• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies When I set out to learn about my mother's bridge club, the Jewish octogenarians behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, their gen, and the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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Who Can Take a Sunrise


Oprah Will Resume Book Club On September 17–And No, It’s Not FREEDOM

“Just under a year after selecting Uwem Akpan’s SAY YOU’RE ONE OF THEM, Oprah Winfrey is ready to pick another book for her audience to read. Newtonville Books blogged that they were notified by a Macmillan sales rep of the impending announcement, to air on September 17, when the Oprah-stickered edition will release.

Let’s face it, the Oprah pick is the grown up equivalent of the Wonka gold ticket. The industry is atwitter with expectation. We’re talking a couple million copies and that’s just domestic. I’ve almost never met an author, even the most sane and sober, who didn’t at some point betray his intelligence by suggesting that he would be a terrific guest on Oprah. Except for what’s his name. Oprah is hard and wet. She is fat and thin. She is straight and gay. She is everything and everything is me. Do you remember when she started to give Phil Donahue a run for his rug? For me, friends, it was a thrill to see a hugely overweight woman demand so much share. Sure, she’s made some mistakes, but the girlfriend sells our hotcakes. Long may she wave.

And now, my question for today. If you got the gold ticket, the tap from Lady O, what do you think it would bring: money, readers, fame, disaster, pussy, time, ocean, booze, or a new roof. What would you want? What would you get?

33 Responses

  1. Lots of cake. A PhD maybe, if one can be bought.

    • You needn’t buy one.

      Most PhDs will do anything if you let them install your copy of QuarkXpress 8.3 on their Mac.

  2. Oprah Book Club = massive instant literary fame. Which would be nice. But somehow, when I think of Oprah and books, I can never forget that Cormac McCarthy interview. It was horrible, horrible, horrible.

  3. A pair of stockings, a pair of shoes
    A record by The Moody Blues
    A bottle of Chanel No. 5
    A poster of a band called Dead or Alive
    A silk negligee and a black garter belt
    A book about how to get to know yourself

    The Nails

  4. A bevvy of the items in the most popular NYTimes story of the day: not oil rig explosions, not mideast peace talks, not the taupe couches in the redesigned Oval Office, but For The A-Cup Crowd, Minimal Assets are a Plus!

  5. What would it bring? Critics. Lots and lots of critics.

    What would I get? A pair of those noise-canceling headphones people wear on airplanes.

    And I’d crank it.

  6. Would it bring me what I long for? The chance to leave my corporate job? Oooo la la.

  7. the curtain opens- oh, wait, the tv goes on.
    Oprah: today we have the author of my new pick for my book club (tick, tick, tick). Please give it up (I’m really Chris Rock- fuck you!BLEEP. BLEEP, BLEEP) for Lyn leJeune.
    Me: shuffle, shuffle, shuffle on stage. I mean across the WHOLE length of the stage. Oprah: Lyn, Lyn, over here sista. Sista, get yo ass ova hera. Me: Oh, sorry, I lost track of the time space continuum. I thought I was back in 2010. Oprah: No honey pie, you’re here and it’s 2050. Let me help you with your walking stick. Me: thanks. where am I? Oprah: on the Oprah Show. Me: damn, sista, you still here? Looking good, lost some weight. Oprah: I am what I am. The audience: And that’s why we love you! Oprah,: Now Lyn, I loved, loved your book. You explained how the earth was saved by the forces of a thousand wings of butterflies. Amazing. We were doomed, all the politicians-soothsayers sayed so. How did you know this and why were you so generous to tell the world and save us. The government has set up millions of butterfly farms all over the place. Me: I kept trying to send my message out….dreamed I’d be on your show; kept telling agents I’d save the world. You can imagine, sista Oprah, the responses I got. Oprah: What were they, Lyn, tell us. We’re all open orificies. Me: They all said, they all said…wait, I need to take my pills. ( I open one bottle and take one pill.) Good thing they can get five psychotrophic durgs into one. I’m okay now. They said: “This is not for me!” Oprah: The world rarely listens to prohets before it’s too late. We were all lucky.
    The audience stands and cheers and Oprah annouces that they will each get a copy of my new book: YOU PEOPLE ARE FUCKED, ROYALLY. (SUBTITLE: THE LAST OF THE RED hOT LOVERS. ) My books sell like hotcakes, literarly, people started eating then with maple syrup, strawberry jam, anything sweet. The world became addicted to my books…the paper one!..finally, someone had found a great use of cocaine.

