Here's what the cast of ''Friends'' is up to this week. How we'll all benefit from Lisa Kudrow's genius. Plus, Courteney Cox buys a non-fixer-upper

By Gary Susman
Updated February 26, 2003 at 05:00 AM EST

HIGH WIRE ACT Lisa Kudrow is not a ditz; she just plays one on TV. In fact, according to our favorite Internet rumor of the week, she’s a brilliant inventor. According to, she’s come up with a device that will solve her problem of frequently misplacing her cell phone. With the help of a ”Friends” technician, she reportedly rigged a 10-foot rubber leash that clips onto the phone at one end and to the inside of her handbag at the other end. At the urging of Jennifer Aniston and Courteney Cox, the report says, Kudrow has had her lawyers see about getting a patent and marketing the cord by the end of the year. Which sounds great, but isn’t the point of cell phones that they’re cordless?

HOME COURTENEY ADVANTAGE For what may be the first time, Courteney Cox has bought a house she doesn’t have to fix up. The Los Angeles Times reports that Cox and David Arquette have purchased a Hollywood Hills home for $4.5 million. (That’s what she earns for about two hours and 15 minutes worth of ”Friends” episodes.)

Cox, who will have her own design show this fall on cable’s WE channel, makes a hobby of buying homes, renovating them, and selling them at a profit (as she and Arquette did with their home in Brentwood, which they sold two months ago to Ricki Lake), but this new residence, built in 1969, was recently refurbished. To buy the four-bedroom, 4,000-square-foot house (whose amenities include a media room, a pool, and a four-car garage), the Arquettes outbid another talk-show host, Ellen DeGeneres. The former sitcom star, whose daytime chatfest debuts this fall, has put her own Beverly Hills pad on the market, with an asking price of $4.75 million.