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December 18, 2014

Oprah gives the gift that keeps on giving

by Julia Ward, posted Nov 1st 2006 6:32PM
Oprah WinfreyOn Monday Oprah Winfrey gave each member of her studio audience not a Pontiac, not an iPod, not even a lousy copy of O Magazine stashed under their seats. Nope. The lucky audience members were each given $1,000. Holy crap! A thousand dollars, Oprah? Thanks.

As you might imagine, the audience went nuts until Oprah dropped the bombshell. That $1,000 would go to someone other than themselves. That's the kind of gift that makes rich people feel good about themselves, and the rest of us feel sorta horrible. Sure, we want to give money to charity to. We'd like the good feeling that comes with tithing and personal philanthropy. We'd also like the good feeling that comes with paying the phone bill on time.

See, it's not the gift of charity that's such a bummer. It's the way she taunted the audience. First, give everyone a $1,000. Then, tell them they have to give it away. She didn't give anyone the joy of philanthropy. She gave them guilt. The reported wave of disappointment that washed over the audience after the "charity" announcement is the kind of thing that inevitably leads to a late night bout of angst over what a greedy, horrible person you must be for not wanting to part ways with your shiny, new $1,000 so soon.

Fortunately, everyone got a Sony DVD Handycam to "document their good deeds." Did I say to "document their good deeds?" I meant to take the bittersweet sting out of Oprah's "favorite gift."

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treegoat

LOL Porchland! I thought the same thing - how did she give herpes to all her audience members? And when will we see THAT part of the show?!

November 03 2006 at 8:55 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Spazzed

Maybe she should take over for Bob Barker

November 02 2006 at 7:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gordy

We really give Oprah too many props. She's not giving anyone $1,000...Bank of America is. Just Like GM, Apple, Kodak, Dell, etc., have in the past.

Just think, if these companies give the audience crazy money/prizes, just imagine how much Oprah got. She's not at the top of her game by spending her own money, TRUST.

I'm not hating on Oprah [do you boo], but media outlets get her twisted into some frantic philanthropist, when she's simply a media outlet for corporations--just like the others, just more popular.

It's been that way since Optifast.

November 02 2006 at 12:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michael Canfield

Also, that "free hugs" deal is just in time for flu season.

November 02 2006 at 6:42 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michael Canfield

Great. Go to a TV show for an hour, and get assigned homework.

November 02 2006 at 6:37 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Porchland

I thought maybe from the headline is was a venereal disease.

November 02 2006 at 12:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Borat

WTF? How does that make someone feel good? It's not even our own money we are giving to charity. We KNOW it's Oprah giving the money not us.

November 01 2006 at 9:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dwacon_com

At least they didn't have the IRS waiting for them at the exit, ready to extract their share of the $1,000 -- which is what happens to those who win game shows.

November 01 2006 at 8:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Roger Rees

Person sitting in seat 13F (turns to person in 13G): "Here, mom, have $1,000!"

Person sitting in seat 13 G (turns to person in 13F): "Here, daughter, have $1,000!"

November 01 2006 at 7:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sanna

So if you and had a friend that also was in the audience you could give the money to each other...but I suppose that's probably not gonna make Oprah happy.

November 01 2006 at 7:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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