Thursday, January 26, 2006

Don't F with the O

Boy howdy do you not want to make Oprah angry.

But boy howdy does it make for some fascinating tv.

So fascinating in fact that I have spent the last hour trying to sum up my feelings about it in a way that is as interesting to read as watching the show was. And you know what? I just don't think it's possible.

But I can give you some highlights!
1. Maureen Dowd, saying something along the lines of "I hope Oprah kicks Frey's lying bony ass out of her book club." Curiously enough, the transcript on the NYT site does not note the bony ass part of Dowd's statement. Oh, she said it, all right.

2. Oprah not taking any shit from Nan Talese, publisher of the book, who kept pussyfooting around her role in all this, refusing to take responsibility. There was a Washington Post columnist -- a man -- on a little while later, and he talked out of both sides of his mouth, telling Nan Talese he didn't agree with her while simultaneously kissing her ass. He feared the Nan Talese. But Oprah fears nobody.

3. Listening to Frey try, piteously, to defend himself. O: "Did you even have two root canals, James" J: (wheedling) "Uhmmmmm." O: "Come on, James, you either had them or you didn't." J: (whining) "Well, as far as I remember it I did." The man even talks with a bit of lisp so it was more like "Ath far ath I remember it." Damn.

4.. The look on Frey's face. He was utterly destroyed. And to be honest, while I know what he did was terrible (heck, I've said as much on my blog) I felt pity for him. There, I said it. I realize he's made enough money off his book so he'll never have to work again but the man has ruined his life. He's lost his integrity, all of it, utterly. He'll never be able to buy that back with money. It's frightening to me, how astoundingly he has fucked up, because as a fellow addict (and while much of his book is a lie it is true that he's an addict) I know that you can quit the booze (or the crack or the porn or the potato chips) and still be a deeply, deeply disturbed individual. And I worry about myself.

When I was small, I'd have this nightmare where I'd wake up, get out of bed, and creep downstairs to the kitchen -- to discover the devil, cloven hooves, forked tail and all (actually looking curiously like the one from the cans of Underwood deviled ham that my mother used to make into sandwiches), frying up my parents. He'd look at me sideways and catch my eye and smile, like we knew each other, like we were thick as thieves. I'm getting a little out there with my metaphor, but that's how I feel about the addiction sometimes -- it's waiting there in the dark, and it knows me, better than I know myself. And if I'm not careful, and by careful I mean full of care, for myself and for how I live my life, it will come for me and the people I love.

Redemption is a powerful, powerful thing. What will be interesting to see is if there is any for Frey. I don't think he's a monster. I do think he got what he deserved. I hope he comes out on the other side of this a better human being than he is now.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well done, McP. Hate the game, not the player, as they say.

Vegas odds are that Frey relapses on his addictions after this.

Either way, he brought this unholiest of hells on himself, and while financially he is extremely well off for his sins, Oprah now carries his testicles in her purse. That can't be easy for him.

Anyway. Well done.

9:03 AM, January 27, 2006

Blogger McPolack said...

Thanks. I wonder about Frey's relapse potential myself. It's a definite possibility. I hope he doesn't, if not for himself, then for his wife and little girl.

11:15 AM, January 27, 2006

Blogger Cuarentayuno said...

Life is choices, sweetums. He will choose whether or not to relapse, in the same way he has chosen to stay sober all this time. Or has he? We just don't know anymore...

12:23 PM, January 27, 2006

Blogger Teri said...

Yes, yes. I too felt pity for the guy, though I know he's getting what he deserves. It was so uncomfortable watching him backpedal and pretend until the very end when he said, after being prodded, that he lied.

I would have a leeeeeeeeetle bit more respect for him if he hadn't tried to keep up the charade for the whole show. It was just pathetic.

I was so psychd I caught the show - it was just lucky that I turned it on at the very beginning. I knew you'd be watching it! :)

11:01 PM, January 27, 2006


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