EST. May 2000 (AD)


Popular Columns:


Libby Zimmerman Interviews Oprah Winfrey

As the Media Mogul launches OWN


Dear Readers

It would be really nice to just have an article appear in HW without having to write an apology first. I don't even get paid to write the apology which is like rubbing salt in the wound. Ok, first I'd like to apologize to Oprah Winfrey for getting drunk before during and after the interview, I'm sorry for disparaging her and throwing up in her Hermes Birkin bag. I honestly just thought I was going to burp. I'd also like to apologize to the Four Seasons, I will replace the drapes and the window:. I'm told the fountain can be fixed you just need someone who knows what they are doing. I would like to thank Debra Victoroff for posting bail and Kate Heidel for getting me home.

Oprah Winfrey: I'm here to promote MYYYY OWWWWNNNNNN NETWOOOOOORRRRRK!!!!!

LIBBY: Ow. I have very sensitive hearing. From 3-12 yrs, you never saw me without a swab stuck in my ears. True story, I always had to wear my hair in pigtails.

And not to put to fine a point on it, I usually start the interview.

OPRAH: Sorry I'm just so excited!

LIBBY: Well I can see that, but before we go on I notice that you've only ordered a salad, HW's given me the biggest lunch budget I've ever had, for obvious reasons, so why don't you order a nice steak or a pie or something?

OPRAH: No, I'm watching what I eat.

LIBBY: A steak is easier to see.

OPRAH: No, I'm just fine.

LIBBY: You sure? A little 32 oz steakie for Oprah another little double Scotchie for Libby?

OPRAH: No, I'm good.

LIBBY: You don't mind if I...

OPRAH: No, not at all. I am so excited to talk about this new chapter in my life...

LIBBY: Do you remember I interviewed you before? You many not have noticed and I'm ashamed to say I was kind of hinting for a job with you. I sent you my resume, my reel. 67 phone messages and a basket of muffins. I learned all the lyrics to "Run On' which was your theme song at the time. Remember?

OPRAH : I remember the song I sang it myself and speaking of myself...

LIBBY: Doesn't matter. The confidentiality thingy you make everyone sign would've made my head blow off, that's for sure.

Wow. Is there a hole in this glass?

OPRAH: I'm just proud to be able to talk about my own network. OWN is the network of self-discovery, connecting people to each other and to their greatest potential, We tell real life stories that are emotional and entertaining. We present moments of transformation that inspire action.

LIBBY: Are you having anything? Maybe a shot? I don't want to be drinking alone.

OPRAH: No. Our debut on January 1st drew 1 million viewers between 8 p.m and 9 p.m.

LIBBY: Not to be Patty Party Pooper, but I have here in my notes that the ratings plummeted within two weeks.

OPRAH: There are some growing pains sure. But there are also some success indicators. For example the numbers have remained very high for Oprah Behind the Scenes.

LIBBY: Everyone's probably hoping you'll belt someone or make Gayle eat paint.

OPRAH: There are so many programs to look forward to, there's Do You Like My Shoes? where I take my viewers on an emotional journey through my closet. We have a show called FIre Away where we take hoarders to Disneyland and while there we clean up their homes then remove and set fire to their belongings. It is very emotional, but don't worry we given them 15 mintues of post show aftercare with a registered hypnotist. The Greatest Things I've Ever Said is self explanatory and will run twice daily, and on the lighter side we have Guerilla Makeovers, a fun show where we kidnap people and do them over against their will. It's hilarious! Also, This is What 36 Pounds of Cheese Looks Like! each week one lucky viewer will have her favourite cheese shaped into a 35 pound pyramid. She has to eat her way through to the car keys hidden inside. Oh, and.keep your eyes peeled because I just might surprise everyone by dropping in every week and saying "Whoa! That's a lot of cheese!"

LIBBY: What is the secret of your success, do you you think?

And are you sure you don't want a little drinkie-poo? Little nip?

OPRAH: I'm Everywoman. People can relate to me.

LIBBY Well maybe if every woman is a fat black woman with more money than God.

OPRAH: No, no, no, no, that's a common misconception but really, even without the money I know I can touch people That is my gift. I've always known that I was destined to greatness.

LIBBY How do you find that out? Maybe I was destined too but missed it. Was there an image on your French toast? A dream? The reason I ask, is back in 1964 I was on the panel of a very popular daytime show called "Checkers The Home Game." I'm sure you've heard of it. After the show we used to hang around the Algonquin Hotel--we were a really famous group. We didn't have a round table we had two four tops and a deuce but my group was just as interesting as those wannabes that came thirty years before us. There was me, Mitzi Shawl, Joey Benito, Frannie Testo and who else?

OPRAH: New York is a great city, but it's not for me I find...

LIBBY I'm talking. Did I say MItzi Shawl? Coco Yacowitz, Jackie Morgan,..someone else. The one with the hair.

OPRAH:: With my own network I am on a mission to improve not only my life but the lives of others. I want to raise the level of discussion, to awaken our collective spirit, to elevate our minds. I want to draw viewers away from trash TV, I want to ..

LIBBY: Yeah, the cheese show oughta do that. No offense Ope, but really, weren't you the one who started trash TV? You trounced Phil Donahue with stunts and outrageous guests that were referred to in the media as "Nuts and Sluts" and that started the whole mess we have today-- seriously are your sure you won't have just one drink? These Scotches are going down like shooting sherry.

OPRAH: I am for the first time in my life, speechless.

LIBBY What was I saying? Oh, yeah. Marty Flemish. That's who I was missing. Marty Flemish a hilarious, HILARIOUS guy, married to Gina Jones a great gal. She had a poodle act. Anyway I'd had a couple of bowls of cocktails and went to powder my nose woosh! I fell down the stairs well those stairs are narrow--if you've ever gone pee at the Algonquin you'll know what I mean, have you?

OPRAH: What?

LIBBY Because they are narrow, there is a little landing so you actually have to fall down twice in order to make it to the bottom. Anyway, who knows how long I was lying there, but when I woke up I saw a bright light and I heard a voice saying "You must continue." That's right, "You must continue" I'm sure the voice was William Demerast, but I'm not sure if "You must continue" meant I should go just go pee, or if there was a bigger message, maybe that was my sign--perhaps I was meant to... Oh, dear....

I'm so sorry, I'll replace that-- Where are you going? You want to grab a cocktail at the bar?