Gwyneth Paltrow was one of the main draws to an authors’ festival in the Hamptons over the weekend, but she — or rather, her entourage — did not make new fans among her fellow writers.
Paltrow was one of about a hundred writers who gathered for the East Hampton Library’s Authors Night on Saturday (Aug. 10), and she was seated — “due to the inflexibility of the alphabet” — next to writer Christina Oxenberg at the fund-raising event. Paltrow was signing her cookbook “It’s All Good,” Oxenberg her latest book “Life Is Short: Read Short Stories.”
Paltrow was a little bit late, Oxenberg writes on her blog, and while that was fine at first, eventually “a line began to form in front of my section of table. These folks were hushed and reverential and had a particularly earnest and focused demeanor and casting furtive eyes around, clearly single minded and clearly without any interest in yours truly. Unless you count the increasingly urgent question they posed, ‘Where is Gwyneth?'”
(Oxenberg, incidentally, is no stranger to celebrity. She’s the daughter of Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia and sister of former “Dynasty” star Catherine Oxenberg.)
When Paltrow did arrive, she was accompanied by her family “and a couple of massive bodyguards,” Oxenberg relates. The crowd grew, and Oxenberg’s spot became a place “upon which to abandon their trash or lean their sorry a**es.”
“So 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,” Oxenberg writes. “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.”
All was not lost for Oxenberg, though: She writes that after the event, she stayed with fellow author Jay McInerney and his wife, Anne Hearst, and they ate and drank and talked until dawn.