Left: Punkin Irene Elizabeth Laughlin, aka Punkin Pie, from The Darwin Exception.
The Phil Spector murder trial is winding down, and I am meditating on the value of friendship. What do we do with "friends" who come out of the woodwork, during these bizarre Hollywood trials? Where do these people come from????
I am fascinated by the demolition of Punkin Pie, Lana Clarkson's supposedly "best" friend (again, remind me not to make friends like this, okay?), yesterday on the witness stand, during rebuttal.
I once endured a three-hour cross-examination, and held up remarkably well (let's hear it for ST JUDE!) and for this reason, I sometimes cringe when I watch COURT TV. I know how it feels to be sneered at by a lawyer, while they add to your words: IN YOUR OPINION!!! IN YOUR OPINION!!!! And what flits through your mind is odds and ends and wise-ass replies that must be suppressed at all cost. For example, when the attorney kept saying IN YOUR OPINION, Cheech Marin's voice kept bubbling up in my consciousness, asking Do you see anybody else up here, dude??
I didn't say it out loud, but the fact that it was right there behind my palate, ready to come out, has become part of my retelling of events. I often wonder if witnesses are blurting things out, like my Cheech and Chong remark, or if they are remembering similar funny things. Sometimes, you can see that they are concentrating on self-restraint, and I'd love to know what they are really thinking.
But with Pie, well, you just stare in amazement.
For those unaware, Pie is a traitor to her friend, and testified for the defense in the Phil Spector trial. She says Lana was seriously bummed and depressed, highlighting Lana's supposedly dejected and very negative mental state in her testimony. This account therefore bolsters the defense's proposition, that Lana Clarkson went to Phil Spector's house to shoot herself with Phil Spector's gun (which she didn't even know was there). This explains, of course, why she put her purse over her shoulder, since we know everyone puts a purse over their shoulder and sits in a stranger's foyer to commit suicide. (((sarcasm)))
Will the jury buy it?
Well, maybe. They have a battery of mercenaries, oops, I mean "experts", extremely well-paid by Spector the billionaire. And then, there is Pie.
After yesterday, I dunno, though. It was a beauty to behold. On a great blog titled The Darwin Exception ("because it's not always survival of the fittest, sometimes the idiots get through") there is blow-by-blow trial coverage, and slices of Pie (you knew I could not resist that metaphor!) are served up piping hot:
[Defense attorney Roger] Rosen then asks the Pie about the Christmas letter. He quotes her the line that was read to the jury by Nili Hudson that says “My Lana, my best friend, my right hand and my inseparable sister, was violently and abruptly taken from me at the hands of Phil Spector.” Rosen asks Pie what she meant by this statement.
Pie then comes out with one of the most insensible, rambling, lamest ass excuses I’ve ever heard in my life - and I had three kids who were forever giving me lame ass excuses. None of them came close to this pile of shit - and this bitch is an adult who should fucking know better.
Pie says that she included this line because she has friends “all over the world from all different walks of life” and she was explaining to them why they hadn’t heard from her, or gotten their cards and letters that she was normally so good at sending. Which you know, would explain why she would say “Well, Lana, my best friend and my soul sister and my right hand and my inseparable sidekick - DIED or PASSED AWAY or KICKED THE BUCKET” - that doesn’t explain why she would include the editorialization of “At the hands of Phil Spector!” I mean, does it? Does that explain it? No - I don’t think so.
Then she tells us “I wanted to BROADLY explain why they hadn’t heard from me…:” BROADLY??? Who the fuck does this bitch think she’s fooling? Broadly would be “my friend died” - that’s broadly. NAMING THE PERP is not BROADLY.
I can’t even believe Rosen is believing this pile of shit. Even he has to realize this is NOT an explanation for what she said - it makes no fucking sense.
She continues (believe it or not), and says “The reason I put it that way was because I was trying not to describe it one way or another as to what happened - because no one knows what happened” (Ummmm….Pie, Phil Spector knows, now doesn’t he?), and some people would know about it and some had no idea. I was trying to be politically correct by not saying too much - I was trying to keep it simple.”
Which is completely and utterly diametrically opposed to what she put it in her Christmas letter - she wasn’t “simple”, she wasn’t “not describing it one way or another” she says Lana died at the hands of another - that’s not “not describing it one way or another.” I think that’s making a pretty clear fucking stand on what you think happened, right?
