The Juice

get it out of my head

It was oddly unsettling. When I was traveling across New York State, anticipating the April 8 eclipse with my best friend from college, the subject of O J Simpson, The Juice, came up.

I could not remember why, but MAK noted that he had seen a boxy white vehicle that perhaps reminded him of a Ford Bronco involved in the slow-speed highway chase after Simpson was supposed to surrender to police.

So he asked if Simpson was out of jail. I was fairly sure that he was, which proved to be accurate. He was “released from prison in 2017 after serving about nine years of a 33-year sentence for a kidnapping and armed robbery in Las Vegas.”

As I noted, in 2016, I watched O.J.: Made in America,  “a sprawling five-part documentary on the cable sports network ESPN,” which I still recommend. It’s still on ESPN and available on other platforms as well.

After I watched the series, I  wrote: ” I concluded that 1) O.J. likely did the murders but that 2) the prosecution did not make its case due to the tremendous efforts of the defense team and some of the rulings of Judge Lance Ito.” The most angry I ever saw a mild-manned work colleague was when the not guilty verdict, watched by an estimated 95 million people, was announced.

So it was weird that a person whom I hadn’t even thought about in over six years until that trip died four days later of prostate cancer, the same disease that killed my father and which basketball legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is currently fighting. 

Who are we?

On the trip, I said that the murder trial told a lot about America in terms of race, celebrity, media, and the justice system. Interestingly, Med Page Today touched on some of those in its story: “The public was mesmerized by his ‘trial of the century’ on live TV. His case sparked debates on race, gender, domestic abuse, celebrity justice, and police misconduct.”

Of course, there were countless comments after Simpson’s death. Caitlyn Jenner, “who married Kris Jenner shortly after the Kardashian matriarch’s divorce from Robert Kardashian, who was Simpson’s defense attorney during the murder trial, was among the first to react on social media. ‘Good Riddance #OJSimpson,’ she tweeted.”

I was more interested in the response by Ron Goldman’s family. They called Simpson’s death “a mixed bag of complicated emotions” tied to the civil case Nicole Brown Simpson and Goldman’s families filed in part to direct the proceeds of Simpson’s sort of confessional, If I Did It. They did not receive all they were due in the judgment. And the executor of Simpson’s willl says he’ll ‘do everything’ to ensure Goldman family gets ‘zero’ from the estate.

I’ve now purged the topic from my head. Probably. 

Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. I hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

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