Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Life Is Full of Tradeoffs

I eat a salad at lunch so I can have Blue Bell peach ice cream for dessert.

I love the delicious, sensuous scent of Shalimar perfume on my skin. At $115 for 2.5 ounces, I indulge in it, but I refuse to step inside a Bath & Body Works Shop to be tempted by bubble bath, body lotions or scented soap.

I don't subscribe to cable television so I have more disposable cash with which to purchase whatever books I want during the month.

And here comes my latest tradeoff.

Despite the titillation value of the upcoming O.J. Simpson tell-all, I'm going to forego buying it so that I can live with myself.

On Tuesday, Denise Brown, sister of Nicole Brown Simpson, called for a boycott of If I Did It, O.J.'s book about her sister's 1994 murder along with friend Ron Goldman.

According to USA Today, "Denise Brown said she was 'shocked and horrified' to learn that a literary agent for the Goldman family had reached a deal to publish the controversial book."

That literary agent, Sharlene Martin (of Martin Literary Management) says the book will be published with Simpson's original manuscript intact, but include commentary.

On Monday, a spokesman for Martin announced she had a deal to publish the O.J. Simpson book, but she did not name the New York publisher. It's expected that the publisher will be identified today.

Interestingly enough, according to USA Today, Martin delayed the naming of the publisher to give the house "time to prepare for an expected rush of publicity."

That delay also gave Denise Brown an opportunity to jump into the fray.

The Goldman family was awarded rights to the book in order to help them satisfy the $38 million judgment they won against O.J. after he was aquitted of the murders in 1995. The Goldman family has also created a Ron Goldman Foundation for Justice, to which they claim a portion of the sales proceeds from the book will go. The new foundation was set up to help victims of violent crime. No announcement was made as to what percentage of the sales will go to this foundation.

I have to admit a lot of sympathy for Denise Brown's position. She accused the Goldman family of hypocrisy for publishing a book that they had condemned when Simpson first announced his intention to publish it.

An attorney for Fred Goldman, Ron's father, pointed out that Brown and her family had first "sought a share of possible profits from the book for themselves" according to USA Today.

It makes my skin creep to think of ANYONE profiting from the death of Nicole and Ron. I can't remember ever associating the word "evil" with an inanimate object before, but this whole project is misbegotten, and I wish the book-buying public would just join together to help the book die.

God bless him, but I think Fred Goldman's rage against O.J. has morphed into something much darker, a need to crush Simpson and to thwart him at any cost.

I, for one, will forego the opportunity for a momentary guilty thrill in reading the book in order to be able to look myself in the mirror the next morning.

UPDATE: Right after I published this post, I received a copy of today's Publishers Lunch, which reported the new publishing house for If I Did It: " . . . Eric Kampmann's Beaufort Books (distributed by Midpoint), and a Reuters piece cites a publication date of October 3."

7 comments:

ERiCA said...

It makes my skin creep to think of ANYONE profiting from the death of Nicole and Ron.

Agree. The whole greed factor behind it horrifies me. As does an Oct 3 release date. Cripes.

Erica <-- pleased to find another person who prefers reading books over cable television

Maya Reynolds said...

Erica: Thanks for commenting.

I really, really hope that the world doesn't run out and buy this book.

Mitz said...

And it takes up yet another publishing slot....just like other celebrity-penned crap (sorry).

Gloomy day getting gloomier and gloomier.

BTW: My shrink is concerned about my book buying habit (too many - is there such a thing?) I hardly drink - a bottle of wine lasts until vinegar. I don't smoke. I've been celibate since the last boyfriend dropped me three years ago (not going through THAT again). So I READ and buy books. Deal with it!

Cranky Mitzi!

alliestp said...

This is blood money and nothing Mr. Goldman could say now would make me believe that he gives a darn about his son. He is only donating SOME of the profits to the foundation. What's he doing with the rest? He's profiting from his son's death and that's as disgusting as what OJ did.

God bless Denise Brown. You know her hate and anger to OJ are there, but she's no hyprocrite. I will not buy this book and will give a tongue lashing to any of my reader friends who do. I've also told my library that they shouldn't stock it. I'd advise others to do the same, since your tax dollars pay for the books they buy.

Peter L. Winkler said...

I have never had much interest in the Simpson case, but you have to have had your sensory organs destroyed not to have some of this endless story seep through your filters.

I agree with you Maya about Fred Goldman's unhealthy obsession with Simspon and in somehow avenging his son's murder. I understand what Fred Goldman's motivation is, but have always wondered how he gets so many attorneys to keep working on this. So far, Goldman hasn't been able to pry a penny from Simpson, and I doubt this book will sell that well. BTW, I have no interest in reading it, so I don't have to grapple with the ethical dilemma that would be presented if I was curious.

Gretchen said...

I won't be buying this book. It's sickening that it was even written in the first place.

I didn't know that OJ was Goldman's former son-in-law. Interesting fact.

Maya Reynolds said...

Gretchen: Thanks for catching my error. I must have been more tired than I thought when I posted that item. Of course, O.J. was NOT Goldman's son-in-law. Thanks!