To promote her new cookbook, It's All Good, and to raise money for a public library, Gwyneth Paltrow attended the East Hampton Library's Authors Night on Saturday. So how did her appearance go over with other writers at the event? Eh, not so great.
Author's night at East Hampton Library highjacked by movie stars with ghost- written cookbooks. http://t.co/CaDr3XMVJF— Jay McInerney (@JayMcInerney) August 12, 2013
McInerney is, of course, referring to Paltrow. The Bright Lights, Big City author linked to a blog post by fellow Author's Night participant Christina Oxenberg, who was there to promote her book of short stories, Life Is Short. Oxenberg's website is, at the moment, down from all the traffic, but thankfully USA Today (and others) transcribed her rant/perfectly reasonable account of the evening.
Because of her last name, Oxenberg was seated next to Paltrow. As you might expect, their table was quickly swamped by people anxious to see Paltrow, described by Oxenberg as "the divinity in question" who "arrived with hubby, children and a couple of massive bodyguards."
The Paltrow-curious crowds eventually grew too large for Oxenberg, who decided to take revenge on her tablemate:
"I abandoned my post and took that opportunity to roam the great tent and greet my fellow authors. Which is when I saw the food table, and suddenly I knew what needed doing. I made a plate of miniature sloppy hamburgers, stinky steak sandwiches and the like and hauled it back to my piece of table.
"Gwyneth's bodyguards blocked my re-entry despite my assurance I was a just an author and pointing at my name tag, 'No!' they growled, body blocking me. So I was forced to crawl under the table. And there I sat with my meat products, wafting the excellent smells toward my sleek vegan neighbor. She ignored the siren smells of protein. We never did say hello, although I did try to sell my book to her sleek vegan children. No bites."
That's certainly one way to deal with the situation: by sitting under the table at a charity event and wafting the smell of meat at your famous and one-time vegan tablemate.
Tuesday afternoon, two days after the initial blog post went up, Oxenberg wrote a Facebook post explaining that, ha ha, the whole thing was just a joke.
Allow me to clarify, the divinity Ms. Paltrow was perfection itself. Gorgeous, and sweet and thoroughly professional...I'm delighted so many readers found my account amusing, I thoroughly enjoyed myself that day. And frankly I was grateful for the material as I knew it would make writing my Sunday blog all the easier. It wrote itself. It's just that I then forced the episode through the meat-grinder that is my sense of humor, merely to jazz things up. Certainly not with the intention of hurting anybody's feelings, or ridiculing anyone, that is not my style. Honestly, I have no beef with Gwyneth!
As my colleague noted last week, news tends to slow down in August.
[Image via AP]
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