Here you are readers – a beautiful slice of Americana – the special weird kind that we could NEVER recreate in this country, even if we tried for a hundred years. Basically, Oprah’s chat show is coming to an end, and for this reason the calibre of each of the guests for the last round of shows has shot up by a notch or ten. It turns out that in the States, Ralph Lauren is a kind of interviewer’s holy grail because he hasn’t done one on TV for over 20 years, so by any standards this would be a coup. More interesting though, MUCH more interesting, is the fact that Oprah went to visit Ralph on his ranch. We were about to type the word ‘spectacular’ just before ‘ranch’ but realised as our finger was about to hit the ‘s’ that ‘spectacular’ simple does not even BEGIN to do this monumental utopia of real estate justice.
Oprah’s reaction to the ranch is more than polite admiration. She goes waaaay over the top. Not short of a bob or two herself, (she’s the richest African-American woman and one of the most lucrative brands in the world, according to Forbes) Oprah wanders from place to place, her mouth hanging open in amazement and naked jealousy. ‘You have simply no idea what a dream of dreams of dreams come true this is for me’ she says, surveying a panorama. Or, perched on a Navaho blanket-draped sofa in cluttered teepee ‘I could be so happy here’. At another moment, she faces Ralph over a bed covered in quilts and charmingly mis-matched cushions. ‘Do people stay here?’ she hints, weightily, ‘When they are invited’ replies Ralph, pointedly. Bizarre to think of the super rich getting life envy, isn’t it? Does it make us comparatively poor people feel better or worse?
- Naomi Attwood