For Gayle King: What Oprah Never Told Her BFF

Emily Abbate

oprah gayle kingOprah is in tears, and it's not because she's signing off network TV. The audience gift giver is tearing up over the relationship with her best friend, Gayle King.

Gayle and Oprah, who have given many an interview before about their close friendship, met back in 1976 while working at Baltimore's WJZ. Since then, it's been a roller coaster of magazine photo shoots, golf outings, weddings, road trips, and jumping up a tax bracket (or two ... or six).

In an upcoming interview with Barbara Walters (airing tomorrow night on ABC), Oprah is slamming down those lesbian rumors once and for all, and this is what she's telling her friend Gayle for the first time.

In true Oprah fashion, she expresses eloquently how much her BFF Gayle means to her.

She is the mother I never had. She is the sister everybody would want. She is the friend that everybody deserves. I don't know a better person.

Call me a pansy, but I started to tear up myself right around here.

When Barbara asks Oprah why she is moved to tears, she says:

I'm thinking about how much I've probably never told her that. Tissue please! I now need a tissue. I've never told her that.

See? Even the queen of daytime's most emotional revelations forgets sometimes. Even after more than 40 years of friendship and appointing Gayle Editor-in-Chief of her self-titled publication, Oprah hasn't taken an opportunity to tell King these beautiful things.

And then, Oprah takes the emotional opportunity to combat the gay rumors.

I've said that we are not gay enough times. I'm not lesbian. I'm not even kind of lesbian. The reason why it irritates me is because it means that somebody must think I'm lying, that's No. 1. No. 2 -- why would you want to hide it? That is not the way I run my life.

If anything, seeing the Forbes highest paid woman discuss her passion for her best friend makes me want to tell mine how much they mean to me. 

Think to yourself: When was the last time you told your friends how much they mean to you? Or how about the last time you blatantly just said, "I appreciate you"? Sure -- it might feel lame. But think about how you would feel if someone randomly said that to you. I bet that you're smiling.

... Personally, I'm putting it on tonight's to-do list.

What do you think of Oprah and King's friendship?


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