I’ve always been a Paul Newman fan, and was aware that a couple of books had been published about him since his death, but couldn’t remember the titles. Along the way to finding those two books (Paul Newman: a life by Shawn Levy and the People Magazine Tribute: Paul Newman), I ran across another title that caught my interest.
Shameless Exploitation in Pursuit of the Common Good: the Madcap Business Adventure by the Truly Oddest Couple was written by Paul Newman and A. E Hotchner, and describes the many experiences that grew out of Newman’s desire to bottle a few jars of his homemade salad dressing to give to friends. While breaking nearly every business start-up rule that exists, they somehow developed a company and product line that gives away its profits (over $265 million, to date) and positively affected the lives of thousands of folks.
The book travels from the unexpected birth of the company, to the amazing success of the first years (they had been so sure the business would fail, the only furniture in the office was the pool furniture from Newman’s back yard), to the problem of choosing which charities should receive the money. There is a good-sized section on the development of the original Hole-In-the-Wall-Gang camp for children with serious/terminal illness, and all the related camps that followed. I found the book truly delightful, and enjoyed how good it made me feel to read it.
My favorite quote from the book: “I never thought I’d get into science, but being able to turn salad dressing into a school bus – that’s the kind of chemistry that tickles the fancy.” Paul Newman, p124.
· Newman’s Own website – includes recipes and coupons
· Newman’s Own Organics website (run by daughter Nell Newman)
· Newman’s Own Foundation website
· Newman’s Own Cookbook
· The Hole-in-the-Wall Gang Cookbook