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Edited by on May 26 2011 at 10:29 AM

According to Jezebel, who bravely and and altruistically estimated each year’s value of Oprah’s Favorite Things (OFT) — that bygone seasonal orgasm of mass consumerism and mass hysteria — Oprah dropped about $23.8 million on making her studio audience cream their relaxed fit khakis since 2002. But in Oprah money, that’s equivalent to a trip to the grocery store and a mani-pedi with Gayle.

Oprahs Favorite Things Cost About $23.8 Million: Or, What Happens When Everyone Gets a Prius

2002 – The first OFT was a subtle affair. Clocking in at $730,500, highlights included key lime pie and a J. Lo velour sweatsuit. You gotta start somewhere.

2003 – O then proceeded to crack the million dollar mark, $1,527,750. This is when she started throwing $600 watches and $400 Blackberries at people.

2004 – Shit went down. $4,299,600. We’re talking flat screen TVs ($2,299), spa trips ($850), $11,000 bedding and a $2000 laptop. Suffice to say, there were no J. Lo sweatsuits.

2005 – A little more conservative. $2,211,600. We got a little Ralph Lauren, a little Burberry, an Apple iPod and the big ticket item, a $2400 diamond watch.

2006 – This year’s studio audience must have been PISSED. Facing criticism that she had been basically feeding into American’s capitalist greed, Oprah gave her studio audience camcorders and a $1000 credit card to perform (and record) a good deed. Cost = $390,000.

2007 - So that happened, a lesson was learned by no one and then Oprah dropped $2,364,000 on some hideous footwear ($120), the super awesome Planet Earth DVD box set and a $3800 refrigerator. I wonder if that included shipping and handling?

2008 - Remember the recession? Yeah, me neither, but Oprah did and so she shafted her audience again with an installment of “Thrifty Favorite Things.” An H&M swimsuit ($15), a Norma Kamali suit ($350) and something known as “Fit Flops” ($50) broke the bank at $210,600.

2009 – Oprah didn’t even bother this year. There was no OFT, no one checking under their seats for anything, no one jumping up and down in an embarrassing fit of ecstasy. The end was nigh.

2010 – Lulled into a false sense of security, Oprah struck with what would be her Biggest and Last Favorite Things Ever. A bittersweet moment, no doubt, but one still considerably sweet at a cost of $12,075,000. Diamonds! Cashmere! $700 cruises! $3600 3D televisions! $500 iPads! And the grand daddy of all prizes, a $22,000 Volkswagen Beetle! Crying, jumping, hyperventilating, heart palpitations, etc.  followed.

And that’s all she wrote. To those lucky couple hundred of people who got to bask in the glory of Oprah as she screamed in your face about gifts you could otherwise never afford, I salute you. To the less fortunate souls from  2006, 2008 and 2009, at least you got to bask in the glory of Oprah yelling in your face about something.

That’s more than many of us will ever be able to say. [Jezebel]


Story by Lester Brathwaite

I was center square from 1969 to 1978, during which I perfected the art of the zing as well as a crippling cocaine addiction. Bea Arthur was responsible for both. @LesFabian lester at