2006_03_3_vh1.jpg Gothamist is very grateful that we didn't have to witness Bloomberg's Hip Hop Press conference yesterday. OK, well, actually we kinda do wish that we'd been there, if only to see Bloomie chatting it up with Ice-T and Russell Simmons, but considering some of the soundbites that made it into today's papers we suspect that even that charm would have quickly worn off ("Welcome to City Hall, or my crib, as I like to call it... Not everybody here understands our language.").

Basically the press conference was another example of the strange ways that businesses are integrating themselves into Gotham in the second Bloomin' term. While we're not at the point where our fair city celebrates DVD releases (*cough* LA *cough*) the city certianly does seem to love it some Viacom these days. Not only did we host this years Country Music Awards, but we'll have the MTV Music Video Awards back come August and now it seems we are also again going to be hosting the VH1 Hip Hop Honors. Which wouldn't be so bad except the city is planning to celebrate the October 17 awards show with "a week of educational, culinary, fashion, sports and cultural activities, called Hip Hop Week." The week will culminate in the awards, hosted by Ice-T, at the Hammerstein Ballroom.

All of which leads us to two questions: 1) Are we the only people who every time we see the name Ice-T, even though he is now on L&O, have the knee-jerk response "remember when he was in Leprechaun 5: Leprechaun in the Hood?" and 2) How much do you think it costs to get New York City to devote a week to advertising your award show?

Breaking: Vaguely related because he was at the Hip-Hop conference yesterday, Russell Simmons and his terrifying wife of eight years Kimora Lee "Dragon Lady" Simmons are splitting up. Crazy!