Oprah’s Favorite Things…are Ideas

4 Dec

Every year Oprah does a couple of those “Favorite Things” shows, the biggest one being during the holiday season. It’s one of those things that is taped in advance so the people in the audience are not expecting it. I’ve learned recently, though, that usually the people in the audience know because they are offered these “special tickets” as an apology for something gone wrong with an Oprah experience before. (Like they got to the show and there weren’t any seats available – they overbook these shows like airlines, so they are guaranteed to be full.)

Let’s set the scene, shall we?

Ok, you traveled to Chicago with your 80-year-old grandmother whose last “bucket list” wish is to see Oprah Winfrey. You waited a year for these Oprah tickets, so you go all out. You get plane tickets, hotel reservations, dinner reservations, tour reservations – and everything is going wonderful in Chicago until you are told outside the studio that the show is at full capacity. The nice people at Harpo offer you tickets for the next day, but you’ll already be back in Seattle for your grandmother’s pre-op appointment (for her hip replacement). The powers that be at the show tell you they are so sorry for your inconvenience and will make it up to you by sending you tickets to another show and paying your way back to Chicago. Sold! So, you’re back in Seattle and a few months later you get a phone call from the show telling you your tickets are in the mail. Tickets for a November taping. Hmm. OH MY GOD, THIS IS IT. Oprah’s Favorite Things! It has to be! Come on, Granny, get your walker – we’re going to Chicago.

You get to the studio, you’re in line, and everyone is whispering about this being THE show. You cannot believe your luck. You look over at Grams, and she is just as anxious to go in. You wonder if she’ll give out another refrigerator with an HD television screen. Or a high definition digital camcorder. Or the latest Apple techno thingy. This is the most fun! You are so excited that you call all your friends to tell them that you are about to receive all of Oprah’s Favorite Things!

Enter Oprah. Only she beings the show talking about the hard economic times, and how she didn’t feel like it was appropriate to have the usual “Favorite Things” show. You almost vomit. Instead, Oprah says she’ll be giving you ideas on how to have a thrifty holiday. A THRIFTY HOLIDAY? Grandma faints.

End scene.

Yes, Oprah decided to give her audience ideas as her favorite things. Am I the only one who thinks this is complete and total crap? I’m all for being sensitive to the many people who are scraping by, don’t get me wrong. I’ve always thought the “Favorite Things” episode was a little ridiculous anyway. (I mean, who can buy a $4,000 refrigerator for themselves, much less give it as a gift to someone?) It’s fun to watch those audience members go crazy, but most of those gifts are far too extravagant for my little ole’ budget. (One year she had a $250 cashmere scarf, and said you could give them to all your co-workers. I love my co-workers, but…) However, that is the fun of it. I watch that show and think how awesome it would be to be there, but I don’t get bitter about not being able to buy all that stuff. Let’s face it, celebrities in general are wasteful. They just are. Because they can be. This is Oprah, and we all know that Oprah isn’t going to forgo throwing a fabulous holiday party because the stock market is down and the unemployment rate is up. I kind of feel like she’s insulting our intelligence with this whole pseudo favorite things episode.

Some of her “ideas” are really cute, so if you are not as materialistic as most of the world, check them out here. But, I wouldn’t suggest trying these with your nieces and nephews without a warning of some sort. If they’re used to getting presents, and this year you give them a box with a note that says, “I love you because you are caring and sweet,” I think they might hurt your feelings when they aren’t overjoyed.

One Response to “Oprah’s Favorite Things…are Ideas”

  1. jcristg December 4, 2008 at 8:58 pm #

    a bunch of crap.and the one where the mom put together a bunch of stuff for her grown kids? just an excuse to finally get the rest of their junk out of her house. my mom’s been threatening to do it for years now.

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