Gwyneth Paltrow is being sued for an alleged hit-and-run ski accident

Gwyneth Paltrow is ready for 'Good Morning America' in New York

I have no problem with believing the worst about Gwyneth Paltrow. I believe she’s an ignorant, careless, word-salad-speaking pseudo-intellectual who only cares about fleecing rich women for profit. I believe she’s the kind of rude a–hole who tells her friends that they’re fat to their faces, and who bitches out young women who refuse to acknowledge that SHE invented yoga. But do I believe that Gwyneth is the kind of person who would recklessly crash into someone while skiing and not do anything to help the man she injured? Well… actually, I probably would believe that?

Gwyneth Paltrow is facing a lawsuit from a Utah doctor who claims the actress crashed into him while skiing in February 2016. Terry Sanderson, the man suing the Oscar-winning actress, alleged Paltrow, 46, “was skiing out of control” at the Deer Valley Resort in Park City, Utah, in court documents obtained by KUTV, a local news station in Utah. Sanderson is asking for damages in excess of $3.1 million.

A rep for Paltrow tells PEOPLE, “This lawsuit is completely without merit. Anyone who reads the facts will realize that.”

Sanderson described the incident as “a hit-and-run ski crash at Deer Valley, Utah” where Paltrow allegedly “skied out of control and hit” him in the back, adding she “got up, turned and skied away, leaving Sanderson stunned, lying in the snow, seriously injured,” according to his lawsuit. “Gwyneth Paltrow knew it was wrong to slam into Dr. Sanderson’s back, knocking him down, landing on top of him, knocking him out and then leave the scene of the skit crash she caused, but she did it anyway.”

The doctor also claimed a Deer Valley ski instructor, Eric Christiansen, who accompanied the actress, filed a false report alleging Paltrow did not cause the crash. Christiansen, Deer Valley Resort and two unnamed resort employees are also being sued. A spokesperson for Deer Valley Resort said the resort couldn’t comment on pending legal matters. Sanderson alleged in his lawsuit that he suffered injuries including a “permanent traumatic brain injury,” four broken ribs, pain, suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, emotional distress and disfigurement.

[From People]

Does it sound like Gwyneth? I mean… sort of, right? That’s the thing – we’re already primed to believe the worst about her. If you told me that Gwyneth promoted the killing of hobos to improve one’s skin tone, I would say “that’s SO Gwyneth.” I totally believe that she would be the kind of rich person who would get a ski instructor to cover up what she did. That being said… this happened in 2016 and we’re just hearing about it now? I don’t know. If Gwyneth ever ran me over with her skis, I would be giving local, national and international interviews in a neck brace for the next ten months. “Yes, I saw her straw hair and her look of smug disgust and I knew Gwyneth Paltrow was the one who took my spleen.”

Gwyneth Paltrow heads to 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon' from the Whitby Hotel

Photos courtesy of WENN.

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100 Responses to “Gwyneth Paltrow is being sued for an alleged hit-and-run ski accident”

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  1. Millennial says:

    Well, don’t they usually advise you to keep quiet until the full extent of the injuries are known?

    Anyways, I totally believe it. My guess is she just thought the guy fell over and was fine and didn’t bother to actually make sure, like a normal, nice human being would because she didn’t want to have to interact with a peasant.

    • HelloSunshine says:

      Yeah, they usually advise you to wait to file for things like this until your doctors have a better idea of the extent of injuries. Things like ski accidents, car accidents, etc. can cause injuries that take a while to fully figure out what’s going on, what treatment will be tried and all that so the cost is up in the air for a while. I would assume you have a better case if you/your doctor can say exactly what’s wrong and justify the treatment and cost of it.

      • jan90067 says:

        I read an article which states another witness saw the whole thing (and called for help), incl. the instructor skiing back and telling this man, still on the ground that it was HIS fault for standing there (he was standing facing DOWNHILL, assessing where he was) and that Goop “had the right of way”.

        I TOTALLY believe Goop is at fault. Just the fact that she skied off, and sent her “employee” to “check” (ie: lay fault) on the man…. UGH! I just *can’t* with her and her entitlement!

      • La says:

        That instructor is a moron then. The first rule of skiing is that skiers downhill have the right of way. I got taken out a few years ago by someone out of control behind me and all I can say is thank god I was wearing a helmet. Not the least bit surprised Goop would try to pull something like that.

