The latest issue of Oprah’s O magazine features two covers: one of the host taping her first show in 1986, and the other, more recent, boasting a big “Thank You!” headline. Inside, she talks about the beginning stages of the legendary show and what it’s legacy will be.
On the beginning: “The first few years when the staff was still less than 12 people, I used to hang out with them because we were doing live shows, and we’d be done by 10 a.m. We had four people in four chairs, and that was it. Those were the days where I’d be the one taking the lunch order. I would walk around asking, ‘Okay, is it gonna be Taco Bell today, or are we doing Wendy’s?’ And then we’d go out and party at night.”
On the end: “I genuinely feel appreciated and loved by this audience that has grown up with me. Which, for me, is a huge, huge, huge accomplishment. Because I grew up feeling the opposite of that. Feeling a void, as a little girl, feeling that really nobody loved me. So to be surrounded by this, that is what I’m going to feel. And when you see the tears on the last show, that’s what those tears will be about. Those tears will not be about sadness.”
On what she’s taking with her when she goes: “The one thing I’ll take is the statue of Sojourner Truth that Jamie Foxx gave me for my birthday last year…Even in my youth, she was the historical figure I most identified with. Because even though she was born a slave, she was able to speak. She could communicate with people from all different backgrounds. She could speak to the most disenfranchised groups, and she could also speak to Congress. She was invited to the White House by Lincoln. Jamie didn’t know that I’d been reciting her “Ain’t I a Woman?” speech my whole life, or that when I die, I want to go out like a comet in the sky, which is something she said about her own life. But he gave me that statue, and it will come with me when I go.”