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Brad and Jennifer splitsville? Surely there must be some sordid tidbit of their marital crisis in which America can take comfort. But their publicists aren’t talking, so perhaps we can instead dig into the celebrity-dirt vaults of yesteryear, which are filled with tales every bit as tantalizingly trashy as those of today. Stars have long had a desire to keep their offscreen lives as bizarre and fantastical as their movies. Whether it was Katharine Hepburn enjoying the company of other women, Charlie Chaplin enjoying the company of underage girls, or Jean Harlow dying in a way too disgusting to repeat (let’s just say it had to do with pee), as long as there’s been a Hollywood, there’s been tawdry gossip to go along with it. Don’t even try to pretend you don’t love wallowing in the misery of beautiful people when David Thomson reads from his new book, The Whole Equation: A History of Hollywood, at 7 p.m. at Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free. (202) 364-1919. (Jason Powell)