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In an attempt to refute widespread speculation that her recent spate of alternately incomprehensible/slurry/ fidgety/nap-riddled promotional appearances were caused by a pre-interview regimen of washing down a joint compound bucket brimming with a medley of prescription painkillers with an entire bottle of grain alcohol, embattled American Idol judge Paula Abdul insisted to the media gathered at Saturday's TCA press tour event that any suspicious mental impairment on her part is due entirely to her own naturally imbalanced neurochemicals:

"I've never been drunk," she said. "I'm not under the influence of anything." Referring to her tenure as a judge on "American Idol," she added, "The first five years no one said anything about how I behaved or how I talked."

If we're to take Abdul at her word (and, really, why shouldn't we? She's on the most popular show on TV!), we have to assume that the apparent erasing from her memory of last season's "one of them ate pizza and one of them ate salad/the melon and the moth" and "irrational fear of spontaneously sprouting male genitalia" incidents is some kind of subconscious coping mechanism meant to protect her from the painful persecution of a year ago, and not a pharmaceutical-induced retrograde amnesia that's so thoroughly wiped out her recollection of past Idol installments that she can no longer remember how Clay Aiken became famous.