Sean "Puffy" Combs grounding private jet -- to save bucks

It seems that Sean Combs, the entrepreneur-turned rap singer-turned-fashion-designer-cum-man- about-town (also sometimes known as P. Diddy or Puff Daddy or Diddy or variations on same) is grounding his private jet because of the extravagant cost of fuel.

I'd call it a Sign O' the Times, but that's the title of a song from another singer with an ever-changing name (Prince).

According to this item on Perez Hilton's celebrity gossip website, it costs about $250K for two round trips between New York and L.A. Combs, who juggles a Hollywood career with a thriving clothing business and other ventures in New York, thinks that's just too much. This from a multi-millionaire, (number 33 this year on the Forbes Celebrity 100 list) who's famous for, among many other things, his annual White Ball, in which the (very) rich, (very) famous and (very) beautiful show up to an elite location for a night of glamor and partying, clad only in white.

Sean Combs in the News

    ** FILE ** In this Feb. 24, 2008 file photo, Sean "Diddy" Combs poses on the press line at the Elton John Oscar Party in West Hollywood, Calif. (AP Photo/Dan Steinberg, file)

    AP

    Sean "Diddy" Combs shows off his clothes during a fashion presentation of his clothing lineup in New York Monday, Aug. 11, 2008. (AP Photo/Ed Ou)

    AP

    Sean "Diddy" Combs makes a toast to his guests during a fashion presentation of his clothing lineup in New York Monday, Aug. 11, 2008. (AP Photo/Ed Ou)

    AP

    Sean "Diddy" Combs takes a photo with one of his party guests during a fashion presentation of his clothing lineup in New York Monday, Aug. 11, 2008. (AP Photo/Ed Ou)

    AP

    Sean "Diddy" Combs makes a toast to his guests during a fashion presentation of his clothing lineup in New York Monday, August 11, 2008. (AP Photo/Ed Ou)

    AP

    In this Sunday, June 15, 2008 photo, Sean "Diddy" Combs watches a basketball game in Los Angeles. Combs' latest series, "I Want to Work for Diddy," premieres 9 p.m. EDT Monday, Aug 4, 2008 on VH1. (AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian)

    AP

    Actor/Rapper Sean 'P. Diddy' Combs arrives at the 2008 MTV Movie Awards on June 1, 2008 at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City, California..2008 MTV Movie Awards - Arrivals.Gibson Amphitheatre.Universal City, CA United States.June 1, 2008.Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage.com..To license this image (15893460), contact WireImage.com

    WireImage.com

    Actor/Rapper Sean 'P. Diddy' Combs arrives at the 2008 MTV Movie Awards on June 1, 2008 at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City, California..2008 MTV Movie Awards - Arrivals.Gibson Amphitheatre.Universal City, CA United States.June 1, 2008.Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage.com..To license this image (15893462), contact WireImage.com

    WireImage.com

    Actor/Rapper Sean 'P. Diddy' Combs arrives at the 2008 MTV Movie Awards on June 1, 2008 at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City, California..2008 MTV Movie Awards - Arrivals.Gibson Amphitheatre.Universal City, CA United States.June 1, 2008.Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage.com..To license this image (15893461), contact WireImage.com

    WireImage.com

    Actor Will Smith, actor Jaden Smith, Sean "Diddy" Combs and his son arrive at the World Premiere of Columbia Pictures "Hancock" at Grauman's Chinese Theatre on July 30, 2008 in Hollywood, California..The World Premiere of Columbia Pictures' "Hancock" - Red Carpet.Grauman's Chinese Theatre.Hollywood, CA United States.June 30, 2008.Photo by Lester Cohen/WireImage.com..To license this image (55237472), contact WireImage.com

    WireImage.com


In a statement he makes on his video blog (warning: There's some salty language here), the mogul says "Gas is too M***F***ing high." And until it goes down, he claims he'll be flying commercial. And coach class! (clearly he speaks out of total ignorance of what coach class has become in the last decade). That ain't gonna happen. He'll be in First Class before the plane takes off.

There's a larger message here. Combs likes to think of himself as one of the people -- he grew up in a Harlem housing project -- but he can certainly afford to fly in style. It can't be to simply save costs (he probably easily spends $250K a month on suits). My fellow WalletPopper Josh Smith wonders why Combs, arguably a master of marketing, didn't announce he was grounding his jet in the name of going green, or leaving less of a carbon footprint, or any number of good politically-correct reasons that would keep his name prominent and the money rolling in.

Maybe he just wants to make a statement -- the cost of fuel is affecting everyone, even the rich and famous. If that's what it takes to get our leaders to at the very least pass a sensible energy policy, then I applaud him. Otherwise, call me a cynic: it won't be too long before he's back in the air spreading his wealth.

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