      • SK says:

        UNLESS the skier who is downhill is in a blind spot – then they are at fault. I’ve seen it so many times – someone stops somewhere where no one uphill can see them and then gets taken out. If that was the case here, that would explain why the instructor yelled at him.

        Nevertheless, accidents happen all the time on the slopes and the people involved should always make sure that the other person/s are okay before moving on.

    • ds says:

      yeah, if nothing it’s a matter of being a decent human to stop and check if the person is ok and if they need help getting up. These things to happen all the time but not once did I smash into someone, or someone at me, withouth checking if everything is ok. Best case scenario – you have a laugh about it and someone to nod to if you meet them in the ski bar. This is so rude. And her instructor was even worse. Apparently he told the guy it was his fault right away.

    • Swack says:

      Even if the guy “just fell over” I would be stopping (if possible) to see if he was okay. It’s what I was taught growing up. It’s what I taught my kiddos and try and teach my grandkiddos.

      • minx says:

        Exactly. How many times does Goop have to show us who she is? She’s really just that arrogant and entitled.

    • CROWHOOD says:

      “ I would be giving local, national and international interviews in a neck brace for the next ten months. “Yes, I saw her straw hair and her look of smug disgust and I knew Gwyneth Paltrow was the one who took my spleen.”

      That was amazing. I cackled So loud. But the last time I said Goop’s Instagram activity felt fake to me somebody commented that I needed To look “look at myself and see why that would bother me” 🙄

    • Mon says:

      Actually, I think they were probably in talks. This was clearly a thing right away since her ski instructor filed some kind of statement. So her lawyers got together with his lawyers and were probably trying to come to some kind of financial settlement/agreement before this went public. For her, it’s way more important to keep this kind of story quiet than to spend some money. But if the guy wanted this much – millions – then that’s probably too much even for her. These kinds of talks can take a couple of years – easily.

  2. Kittycat says:

    Accidents happen all the time at ski resorts so I bet he signed a waiver.

    • Snowflake says:

      He can still sue and possibly recover money, even with a waiver. At least according to one business law class I took. Lol

    • Christy says:

      Pretty sure the waiver would be as to actions against the resort (and would not cover knowingly false statements made by employees) and not against third parties.

    • BB says:

      I have been skiing my whole life and live in Tahoe. I have NEVER signed a waiver at any resort.

      • Sister Carrie says:

        When you purchase a ticket you are in essence agreeing to the waiver (usually small print on the back of the actual ticket). So you don’t literally sign anything.

    • Dusk says:

      No waiver/contract can cover wrongdoers for things like negligence. That part of the waiver would be deemed illegal in court.

  3. Eric says:

    It will now be known as The Paltrow Plow, or its usage can be verbed such as
    “Yesterday on the slopes, I paltrowed into a fellow skier”
    meaning I hit someone and fled the scene.

  4. Justwastingtime says:

    It’s so dangerous to have an out of control skier on the slopes. I once took our babysitter ski to with us as she told me she could ski. The first day I watched her go down a green run nearly slamming into several people and all I could think of was that her stupidity is gonna kill someone. She was grounded to beginner group lessons for the trip.

  5. Ash says:

    Wait how would he have known it was her if she was wearing goggles and a helmet, like if he was knocked out how could he have had the wherewithal to recognize her.This feels fishy especially since it’s three years later.

    • Tw says:

      I don’t think this is being disputed. Her instructor admits it was her but that she didn’t cause it or do anything out of control.

    • InsertNameHere says:

      The Guardian has a bit more detail – apparently the instructor started yelling “what did you do?” and that that was Gwyneth Paltrow, and then left with her.

    • Haha Muntz says:

      She strikes me as a non-helmet wearing skier who doesn’t want to muss up her hair.

      • Kerfuffle says:

        Don’t know about that, but considering that this guy is talking about a traumatic brain injury it sounds like he wasn’t wearing a helmet himself.

      • Dana marie says:

        You can still have traumatic brain injuries even with a helmet on due to the impact. Even if you head doesn’t hit the ground, it can still be injured by the blow of the impact. For example : falling off a top bunk bed but never hitting your head. I just attended a GI conference and heard a TBI practitioner/expert speaking about this topic. She said some of her patients include horseback riders ( impact from constant jolting up and down) and soccer players (hitting ball with head). Some consequences include chronic GI issues. Fascinating topic for GI health practitioners like me.

