula_abdul american idol

Like it or not, Paula Adbul is not going away.

"Why would we get rid of Paula?" "American Idol" CEO and exec producer Cecile Frot-Coutaz told AP two days after Abdul's gaffe on Tuesday's show. "I love that everyone was talking about it. It was so unexpected. It was something that took up two seconds of airtime. You'd think there was no other news on television."

You'd think there was no other news on the Web, judging by the overwhelming response to yesterday's Dish Rag item about whether Paula should stay or go.

Many DR readers want Paula to stay. "Paula is the show. If she is gone the show will end," wrote Vi.

Some, like Steve, disagreed. "Paula needs to go. She needed to go before the latest goofball stunt."

Others are concerned. "I'm not sure but I think Paula might need an intervention of some sort," wrote Debra.

The Dish Rag caught up with Paula on Thursday night at the Lupus LA's 2008 Orange Ball at the Beverly Wilshire, just after she finishing presenting the Founder's Award  to Dr. Daniel J. Wallace.

Told of the support from fans on the latimes.com's blog, the Dish Rag, Paula said, "I'm so grateful for all the support and love the fans have shown me, not only this week, but in the past. It's very heartwarming and I really appreciate it."

It was a busy night for Abdul. After she left the Orange Ball, she headed to the Four Seasons for the British American Television and Film Assn./Los Angeles first annual British Comedy Festival Awards. "AI" executive producer Nigel Lythgoe was also on hand.

Joel Stratte-McClure, a journalist (and full-disclosure: my husband) who covered both events, spoke to and observed Abdul closely.

"She seems like a very vulnerable, sweet woman," said Stratte-McClure. "One thing I noticed is she seemed to hug everyone she talked to and she spent more time in the restrooms than anyone I've ever seen. The people waiting for her were all asking, 'What on earth can she be doing in there?'"

My theory is that makeup and hair takes a lot of time. Ask any woman! This is especially true for a celebrity like Paula, who is always under scrutiny and being photographed. A more likely scenario? The bathroom is the only place she can hide from reporters.

Photo: Paula Abdul always makes time to help out charities. Thursday night she presented an award at the Lupus LA Orange Ball.
WireImage

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