The Corner

Climbing Mount Improbable

I can only fantasize about grasping the nuance of language, appreciating the sweeping allusions to history and literature, touching the pinnacle of aesthetic glory that come with having dinner with Gwyneth Paltrow and Madonna:

Oscar-winning US actress Gwyneth Paltrow feels dinner talk is far more interesting in her adopted homeland Britain than back in her native country.

“I love the English lifestyle, it’s not as capitalistic as America. People don’t talk about work and money, they talk about interesting things at dinner,” she told “NS,” the weekend magazine supplement of daily Portuguese newspaper Diario de Noticias on Saturday.

“I like living here because I don’t fit into the bad side of American psychology. The British are much more intelligent and civilized than the Americans,” the 34-year-old added.

Paltrow, who won a best actress Oscar for 1998′s “Shakespeare in Love,” lives in London with British band Coldplay’s frontman Chris Martin whom she wed in 2003.

She said having US pop star Madonna, 48, who married British film director Guy Ritchie six years ago, nearby was another advantage to living in London.

“She’s like an older sister. Everything I have gone through, she went through ten times worse and ten times longer. She gives me good advice about how to say no and take care of myself,” said Paltrow.

Update: From a reader:

This post is probably the most petulant thing I’ve ever read on the

Corner. Set aside the fame and the easy targets on the backs of the

principals in that story and consider for a moment whether Paltrow

might be right.

Me: ERRRRRR. No sale. I am an enormous anglophile. And I actually kind of like Paltrow. But this email is ludicrous. What on earth makes anybody think that Paltrow’s “America” is anything like the real thing? She grew up in the belly of the Hollywood beast. And now that she’s getting away from Hollywood (oh so far away; Madonna is her neighbor in a tony area of London where she lives with a member of a rock band) she’s fitting in by pissing on her native country in a perfectly fashionable way. Indeed, she doesn’t even live in England. She lives amongst a global cultural elite of cosmopolitan flibbertygibbets who think they’re the only people in the world who deserve to be outrageously wealthy. Maybe if she didn’t like the conversation in America, it had to do with the people she chose to have dinner with rather than the country in which she chose to have it.

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