Who the fuck prepared this witness and agreed to let her get on the stand and say this shit? It makes her look like a fucking moron. And it’s insulting to the jury that she thinks this is a reasonable explanation. If *I* was her - I would have said something halfway fucking credible like “Oh, at this point I was still going through the stages of grief, and when I wrote this letter I was up to “blame” and I was blaming Phil Spector, and wrote this. Of course, as I moved through the stages I realized that this was just my grief speaking, and he wasn’t the only one I blamed during that period - I blamed myself, I blamed her mother, I blamed her other friends - it was just where I was at emotionally, at that time. I no longer blame him and realize that Lana had her own demons and that as hard as it is to accept, that she took her own life, and Mr. Spector had nothing to do with it. But that was then and this is now…”
Anything other than this incredible unbelievable poo she’s slinging from the stand. “Oh I said “Lana died at violently and abruptly at the hands of Phil Spector” - because I was just trying to keep it broad and vague out of respect for the family, because they were recipients of the letter, too. You know, not saying anything one way or the other, mind you. Just keeping it all ginger like and conscious of the family and our mutual friends.” What the fuck?
I swear to God, if any of my friends ever commits suicide, I’m going to send out a Christmas letter, and just out of respect for the family, and to keep it really BROAD and not inject my opinion into it anywhere, I’m just going to say in my letter “My friend was violently and abruptly taken from me at the hands of Tom Hanks.” I mean, you can’t really read anything into that, right - it doesn’t really MEAN anything, just that I’m being vague - since no one knows what happened.
She’s a fucking maroon if I’ve ever seen one.
Dixon gets up to cross examine and he points out that one of the dates in Pie’s date book says that Lana was with her on 1/17/2002 at the Cat Club - just three weeks after her injury to her wrists. He asks if Lana went out partying with that medical apparatus thing on her injuries - the “halo” appliance, and Pie seems to think “Sure! Not a problem”.
He also points out that Pie has no actual recollection of any of these events - can’t remember the venues or the dates or the events other than from reading her notes in her date book. She can’t remember where, exactly, the Bad Company concert was, for instance, just that it was “somewhere in Orange County”.
Dixon then asks when she sent out these Christmas letters, and how many people received them, and she says that she assumes they were sent sometime in December, but that sometimes she didn’t get around to it until January or even March, and that because of everything going on, she was late that year getting the letters out, but it was probably sometime around the New Year. She says that she sends them to like 100 of her closest friends.
Dixon then gets specifically to the last line of the letter, and says “OK - you described this as you being political correct?” Yes. “As not describing one way or another how you felt?” Yes. “as not giving an opinion?” Yes. “But you say that Lana was violently and abruptly taken from you at the hands of Phil Spector! Isn’t that a distinct opinion?”
“No, that was just my way of saying what the situation was.”
“But you could have said that she simply passed away - or even that she passed away at his house…:”
“Yeah, I could have…”:
“Yet you say that she was abruptly taken away at the hands of Phil Spector - that’s an opinion, isn’t it?”
“That was my way of describing the situation.”
“You denied seeing Rick Brody at Ann Marie’s wedding and telling him that you hoped that they would “fry the bastard” when talking about Phil Spector - you said that that was something you would never say, because you didn’t believe it, but isn’t that basically what you said here - that in your opinion, she died at the hands of Phil Spector - and isn’t that what you told to 100 of your closest friends and acquaintances in your Christmas letter?”
“That’s not what I meant.”
“Well, isn’t that what you believed in December of 2003, that your best friend died at the hands of Phil Spector?”
“No, I didn’t believe that.”
“And when you talked to Officer Tomlin, the day that she died, you said that she was never suicidal and never depressed you told him the truth, didn’t you?”
“Because someone told me to say that.”
“Well, who told you to say this in the letter?’
“I didn’t want to hurt people”.
“Who? Was Phil Spector on your mailing list?”
I laughed really hard at that, by the way.
Rosen gets up to redirect and really, he can’t do anything to make anything Pie says sound any more believable, because no one is buying the shit she is trying to sell. It’s just not a saleable product. And all the “Oh, you were trying to encompass the whole situation weren’t you?” “You were trying to be sensitive to the family, right?” that Rosen tries to polish the turd with just makes it sound all the more fucking stupid.
She is finally excused. But she isn’t excused from making me have to listen to her lame ass excuse. My kids really were coming up with better ones than that when they were 10.
Well, it's nice to see her finally get it, but is it enough to convince the jury that she is not to be believed?
Stay tuned, sports fans!