Friday 27 April 2018

US Diary: Marriage spat shows Simon's still crazy after all these years

Marriage spat shows Simon's still crazy after all these years

Paul Simon and his wife Edie Brickell at a hearing in Norwalk Superior Court, Connecticut. AP
Paul Simon and his wife Edie Brickell at a hearing in Norwalk Superior Court, Connecticut. AP

Orla Healy

Enquiring minds want to know what Paul Simon could have done to break the heart of his wife of 20 years – fellow Grammy-award winning artist Edie Brickell who, according to police reports, physically attacked the father of her three children last weekend.

The couple, who were arrested on charges of disorderly conduct after a domestic at their Connecticut home last Saturday night, tried to downplay the embarrassing episode as a once-off blip when they were hauled into court on Monday.

Holding the hand of his 49-year-old wife, Simon, 72, successfully lobbied the judge not to issue protective orders insisting the spat was "atypical of us".

But on Thursday, a police report was released by a local news outlet, The Norwalk Hour. According to Sgt. Joseph Farenga, who responded to the 911 call placed by Simon, when the cops arrived at the couple's home, which is gated, with a barbed-wire fence, they could hear "the occupants of the residence loudly screaming at each other".

Once inside, they discovered Simon with "a superficial cut to his ear" and Brickell "who smelled of alcohol" with a bruise on her wrist. Brickell told Farenga she decided to "confront Simon on something which he'd done that broke her heart". She also said that because her husband cannot "handle being criticised in any manner", he then became "confrontational with her".

The report does not explain what Simon did to upset Brickell so much, but it does quote Brickell telling Ferenga "there were other physical confrontations in the relationship".

Sgt Farenga says he was further disturbed by the fact that Brickell had a lump on her head. "No matter how much I asked Brickell if Simon had injured her more than what I saw on her wrist, she would not say that he did and there was no evidence to suggest the lump on her head was caused by Simon or that it occurred that night," Farenga wrote in his report.

The couple, who have an encore date in the dock on May 16, declined to comment on the leaked documents. They did, however, release a new song together on her SoundCloud page last Wednesday; a folksy, acoustic duet with a chorus that goes: "I wouldn't trade places with anyone, none of them. Because I'd like to get to know you again". They might have been better sticking with the sound of silence.

How to be the good (ex) wife

Fans of The Good Wife are getting a kick out of a post-nup recently filed in the Manhattan County Clerk's Office. Six years after then NY State Governor Eliot Spitzer was forced out of office after being revealed to be "Client No 9" in a federal prostitution probe, his ex-wife Silda – who was ridiculed for standing by her man – is getting a buy-out.

The 56-year-old Harvard law grad, who is now a partner in a hedge fund that invests in environmental opportunities, has negotiated a deal that would do the small screen character she inspired – Alicia Florrick, as played by Julianna Margulies – proud. We're talking a $7.5m tax-free cash lump sum plus $240,000 a year until she dies or remarries.

She also gets the couple's Fifth Avenue apartment ("or any replacement primary residences of similar size, location, and quality"), a new car "no more than every five years", plus entertainment and activities expenses.

As well as the usual healthcare and medical insurance coverage, Silda's ex will pony up to pay for an accountant, a housekeeper and a part-time assistant. He has also agreed to fork out "up to $100,000 per year to donate to the charity of her choice".

As one observer dryly noted, so much more satisfying than "consciously uncoupling".


All eyes on young Farrow

Ronan Farrow might be playing the Frank Sinatra thing a bit too hard. The precocious 26-year-old, who landed his own TV show after his mom floated the intriguing notion that Sinatra and not Woody Allen was his biological father, found himself under intense scrutiny Tuesday night when guests attending Time magazine's 100 Most Influential Gala were amused to discover that his piercing blue eyes owe more to coloured contact lenses than genetics.

"You could see the outline of his contacts," an eagle-eyed source told the New York Post, which did some digging to confirm that Ronan "is blind as a bat" and wears prescription contacts that augment the blueness of his eyes.

Farrow, who appeared to be unfazed by the fact that everyone was staring into his eyes, had far more interesting things to talk about. Namely his relationship with the future Mrs George Clooney.

"I know Amal," he bragged before turning the spotlight back on to himself. "I have the utmost sympathy for her, having been in that boat myself – not of marrying Clooney, but getting a sudden frenzy of celebrity-centric coverage. She's a really substantial lawyer."

Reese hopes celebrity sells

REESE Witherspoon is planning to raise the bar on the celebrity lifestyle-selling game. And then some. The actress/ producer/budding entrepreneur is close to launching her Goop-like brand which, she revealed, will be called Draper James (in a nod to her grandparents and not, as some assumed, a certain Mad Man).

The business will start by selling bed and bath products, kitchenware, furniture, stationery, swimwear, fragrances and cosmetics that "emphasise [Witherspoon's] Southern roots and personal style".

Unlike Gwyneth, who is keeping Goop strictly cyber and super-elite, Witherspoon wants to open bricks-and-mortar stores – the first of which is slated for next year. Game on, Gwyneth.

Sunday Independent

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