      • Betsy says:

        @Dana Marie – really? I got my bell rung a number of times as a child and have been suffering from mystery gut issues for a while. I never knew there might be a connection (though I do know the gut is other main sources of neurotransmitters).

      • Raina says:

        @haha, nah I really don’t think she cares about her hair.
        She Probably loads up on gear and is the best dressed yoga neck breaker of all time.
        Maybe she was starving at the time… (somewhere in the distance, someone is laughing at the fact I said ‘maybe…)
        I’ll Paltrow plow anyone if I’m hungry, though.
        Just sayin

  6. Shrute’s beet farm says:

    I didn’t have difficulty believing this until he alleged G’s ski instructor filed a false report on her behalf. Now, it strikes me that he’s trying to undermine the official report of the accident as a cash grab.

    • Ellie says:

      My thoughts exactly. I’ve seen expensive injuries but $3.1 million in damages. Dude.

      • Rhys says:

        It’s a standard procedure to sue for a high number and hope the judge will award you at least some of it.

      • I don’t know…IF he is a doctor and IF he is 46 and IF he has been and will continue to be unable to work…totally guessing, but if you average, say, 100K a year and he has been unable to work for the last 3 years, that alone would be over 2 million in lost income at age 65. Factor in medical costs plus pain and suffering – 3.1 million seems reasonable.
        But that’s a lot of ‘ifs’ and those details are not in the story.

      • InsertNameHere says:

        BFG – He’s 72.

      • lucy2 says:

        I would assume medical bills, plus lost income.

      • Veronica S. says:

        They start high because it considers long term damage. An older doctor, particularly one involved in surgical cases, could easily make between $350-$650K and have malpractice insurance that’s half of that. Medical bills can also rack up quickly in that time, and often you’re directed not to pay them if there’s a pending court case. As far as numbers go, that’s not really so high when you consider that he’s upper class himself.

        This being said, a high number rarely means high payout. My sister was in an auto accident that damaged her spine. They shot high – several hundred dollars – because there was permanent injury and years of lost income while she was in rehab. She only wound up with about $100K or so, which more or less covered the cost of her medical bills and the debts she’d racked up in that time. Otherwise, she basically had to start over. It was no grand payout, that’s for certain.

  7. Mar says:

    I think people see $$$ when a celebrity is involved in any accident.

  8. Rapunzel says:

    I think the story is legit. My guess is that we haven’t heard about it until now because they were trying to settle it quietly outside of public view. But Goop and her people probably couldn’t/wouldn’t make a proper deal, so now we have a public lawsuit.

    Goop is probably all, “This guy was only able to ski cause I was skiing first! How dare he blame me for his accident!”

    • Moneypenny says:

      Exactly, just came to write the same thing. Plaintiff has been trying to settle behind the scenes since the accident. Talks weren’t going anywhere, so he filed the suit.

      She hit him, they unconsciously uncoupled and she skied away.

  9. Redgrl says:

    Why am I so not surprised at this? On another note, as a snowboarder, I find these articles about skiers crashing into each other at Deer Valley rather darkly funny. If I recall correctly DV is one of the few remaining snotty resorts that bans snowboarders. A friend of ours (a skier) went and was teasing us about that. He came back all annoyed…because he had been hit and knocked over by a skier (luckily not hurt).

    • BB says:

      I was a much more reckless skier than I ever was a snowboarder

    • Salted Watermelon says:

      I found it very fitting that this happened at Deer Valley. Yes, they are a snotty resort who banned snowboarders. If memory serves correctly, the lodge there is quite something – not your typical ski lodge. Such a snooty ski place. Out of all the amazing ski resorts in Utah, of course Goop was at Deer Valley. Of course she was. (For the record, I’m a skier not a snowboarder. I just hate Deer Valley.)

  10. Originaltessa says:

    How embarrassing for her that she only recently learned how to ski. The real manor born take their first lesson at 3 years old.

    • Jessica says:

      Not entirely true. I can ski black diamonds, and I would love to have the funds to be able to take a private advanced class. It is the same with golf.

