The Weirdest Advice that Ever Worked, Oprah Style

11 Oct

My accidental prize from my last visit to a doctor’s waiting room was my inadvertish purloining of the October 2012 issue of O Magazine. Sometimes I swear I just DO not know what I am doing. But fortunately for me, Oprah is offering up “the 101 best pieces of advice forever.” And do I look like a woman who needs 101 pieces of advice? Why yes I do. My own dear son was curious at how many times I need to learn the bananas and pocketbooks don’t mix rule and I had to tell him that the last time I put a banana in my pocketbook was today. However, this magazine, so rich in color and style, is a wonderland of treasures that I am sure I will find many pieces of advice that will bear repeating in a way I will be very interested in listening to, unlike Mr. H’s many admonitions about what happens when you leave Singletons on the floor. M

It is so rich that I’m actually going to start with one (1) piece of advice that was given to in O magazine’s Contributor’s section to photographer Ruven Afanador, who, to his credit, did manage to find yet another way to make Oprah look stylin’ for another month, despite the fact that she was fully clothed, unlike every other magazine cover lady. Anyway, Ruven Afanador, who appeared quite monkish in his small photo, said the best advice he ever received was going to Milan—BORING! I already saw that stupid movie where that English actress was playing a rich guy’s wife and she has an affair with this workingman because he cooked some orgasmically delicious snails or something, and everyone was so impressed because she was fluent in Italian but then had to do Italian with a Russian accent, and when they finally had their fling there were a lot of shots of buzzing bees around flowers. That movie was set in Milan and that’s all I have to say about it the city of Milan. I hated that movie, by the way.

But in answer to the question of what was the “weirdest advice that actually worked,” he said,

“An Indian shaman told me to travel to the Amazon to photograph ‘a real life Tarzan.’ I went to Colombia and found a man who showed me the jungle and its environs—the experience was deeply enriching.”

1. This is my favorite piece of advice, even though the shaman seems a bit confused about Tarzan’s actual address. However, I found it a bit cryptic. Is this similar to the advice given by the Oracle as she sat over the steaming volcanic vents at Delphi, offering deeply meaningful but mysterious advice? Like the advice she offered in 560 BC to Croesus:

▪                I count the grains of sand on the beach and measure the sea; I understand the speech of the dumb and hear the voiceless. The smell has come to my sense of a hard shelled tortoise boiling and bubbling with a lamb’s flesh in a bronze pot: the cauldron underneath it is of bronze, and bronze is the lid.[6]

▪                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_oracular_statements_from_Delphi (Thanks Wikipidia)

Now how about that for advice? Sure beats “Don’t bitch about your friend’s ex after they’ve broken up.” I will have much more to say on that subject in future posts. But honestly, what fun is it NOT to bitch about your friend’s ex?

But,  back to the Shaman. Enriching, Schmenriching. Surely it means something more than that. Perhaps something like., hmm, what does the Amazon mean. Well, it’s a river system. And, it’s a powerful woman. And yet, he’s supposed to go there and take a picture of a powerful man. A powerful, primitive man. Could there be some sort of anima/animus tension there, speaking in a Jungian sense? Why does anyone need to be overly confused by their sexual identity in our common era of LBGTIQ???? We’re all half-man, half-woman these days. Or at least we’re Q (Questioning—something). And so, I think of the river system, running from the mountains to the sea. The mountains must trap the clouds as they sweeps in, and then, at the continental divide of the Andes, slowly stream east or west. Could it be, that in a land of many tributaries, in a land where networks of moving water all have a common goal of getting to the lowest possible elevation, a powerful man stands tall? And that the advice receiver must somehow “capture” him in film. Okay, let me put it through my little advice processor and  . . . wait, I’m getting a reading: . . . It’s coming . . . . It’s “You’re 50 years old, move out of your mother’s basement and get a real job. And when you take her out to the International House of Pancakes, YOU pay.”

Man, I’m good. Only 100 pieces of advice to go!

Writing Spark: So what’s the weirdest advice that YOU ever got that worked.

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