Oprah‘s list of “favorite things” is here! And thank goodness gas prices have hit rock bottom and stock markets are sky high because if you wanted to buy all the stuff on this list, it’ll cost you $13,054.
So what’s on the list this year, you ask? Oprah’s book, What I Know For Sure ($25). A ginger beauty and wellness collection ($265). A copper tray and mug set ($365). Dog beds (up to $710).
Taken individually, there are plenty of things to indulge in that don’t cost a ton. But taken together, the list is essentially a sketch of what Oprah wants you to imagine her life is like. She writes letters with fancy ballpoint pens. (Damn your email!) She has tea parties. She cozies up with a good book and puts on foot cream and drinks nice tea. Meanwhile, you’re sitting on the couch in holey pajamas and chipped polish drinking a magnum of cheap pinot grigio and watching Sleepy Hollow. (That doesn’t sound too bad actually.)
The list, like Oprah herself, is an aspirational construct that draws in loyal fans and pushes product.
Oprah has made a name for herself (in part) by being your imaginary best friend. And that’s not a knock against her. Oprah is definitely the bomb. She came from humble beginnings and a troubled background to become the “queen of media.” But part of the reason why she appeals to so many people is because she can fill the different boxes — mentor, BFF, therapist, etc — that meet the desires of a diverse fan base. It’s part of what has made her a billionaire.
For years, she’s put out a list of her “favorite things.” When she had her show, you may remember the frenzy she would work her audience into when she would give away things on the list that were unveiled on the show. It’s a trend that persists in daytime programming to this day.
Women would lose their minds and be reduced to tears because of Oprah’s largesse. Not only that, she sold mad product. Some of the smaller companies on the list would talk about their inability to keep up with all of the orders after they were chosen.
The idea that you can own a piece of a lifestyle is certainly not unique to Oprah. It’s the reason why there are a million and one perfumes and colognes on the market. Can’t afford a designer Marc Jacobs outfit? That’s all right. For a fraction of the price, you can smell as fresh as a “Daisy.”
It’s the reason why celebrities become spokespeople. Why we prefer one type of coffee or cheese or beer over another. Why we have “lifestyle brands” to begin with.
No doubt, the things on Oprah’s list are nice. Owning a piece of it means buying into the Oprah image, which many people are all too happy to do.
image via Twitter. H/t Jezebel