By Whitney Pastorek and Ann Lieber
Updated October 01, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT


Much to the dismay of Flavor Flav, we’re sure, Surreal Life vixen Brigitte Nielsen, 41, is engaged to bartender Mattia Disse, 25.


On Sept. 19, Britney Spears, 22, married fashion plate Kevin Federline, 26. It is his first marriage; she had a 55-hour Vegas hookup annulled in January.


Singer Carnie Wilson, 36, and guitarist hubby Ron Bonfiglio are expecting their first child. No due date yet…. Former Good Morning America host Joan Lunden, 54, and businessman husband Jeff Konigsberg will welcome twins via a surrogate in March. The couple’s twins Kate and Max, 1, are from the same surrogate; Lunden has three daughters from a previous marriage.


Country singer Deana Carter, 38, and filmmaker beau Chris Hicky, 30, greeted their first child, a son, on Sept. 15 in L.A. The couple has not yet released the child’s name.


On Sept. 20, CBS newsman Dan Rather, 72, apologized for a Sept. 8 story on 60 Minutes in which he cited documents alleging President Bush failed to finish his National Guard service that the network now says cannot be verified. ”We made a mistake in judgment,” said Rather in a statement, ”and for that I am sorry.”


Terminator 2 star Edward Furlong, 27, was arrested for public intoxication Sept. 15 in Florence, Ky. Police were called after Furlong and friends tried to remove live lobsters from a restaurant tank. Furlong must pay $170 in fines or appear in court.


On Sept. 21, a federal judge in NYC granted Martha Stewart’s request to begin serving her five-month prison term early, ordering her to surrender by Oct. 8. Stewart, 63, who will serve her sentence in either Connecticut or Florida, was convicted in March of lying to federal investigators about a stock sale.


Comedian Rodney Dangerfield, 82, who underwent heart surgery Aug. 24, had entered a ”light coma” but began breathing on his own again and showing ”signs of awareness” Sept. 20, according to a statement from his wife, Joan.


”You don’t overcome your fear,” Ladder 49‘s Joaquin Phoenix (with costar John Travolta Sept. 20) said of his un-firefighterly fear of heights. ”You learn to control it.”


Home Alone survivor Macaulay Culkin, 24, was arrested Sept. 17 in Oklahoma City and charged with two misdemeanor counts of possession of controlled substances. The actor and a friend were stopped for speeding; officers who searched the vehicle found Culkin carrying $3,000 in cash as well as baggies containing pot and the drugs Xanax and Klonopin (for which he had no prescription). Culkin posted $4,000 bail and is scheduled for an Oct. 15 arraignment. Reps for the actor had no comment.


Photojournalist Eddie Adams, 71, whose 1969 Pulitzer Prize-winning picture of a Vietcong guerrilla being executed by a Vietnamese police chief symbolized the war’s brutality, of Lou Gehrig’s disease, Sept. 19, in NYC…. Kenny Buttrey, 59, session drummer for Bob Dylan, Neil Young, and Jimmy Buffett, of cancer, Sept. 12, in Nashville…. Divorce lawyer to the stars Marvin Mitchelson, 76, who represented the likes of Joan Collins and Bianca Jagger, and originated the concept of ”palimony” — alimony for unmarried couples who split — of cancer, Sept. 18, in L.A…. Grand Ole Opry member Skeeter Davis (née Mary Frances Penick, left), 72, who had a crossover hit with 1963’s ”The End of the World,” of cancer, Sept. 19, in Nashville…. Elly Annie Schneider, 90, one of the Munchkins in The Wizard of Oz, of heart failure, Sept. 6, in Sarasota, Fla…. Lawrence P. Bachmann, 92, studio executive and film writer (The People vs. Dr. Kildare), of undisclosed causes, Sept. 7, in Woodland Hills, Calif…. Weather Girl Izora Armstead (”It’s Raining Men”), age unknown, reportedly of heart failure, Sept. 16, near Oakland.