  8. Our roof is fairly new. I’d get somebody to do the cleaning and a lawn guy to do the weed wacking. I’d also buy the mah jongg set I’ve been putting off ordering because it costs $140.

  9. Humiliation.

  10. Even after being crowned by The O Queen, I’d still think that I suck.

  11. Bookcases. Proper ones.

    And I would buy a bar.

  12. I would take a trip with my husband to see the pyramids, buy a brownstone with an enormous back garden, oh, and pay off my sons’ college debt, and buy a new wardrobe, not from Target. I better write fast though. She’s going off the air soon. Actually, I think she’d like my book–but doesn’t everybody think that?

  13. Let’s start a campaign!!! Oprah should start her own publishing house……think of it…..O Publishing. Betsy, got any pull?

  14. The opportunity to show the world what the term “stage fright” really means.

  15. the opportunity where people are willing to read and think about my book. To stop for for one second and say, hmmmm. I think all her books have that quality. Not that I have anything more or less earth-shattering to say than anyone else, but still…

  16. To be perfectly honest it would mean two very importabt things to me and I apologize for my avarice in advance: first, and foremost, it would mean money. They say it don’t buy happiness, but, sweetie, it sure do pay the bills. And since I’m confessing, gotta cop to the second very important expectation–that it would bring fame as well. Now on the practical side, a nod on Oprah would be the most awesome marketing boost to an author’s career as anyone could ever hope for. Unlike the author-who-shall-remain-nameless, if Oprah were ever to bestow that golden ticket upon my unworthy soul, I’d be getting it punched big time before she figured it out and withdrew it.

  17. A Brazilian butt lift, and if that went well, a beach-house.

  18. Wow maybe someone would actually read my book!

  19. What I would want is money to buy time to write. What I would get is anyone’s guess.

  20. Instant literary success and a whole crapload of fans who probably don’t really understand what my book is about and only bought it because “oprah said”. But I’d still be thrilled to get that sticker.

  21. sales, lots and lots of sales which would bring Freedom from the 9-5 which would bring an actual real life writing career, and voila! Oh a cleaner would be nice too, would be too busy writing like a machine to clean!

  22. A portal to the masses.

  23. Ah, geeze, that sounds good to me.

  24. A thick skin (because that kind of success always brings the haters out in droves). And a big, fat bank account. (Which would buy a better education for my kids. A house with an actual closet in the bedroom. And a whole big luxurious vat of time to write.)

    And readers. All those lovely, lovely readers. Millions and millions of readers. Oh, yes.

  25. It would bring me everything I ever wished for. And I haven’t been so careful with my wishing.

  26. Paid collaborators for my future books. So what if they’re all memoir!

  27. I’d want a half-point above the line.
    I’d take reversionary rights at twenty-four months.
    I’d get $5K and a standard rake.

    I’d buy a lawyer who just lost half his shit plus fees in a divorce from a woman half his age.

  28. I would want to lose all shame, but I would most likely gain some.

  29. The financial security that would bring — I enjoyed this description (written by a politician) of how things are when you have “means” —
    “…I worry that there as also another change at work. Increasingly I found myself spending time with people of means — law firm partners and investment bankers, hedge fund managers and venture capitalists. …They reflected, almost uniformly, the perspectives of their class: the top 1 percent or so of the income scale that can afford to write a $2,000 check to a political candidate.

    …Still, I know that as a consequence of my fund-raising I became more like the wealthy donors I met, in the very particular sense that I spent more and more of my time above the fray, outside the world of immediate hunger, disappointment, fear, irrationality, and frequent hardship of the other 99 percent of the population — that is, the people that I’d entered public life to serve.”
    [Barack Obama, The Audacity Of Hope]

    Above the fray: what a place to be! With notebooks, pens, computer, printer, and books…! And help the other 99 percent through my writing. …

  30. Well, it would depend whether she actually aired the show. Hahaha.

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