Dear Oprah | A Letter from Gram… circa 1988

Gram Letter to Oprah 1988

The folder containing photos, clippings and, most especially the writings from my Grandmother (like a letter to Oprah), is like a book that I never want to end. I’ve looked through it so many times searching for just one more bit of insight into the person she was. The person I loved so very much and to whom I am forever grateful for having raised me for the first eight years of my life.

Jen and Gram 1974

Each time I carefully thumb through the many letters she wrote (and thankfully made copies of before sending) I find something new. I ‘laughed audibly’ at this one.

Oh, Gram… if she only knew that commercials have become even more, in one of her terms ‘ad nauseam’ in number and what she would surely consider outlandishness.

It reads:

Dear Oprah,

Your show, 86% of the time, is so engrossing that the hour seems to pass with only two blinks of my eye lids. But there is one glaring defect. The commercials!! I realize they are necessary, that the bottom line “Make Money” is what counts and there is nothing wrong with that, but at the end of your hour I am totally exhausted.

The emotion charged experiences being relived, many times by overwrought guests, in front of our eyes, our open hearts, is all encompassing and involves deep emotions. To be jerked back and forth between a person who is baring their soul, painfully, and a commercial, prohibits any kind of continuity with the story unfolding before us. Trying to acheive this connection is so frustrating that after the end of your show I feel as if I have run the Boston Marathon, twice.

There must be a solution. Would it be possible to have the first 25 minutes devoted to commercials (I promise to watch) and then the balance of the time devoted to your extremely interesting subjects? It must be heart rendering for your guests to have to pause in the middle of the retelling of a traumatic experience. I feel for them and often wonder how or why they put themselves through the torture. There is a message to be told. We need show such as yours to enlighten us. I enjoy them and I will watch, but I hope that an answer will be found that will satisfy all goals.

Good luck and good health to you Oprah. You are a gutsy, classy Lady.

I am sincerely, Martha Dordigan
13424 Huston St. #C
Sherman Oaks, Ca 91423

p.s. I tried to write small and fit this on one page but old habits never die.

Clearly Gram put a lot of thought into this, did some math and came up with what she thought would be a great solution. I have to wonder if Oprah ever saw this letter. Was there any reply? Unlikely, but I have to believe this would have brought a smile to her face and maybe even a laugh.

My beloved and otherwise very healthy Gram died of breast cancer at the too young age of 72 in 1996. She would be in awe of technology today and would definitely have been a fan of Netflix, Hulu, and the DVR.

Obviously, it would be awesome if Oprah were to see this today – so, if you feel so inclined please do share. I’d be thrilled and thankful.

Thanks for stopping by,

xo Jen

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Published by

J. J. Cannon

Mom, Writer, Speaker, TV Guest & Contributor, Advocate for Social Media Etiquette, Author of Award Winning Social Media Guide, "@Sophie Takes a #Selfie"

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