Like many bloggers, I enjoy looking at my site meter to figure out how people arrive at my site. The World Wide Web is amazing at bringing people together in ways that would have seemed impossible just a decade ago, so it's only natural to be curious as to how someone in Indonesia would find my little place on the 'Net.
So I did a little investigating and the search that brings more people to me than any other is "Oprah's friend Gayle" (or even more frequently, the misspelled "Oprah's friend Gail"). I wrote a post about the whole Oprah Winfrey/Hermes "scandal" last fall -- that didn't even mention Gayle -- and somehow my blog most closely matches this search criteria.
As it would happen, I spent a weekend in the Hamptons in the same house as Miss Gayle King, so I thought it only right to add to my blog for people searching for information about "Oprah's friend Gayle/Gail."
As most people know, Gayle is Oprah's best friend from the past 20-plus years. She's the editor at large for the wildly successful O, The Oprah Magazine and as a result, sort of acts as Oprah's "eyes and ears."
That weekend last summer was a hoot, and Gayle was a big part of it. When my friend Jay and I arrived at Jay's friend's house, Gayle happened to pull up at the same time. She jumped out of her sedan and immediately smiled and introduced herself and said, "Are you going to Russell's party tonight, too?" (The Russell in question was none other than Russell Simmons. For some reason, Jay and I thought it was hilarious that she would ask us that!)
From there we all hung out, had dinner and got to know each other through the next few days. What a fantastic woman she is. She's razor sharp, funny, sweet, caring and such a great listener. The house was occupied that weekend by nearly all gay men, and she was tickled to listen to our stories about our personal lives and relationships. And she was equally willing to discuss her marriage, separation, attempts at reconciliation and ultimate divorce. She's a very proud mother of what sound like two great kids and spoke very lovingly about them.
One other thing: being as close to Oprah as she is puts her in a decidedly precarious position. When word got out that she was staying at our house, it didn't take long for the friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend who had just written a self-help book to suddenly start "popping by" every five minutes to try to make his move. Gayle -- ever the pro that she clearly is -- handled it with enormous grace and charm, always being open and friendly yet letting every not-at-all-subtle PR attempt slide right off her. (This one guy literally camped out in our host's back yard to try to be there in the a.m. for a book pitch over orange juice -- and what with the power of Oprah's Book Club, who could really blame a guy for trying?)
So for those searching for a little more information on Gayle King, this is my little story. (And no, by every indication I saw, she is not Oprah's secret lover.)
Thursday, February 02, 2006
Posted by Kenneth M. Walsh at 7:28 AM