      • Originaltessa says:

        Jessica, the report is she was out of control. I interpreted that as she was learning to ski. An intermediate at least has a semblance of control.

  11. Justwastingtime says:

    Maybe Kaiser could link to the epic Goop video of her almost getting her child run over on the back of her moped. She seems impulsive and I can totally see it happening

  12. Meganbot2000 says:

    It’s very normal for these things to take years to become public. It would be far more dodgy if he’d spoken to the press straight away.

  13. Lizzie says:

    i’ll say this….i don’t know what i believe here. i think it probably happened but a lot less dramatically than he is portraying. accidents like this happen all the time at ski resorts – it is a dangerous sport. if you are an experienced skiier and you see someone out of control, it is kind of your personal responsibility to try to avoid them and if it is really bad – report it to ski patrol. a lot of times someone slams you, you fall, you say “are you ok?” and if the person says “yes” you probably just get up and ski away. perhaps he thought he was ok and then realized he wasn’t. i guess my biggest question is how would he have identified the ski assailant had it not been a famous person with instant face recognition? what if it were just a joe schmo out there bumbling on the slopes? how would he know how to report it, which instructor to go to and who to name int he suit?

  14. Jess says:

    It’s almost impossible to recognize people in all their ski gear, but maybe she thought he was perfectly fine and went about her business, maybe he was perfectly fine and injured himself that badly at another point on the trip and saw a chance to make some money, maybe she’s an asshole and really did this. Who knows, hopefully it’s not a cash grab, I’m skeptical of these when it comes to rich celebs, would he be filing this suit if it was a regular old joe?! You run the risk of accidents when you ski around so many other people though.

    We went to Breckenridge last year and my husband refused lessons, against my better judgment I went along with it since our trip was so short and classes were half or all day, but instantly I knew it was a bad call. There were hundreds of people zooming by us constantly, to the point that I had a panic attack and couldn’t do it anymore. My husband picked it up quickly and did ok, but I can’t believe they let anyone just go out on the slopes without proper training! It’s so dangerous, as I sat watching and practicing on the teeny tiny slopes I saw the emergency responders go by 5 times in just a few hours, they were hauling injured people off the mountain left and right, and people constantly running into each other then zooming off again without even helping each other up, it was hectic chaos, I’ll never go to a busy resort like that again, and I’ll take lessons next time!

  15. Jo says:

    I kind of think that Goop grew up privileged enough that she’s probably a better skier than that…

    • Moneypenny says:

      Yeah, she might only be denying this because it is pretty off brand for her to not be a fabulous skier.

  16. minx says:

    It does sound like her, yep.

  17. CA Family Code says:

    Any time I see her I think of a line from Sex in the City–Carrie is going to see a well know shrink. Stanford says, “she’s the best, she’s Gwenyth Paltrow’s psychiatrist” Carrie asks why Paltrow has to see a shrink, Stanford says “she suffers from high self-esteem” (writers shade)

  18. Ader says:

    “Tells her friends their fat to their faces.”

    [Begin Vent] I used to be “friends” with a piece of crap like this. For years. She’d disguise it as concern: Oh, I just want you to be your best; Oh, clothes will just look so much better on you. Asshole. (Mind you, I was about 10 – 15 pounds over weight at the time.) She once admonished me for not having kids; “selfish” apparently. Plus, she was one of those people who ALWAYS talked shit about everyone behind their backs. Everyone!

    She turned out to be one of those holy-roller conservatives who is convinced of her own goodness. Nay, greatness. I must admit, I hope that one day “karma” (the pop-culture understanding; not the real thing) finds her ugly ass where she lives and takes a comprehensive dump all over the place.
    [Vent End]

    • Ader says:

      And, before someone jumps on my back, I mean “ugly” as in “ugly personality” / unkind.

    • minx says:

      Good that you are not in touch with her anymore. She wasn’t a friend.

    • Hoot says:

      @Ader – Overbearing, self-righteous people are crazy-making. Lol, enjoyed your vent because I know a similar person. I removed her from my life long ago, and it sounds like you have done the same. Life’s too short, right?

