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BABY, IT'S YOU

Talk about a scrapbook.

He's 2 years old, but Jeremy Zorek has already been photographed with dozens of celebrities as he and his stay-at-home dad wander New York with a camera.

"This just started as a lark, and I was content with that," said Michael Zorek, who chronicles their adventures on www.whoisthatwithjeremy.com. But then "it took on a life of its own."

Jeremy's first snapshot was with NFL twins Tiki Barber of the New York Giants and Ronde Barber of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in July 2002, when he was 4 months old. Zorek, who has worked as an actor and in public relations, had decided to stay home while his wife went back to work.

Zorek bought a souvenir Giants helmet to benefit a charity and asked Tiki to autograph it. He had his camera with him and later sent copies of the photo to friends and family.

Two months later, Zorek and Jeremy attended a book signing by Jamie Lee Curtis. Someone in the audience yelled, "Take a picture with that kid." A few days later, a similar picture appeared in the New York Post with the caption, "Who is that with Jeremy?"

That photo also got passed around, and someone suggested Zorek create the Web site, which now features Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Billy Joel, Sarah Jessica Parker, Hugh Hefner, G. Gordon Liddy, Spike Lee, Bill Clinton and Elmo from Sesame Street.

In its first year, the site received about 1,600 visitors. The tipping point came last March, when someone mentioned it on a Web log, and soon it was picked up by other blogs. It's received more than 300,000 visitors, earning Jeremy more than a half-dozen TV and magazine appearances.

Now Jeremy sometimes gets recognized by celebrities, mostly from a widely circulated photo of him with Madonna.

"It blows my mind," said Zorek, recalling the time he asked Donald Trump to pose for a photograph with Jeremy. "I was flabbergasted that Donald Trump would have an inkling who my son was."

Coincidentally, Trump and Jeremy wore matching scowls for that picture.

Jeremy has no idea what a celebrity is, his father said. "To him, taking a picture with Puff Daddy is the same as taking a picture with his Uncle Mark."

Most of the time, Jeremy smiles on cue. It helps that the boy has modeled. But he still squirms and cries occasionally, such as his highly upset performance with Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

"I told him "I'm sorry, he's a Democrat,' " Zorek said. "Bloomberg said, "That's okay, so was I until recently.' "

Zorek has received e-mail from around the world from visitors to the site, which has even spawned a parody, www.whoisthateatingjeremy.com, featuring digitally altered photos of celebrities chowing down on Jeremy and food products such as Jeremios.

"It's kind of me being a jerk," said site creator Pete Rockwell, a comedian and karaoke host from Toronto.

"I thought the real site was funny in a staged sort of way," Rockwell said, adding that he grew mildly irritated by it. "People have a strong reaction to it. It's polarizing. Some people think he's exploiting the kid."

Zorek denies that, insisting that Jeremy has a normal childhood with play dates and tumbling, art and music classes.

"I don't want people to think we're monsters and that I drag him around and thrust him at people," he said. "I ask people if I can take their picture. If they say no, they say no."

As for Rockwell's site, Zorek takes it as a left-handed compliment.

"I look at this as a positive experience," he said. "There's so much bad news in the world. With all the other stuff that's out there on the Internet, I love the fact that looking at my son makes people smile."

Zorek hopes to put all the e-mails and photos into a book and give it to Jeremy, whose snapshot days are numbered. He starts preschool next year, which will cut down on his celebrity-trolling excursions.

Plus the bigger he gets, the less cute the pictures are.

"At the point where Jeremy can say, "I know you, I see you on TV,' " said Zorek, "we'll pull the plug."

ON THE WEB: See more photos of celebrities with Jeremy Zorek at www.whoisthatwithjeremy.com.

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