Elmo made headlines this week

Soon to be the next must-have accessory for the trend-conscious Muppetphile: The $55 ”That Tickles” Talking Elmo adult sweatshirt, a spin-off of last year’s mega-popular Tickle Me Elmo doll. But the garment, hitting stores next month, may raise a few eyebrows. Sporting a large, furry image of Elmo, the shirt contains an embedded device that makes it giggle and squeal when someone strokes the wearer’s chest. Presumably, women could have problems with, uh, overzealous Elmo fans. Blitzz International defends its product, saying it expects no complaints. ”What we’ve seen is that most people who are going to touch it are friends and family,” says Blitzz marketing VP Jeffrey Sitt, though he jokingly adds: ”We have gotten requests for other kinds of vibrating clothes.” As for the inadvertent offender, a Children’s Television Workshop publicist says: ”Elmo is only 2 1/2. He doesn’t even know what sexual harassment is.”