  19. Cara says:

    Several things can be true here: Gwyneth is a complete a**. She probably crashed into another skier. (Maybe she was out of control, maybe she wasn’t. Even experienced skiers can hit a patch of ice / lose control of their bodies.) Maybe she didn’t check if he was ok.
    But skiing is a dangerous sport. People crash (into each other and into trees) all the time.
    Suing someone for 3 million for a common ski accident seems like a money grab. Any lawyers – is there even legal standing here? Most ski resorts have waivers – would those apply to other skiers as well?

  20. Christina says:

    If his injuries were as bad as he claims, how did she not get hurt if she crashed into him? Am I missing something?

  21. Sister Carrie says:

    PSIA ski instructor here: yes, you can sue both the individual who caused your injury and the resort as well. Though you do sign a waiver, if you can prove the resort was negligent in any way (trail not clearly marked; open trail that should be closed) then it is at fault.
    As far as the instructor is concerned, he exhibited seriously unprofessional behavior. First, in leaving the scene of an accident (even if your student was not at fault); second, in revealing your student’s name (privacy issue); third, yelling at a paying customer is frowned upon from a PR and liability point of view.
    That said, I hope I never have to teach the straw-haired pile of pompousity.

    • Justwastingtime says:

      Question for you, I ski in Idaho and it’s not common to have private instructors who are not associated with the resort. Presumably this is the case at deer valley?

      If so, the ski instructors behavior (in leaving an injured skier) would presumably make the resort more liable?

      • Sister Carrie says:

        The resort would be liable only for employees of that resort. When I teach off my mountain, I do not wear a jacket that identifies me as a ski instructor, nor does any other instructor as far as my experience goes. That’s why I assumed the instructor was working for DV because how else would the injured party even know the guy was an instructor?
        Where in Idaho are you? I love the Teton Valley area and am planning on moving out next year.

    • Justwastingtime says:

      Sister Carrie I live in the la area but one of my siblings has a ski house in Ketchum so I have been skiing at Sun Valley for the last ten years or so. Actually to be accurate I stopped skiing five years ago after a bad (car ) accident but I still go with my family and our kids ski. Really like the small town vibe in Ketchum much nicer than Vail or park city.

  22. Cherie says:

    A couple of things – the waiver is for the actual resort, notnotjer skiers. Just like any public area, you can sue someone if their negligence causes you injury. As a skier you are responsible for avoiding obstacles downhill ie other skiers. Same if you hit a golf ball into someone or a vehicle etc.
    As to Recognizing her, on a sunny day in Colorado you’ll find peeps skiing in T-shirt’s, maybe just sunglasses etc. I know I don’t ski days I have to wear 17 layers.

  23. Case says:

    After seeing the extent to which Johnny Depp is protected for his behavior, I completely believe this. I totally believe the ski instructor lied for her, and that she’s using the “he just wants my money” excuse to lie, too.

  24. Americano says:

    Sounds plausible to me. People can be such jerks on the ski hill, so why not her? I’ve had people crash into me from behind and leave without apologizing so many times. Thankfully, I wasn’t hurt. Gwyneth probably thought the guy was fine and wanted to get out of there to save face. In the end, it’s turned into a bigger mess for her. She really should learn to be a better person.

  25. Tiffany says:

    I was gonna straight up say, ‘1st world problems, amirite?’.

    Then I remembered that I am stupid angry with my current coffee press and have dedicated lots of hours to researching a new one to purchase.

  26. pru says:

    Wasn’t she the one who cut off a bus when picking her kids up from school on a moped a couple of years ago? I totally believe she could be oblivious to people around her.

  27. carolyn says:

    Maybe he‘s suing, because she never stopped or acknowledged or did the right thing. Maybe she didn‘t stop because she had some wine at lunch and knew what that would mean if anyone smelled her breath.

    • Harryg says:

      There’s a good book by Dan Ariely about how when you don’t get an apology when you feel you should, you get enormously irritated. Simple “I’m sorry” is really hard for some people to say.

  28. SM says:

    I don’t know. With the stick up her ass I have my doubts Goop could ever ski in out of control fashion. And then while I would believe she would recommend killing peasants if she was convinced it improved the skin, I am not sure getting up and fleeing the scene when the person you crashed into is on the ground is a think equal to that. Also if she never approached him and was wearing all helmet and googles, how one cam be sure thay it was in fact Goop?

  29. Harryg says:

    OMG it sounds like a movie about obnoxious people.

  30. Katrina says:

    Lawyer here. The lawsuit is requesting punitive damages so that is why the number is so high.

