It sure is a trial having to wait for the O.J. trial


Look, summer was nice and all, but I think I speak for most of us when I say: Is it time for the O. J. Simpson trial or what?

God knows we could use a little excitement around here, although to listen to some people, everything is hunky-dory. Some people even say they're sick of all the O. J. hype, if you can believe that.

Like the other night, I'm catching some pre-trial dirt on "Entertainment Tonight" from Leeza Gibbons (who, it says here, is only about the best reporter in the business) when my kid comes in with a copy of "Moby Dick."

So I says: "Geez, why're you wasting your time with books? Forget this Herman Melville guy. What about Juice? Is he gonna fry for offing Nicole and the waiter?"

Right away, the kid gets an attitude and says he's not much interested in what happens to O. J.

Then he says if I can't explain the symbolism behind the Great White Whale, he'll find someone who can.

"Fine, be that way!" I says.

Then I take another pull on my Schlitz tall boy and hit the remote to see if "Hard Copy" has anything new on Juice.

Boy, that's a great show, "Hard Copy." It's like "60 Minutes" without all the, you know, facts.

Still, until they haul O. J. in front of a jury (Sept. 26, check local listings), we got us all kinds of other important issues to stay on top of.

Like Roseanne Arnold. I read in Liz Smith's column -- which, let's face it, is must reading if you're into current events -- that Roseanne is now "close again" with her first husband, Bill Pentland.

On the face of it, this would be unremarkable. After all, lots of people become friends with their exes.

No, what makes this so great is that for years Roseanne did nothing but trash the poor guy and all but liken him to the Great Satan, except you got the feeling Satan is probably kinder and more attentive to a woman's needs.

Meanwhile Liz reports that when Roseanne was asked by Leeza (yes, that Leeza, stay with me here) to describe her feelings about Tom Arnold, she replied: "It's like caring about that bottle of Snapple over there -- I don't give a damn about that, either."

The whole thing makes you a little misty-eyed, doesn't it? Me, I see this prompting a whole new line of Hallmark cards, which people could send to their ex-lovers and which would say something suitably nasty such as: "I care about you like I care about that bottle of Diet Mountain Dew over there."

Is this a great country or what? You think they do this kind of stuff in Cuba?

In Cuba, they're ripping out bathtubs and dragging them down to the beach and sailing off to Miami, for God's sake.

(This is neither here nor there, but I don't think it's a coincidence that as O. J.'s trial approaches, thousands of Cubans are making a run for Florida.

(Look, these people want to see this spectacle as much as we do. And you got something like 75 percent of the homes in South Florida wired for cable. If Castro had any brains, he'd go on national TV and say: "Amigos, we double the sugar cane harvest over the next two weeks, I'll make sure every one of you gets 'Court TV.' "

But forget Roseanne for a moment. How about Lady Di? Princess Diana is now thought to have made a series of harassing phone calls to a London art dealer, who happens to be an intimate male friend.

Yes, yes, that Lady Di! The Princess of Wales! Hanging up on some poor guy like a nutjob! You can imagine how this is playing in England.

Even before this latest scandal, if you mentioned the Royal Family, the people there would whip out large paper bags and place them over their heads, such was the depth of their embarrassment.

Now the Brits are so mortified they've actually taken to hurling themselves from cliffs when the tabloids break the latest in the Di case.

Isn't this good stuff? Sure it is. But the real good stuff starts Sept. 26 when thousands of media people and scores of satellite bTC trucks will descend on L.A., where they'll attempt to find 12 jurors with no pre-conceived notions (wink, wink) as to whether O. J. is guilty or innocent.

There is reason to suspect that 12 such jurors could be found only if a platoon of World War II Japanese soldiers was suddenly discovered hiding out on a remote atoll in the South Pacific, unaware the war was over. This is assuming the atoll doesn't get CNN.

By the way, I read that "A Current Affair" is reporting that the O. J. defense might advance this theory: Nicole and the waiter were whacked by Colombian drug dealers.

Leeza hasn't weighed in on this. I'm sure it's just a matter of time.

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