So...I am a day removed from Oprahfest. The return to Earth is painless. My flowers await in their plastic tubs, and it is time to head out to transform my micro-ecosystem from pathetic to semi pathetic.
But first....I have to note a few things I noticed in the papers.
First: I am not a kiss Kass' ass kind of reader. The opposite, in fact. But I have to give the devil his due this a.m.
FIRST: I like this passage regarding Arnold and Maria:
Demanding adoration from another woman after years of marriage to the mother of your children is rather sad.When you're with one woman for years, she knows everything about you. And if she stays knowing everything, that's better than adoration. If we stay together...we count ourselves lucky. It's called marriage.
Of course, this door swings both ways. If our husbands can see our faces without makeup and say we look good, if they can adapt to our bad recipes, thrift shopping and all our other maladies, and stick around, we are lucky. Steve and I have traveled some rocky roads, and we are still standing. But it takes a will of iron to forgive transgressions, sublimate irritations, and adapt to each other's quirks. It is a choice to love. Made daily. That, like JK says, is marriage.
SECOND: I love Richard Roeper. He weighed in on Oprah madness here.
I am here to say that it is fine to weigh in on Oprah's missteps, but why the need to rush in and editorialize just now, Rich? For gazillions of us, this is a moment to just savor. Sure, celebrities benefit from knowing Oprah, and she benefits with viewership. All friendships have reciprocal elements, hers are just on an atomic level.
In the world that men inhabit, sports is their Oprah parallel. From the time boys are little, they magnetize themselves to a sport, then an athlete, and a team. They elevate their icons to a vaulted status, and dissect their actions as if they were connected to the physics that sustain life. Every day we get pages of newsprint to reflect their infatuations. Men can feel free to turn on their point guard if he is ineffective. They are welcome to call for the dismissal of a coach or player. They turn a blind eye to immature or criminal behavior as long as the team thrives. It is a profound loyalty, until it evaporates in a lost bet or a bad season. IT is the linkage that allows men to have a modicum of interaction with other men. It is a multi-billion dollar industry.
Oprah is just Oprah- a show, a magazine, a brand- a person. Give us our day, Rich! Women are a more loyal sort of creature, turning a blind eye or ignoring the little things that might annoy. We save our incendiary power for stuff that matters. We would never choose this moment- a moment of culmination and passage for Oprah- to bring on the critique. Why, Rich? It seems kind of petty.
Oprah has never misbehaved, or let us down. She is so much more than "good at being famous". She not only does more good than we can imagine, she calls upon her audience to be good, and more importantly, to do good. This is not some NFL/United Way contractual obligation, it is the mainframe of her life. So ease up, Rich. Let her have her days, and let us enjoy them. Missteps, my ass.
LAST: Roger Ebert sent Oprah some questions to answer as she leaves. Read the interview here
Enjoy the grace of language in his queries, and the thoughtful nature of her answers. Oprah was mentored by Roger: he led her to own the rights to her show via King syndication, based upon his experience with his At the Movies show. He did the math on a scrap of paper. She listened. ABC would love a do-over. She is a billionaire, one of the world's most powerful people. The love they share is palpable.