    • Ali says:

      So going for punitive damages he’s saying she was intentional in her act that caused his injury or it was gross negligence. Both are a stretch, unless like someone else said she was drinking prior which seems highly unlikely, – I don’t know do people drunk ski? Is this a thing? – so the lawsuit sounds aimed at her because she’s rich and a snob who didn’t say excuse me or I’m sorry.

  31. Pandy says:

    I call BS on this story. Like Gwynnie didn’t exit the womb as an expert skier. Sniff.

  32. Who ARE These People? says:

    I’m glad I don’t ski.

    • Dusk says:

      After hearing about all those horrible accidents (Natasha Richardson, Schumacher, and others, some of whom wore helmets but were still severely injured), I will never ski again. Never was good at it but the risks just don’t seem worth it.

  33. Shelley says:

    Meh. I don’t know.

  34. hogtowngooner says:

    I can’t stand Goopy Paltrow and her smugness so I believe she didn’t even check if the guy was OK, which is the decent thing to do. SHE wasn’t hurt so who cares, right?

    She and Chris Martin were papped once taking their kids to or from school on scooters, and Gwyneth, without even looking, cut in front a school bus that had to slam on the brakes to avoid hitting her and whatever kid she had on the back. She’s an a-hole who lives in her own little bubble of privilege, looking down on the rest of us poors.

  35. Dusk says:

    I believe she will settle this out of court and the guy will get 50% of what he’s asking for.

    A lot of people born into and raised in 1% households (her parents weren’t super rich but very well connected (Spielberg as godfather)) are intelligent about their privilege. She doesn’t get to brush her serious character flaws off by saying she was raised daddy’s girl and is just so successful (she said she can’t pretend to be someone who makes 20K a year) people are just jealous and threatened (26 years old with an Oscar so she was a big threat and couldn’t make friends). She is vomit-inducing with her 1%-I’m-so-hip-and-cultured boasting about knowing the best places to get XX when in XX when she is just an ignorant dumb-dumb (she was so put off by some LA girl asking her where she got her jeans she wanted to move back to London where people are more cultured and talk about history and, you know, stuff). However the way she conducted her split in public and doesn’t use her kids for PR gets points with me.

    • Carol says:

      “However the way she conducted her split in public and doesn’t use her kids for PR gets points with me.”

      You had me until this part. By saying ‘we are both consciously uncoupling blah blah” and that’s “Chris and I are the best of friends now that we are divorced”, more b.s. Please. She got dumped okay. He didn’t want to be around her unless he had to. And now that her kids are little older when they can understand that parents don’t have to be married to be a happy family so that’s when he decided it’s good to be apart and everyone wins. He’s had flings way before they got divorced. And Goop probably decided enough is enough and agreed they both needed to uncouple. Her pride is too big to be a submissive wife.

      As for her not using her kids for PR. She’s too selfish to do that. She wanted all attention be on her and her b.s empire of Goop.

      • Dusk says:

        Thanks for the gossip. I haven’t followed the details of their marriage closely but I thought it was merciful for her/them not to talk about it too much except the conscious uncoupling blog post on where else but her ecom site.

  36. MrsBanjo says:

    “Yes, I saw her straw hair and her look of smug disgust and I knew Gwyneth Paltrow was the one who took my spleen.”

    I’m cackling in the ER from this, which isn’t helping my abdominal pain, but it made my day all the same.

  37. AnotherDirtyMartini says:

    The last 3-4 post about Gwyneth have made me do a double take – totally thought she was Blythe Danner. I like her mom mucho más than I like her, so it’s not a bad thing.

  38. Snazzy says:

    ” If you told me that Gwyneth promoted the killing of hobos to improve one’s skin tone, I would say “that’s SO Gwyneth.” ”

    I’m dying

  39. Raina says:

    She would pick up her kids on a scooter or whatever over priced shit that was and constantly run into traffic causing near deaths.
    I have a feeling she’s probably a nice person but, when shit hits the fan, she’s about as honorable as a yellow toenail passing off as healthy. Sure, she means well…but we can all sense something’s off.
    Lol. Sorry for description.

  40. cantgoogleme says:

    Kaiser’s writing is flawless here:

    “…who only cares about fleecing rich women for profit”

    Fleecing. Ugh, perf.