Posts Tagged ‘Oprah’

Tabloid Talk Shows and the People They Love

Cameraman Works In The Studio - Recording Show In Tv StudioHave you ever wondered what possesses people to go on TV programs like Maury, Steve Wilkos, and The Jerry Springer Show, and make jackasses of themselves? Those shows are difficult to watch, which is why I usually don’t, but who hasn’t heard about them?

When I was twenty-something, I, like a lot of people in that age group — then and now — wanted to be on television. Being in the right place at the right time, and carrying myself in the ladylike manner my mother taught me, opened doors for me to a few appearances on the small screen. Hold up a moment — I KNOW you’ve never heard of me. I didn’t say I achieved stardom, I said I made appearances. Now, if you are one of those who climbed on your high horse before I finished explaining, climb down as I continue.

My first TV appearance was in 1973. I was working at the Pentagon, as a civilian telephone operator for the Department of the Army, and my supervisor selected me and a couple of other operators to represent our department on a telethon. Participants were told to avoid wearing certain colors (as I recall those were black, white and red), apparently the camera dislikes those colors. I complied and wore my favorite loud green pantsuit to make sure that my family and friends could see me among the numerous other volunteers from different agencies. They saw me. I think everybody in the home viewing audience  spotted me. Maybe loud green should have been included in the list of colors to avoid wearing.

My next TV appearance was in 1983. I actually got to speak. My two children and I were featured on a program called Saturday Magazine, broadcast weekly on CBS. The show profiled two single parent families in the area; my family and another divorced mother and her children. Not only were both our families followed and filmed for a few hours (sort of like an abridged version of a reality TV show), we were also summoned to sit in the live studio audience when the segment aired. My copy of that taped program will be passed down to my children’s children as a keepsake relevant to our family history.

Speaking of live audiences, my sister-in-law, Barbara, and I were in the audience of Oprah‘s show, on November 9, 1987, when the talk show queen taped a program about the Challenger Shuttle disaster.

Aside from those occasions, I’ve been stopped and interviewed periodically by reporters on the street, about whatever newsworthy event they are covering. I do my best to speak intelligently, especially when there is a camera in my face, unlike some of the folks on tabloid TV who I don’t think put forth any effort or they just don’t know better. Is it obvious to anyone else that these shows target a certain demographic?

That brings me back to my question:  What possesses people to go on tabloid talk shows and make fools of themselves? Saturday Night Live’s former Church Lady would probably say, “Satan.”  But seriously, what?

Unlike celebrities who are usually paid guests on conventional talk programs, regular people – including the bozos and bozetts who appear on tabloid talk shows – do not get paid. The program pays their airfare and hotel expenses. That’s it. So, what reasons, aside from attention-starvation or a narcissistic personality disorder, would make tabloid junkies go on these outrageous shows and act up? You tell me. Click the comment box below and add your two cents to mine.


What Women Want: Tickets

Women learn at an early age that some things require patience – like waiting for Santa Claus, reaching our 18st birthday, and getting tickets for a live television talk show.

There are a few tricks that might get a wannabe audience member into the studio:  stand-by and use chutzpah like the now ex-Salahis; implement a write-in campaign with the determination of a president running for a second term; or sign-up on the show’s website and wait — with the patience of Job. There is another way to get tickets; not just for a live TV show, but for just about anything. It is the ultimate trump card:  have connections. It works for me!

My affinity for quality talk shows began in the early days of Phil Donohue, but my favorite contemporary program is The View. I will tell you about the arrival of my long-awaited opportunity to be an audience member on The View, but first let me share some of my past live studio experiences.

In the early 1980s, I was twice an audience member at The Carol Randolph Show, which was broadcast locally on CBS. Then, on one spring morning, as my son, daughter, and I were enjoying our favorite week-end activity – roller skating in Rock Creek Park – we were filmed by the crew of the weekly TV program Saturday Magazine. The show was producing a feature about single parent families, and my children and I were part of the live studio audience when the segment aired on WTOP in March 1983.

Audience members at live talk shows get the opportunity to see their favorite hosts and celebrity guests in person, as I did at The Carol Randolph Show. Lou Rawls was the singing guest on one show that I attended. Millie Jackson was the other. I visited briefly with both in their dressing rooms. But enough of my horn-tooting, you want to know how to get your own studio tickets, don’t you?  Here is the deal.

If you don’t have a friend who works with the show to hook you up,

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Face On, Face Off

Ladies, would you dare to take if off — take it all off — and then show your face in public?  I’m not talking about  revealing your birthday suit, I’m asking are you self-confident enough to appear before your significant other, friends, co-workers or strangers without makeup? Are you a woman who won’t leave home without it or do you feel comfortable going about your business with a naked face?

Excluding the entertainers who become unsuspecting victims of quick thinking shutterbugs or relentless paparazzi, away from the limelight, some female entertainers are voluntarily baring their faces and letting the world see them as they really are.

A few years ago, Tyrah Banks removed her makeup and did one show au naturel on her daily TV program. Occasionally, other celebs are spotted in public without the painted face:  Mariah Cary, Hoda and Kathi Lee, Barbara Streisand, Jennifer Hutson, Halle Berry, Jennifer Lopez, Oprah, and the list goes on. I wonder if going natural away from the spotlight is becoming trendy for celebrities or do they just grow tired of wearing the mask?  Regardless, there are probably numerous entertainers who wouldn’t be caught dead without their face on for whatever reason.

“When you are sporting grey hair with a makeup free face, that’s crossing the line.”  Imagine the pressure for celebrities when they read stinging comments like that one captioning a series of “before and after” photos by Joanna Sloame (New York Daily News).

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A Boomer’s Introspection on The Purpose

“You are not an accident. Even before the universe was created, God had you in mind, and he planned you for His purposes. These purposes will extend far beyond the years you will spend on earth.” Those thought provoking words are from Rick Warren’s book The Purpose Driven Life.

As Baby Boomers come closer to the end of our road, some are pondering our objective for being here. Although I once had a firm conviction about purpose, I am beginning to question my own thinking on that subject.

For years, I have been among those who believe that every individual was created by our maker for a specific purpose; and I suspect that our personal goals are secondary to the purpose for which we were born. I also wonder, are our personal goals commingled – unbeknownst to us  – with our purpose for being here? And, if we do all have a purpose and the purpose of some people is to do basically good things – like strive for world peace or, on a smaller scale, improve a chaotic society – then what is the purpose of evil doers?  

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