There's a Facebook group out there called 1 Million Servers Strong Against Oprah's Comments. Her comments? That people should save money in a recession by only tipping 10 percent at restaurants. That's outrageous, right? How dare a multi-millionaire go on national television and basically take money from hard working regular folks who rely on tips to pay bills and feed their children?
Well, she never said that. Didn't say it. This Facebook group is based on a lie. And they don't seem to care, because it's still active.
I'm not an Oprah fan, meaning that I rarely if ever watch her show and have never opened her magazine. I think sometimes she has too much influence on issues of popular culture, but this case is an example of a herd mentality trying to use that influence against her.
I don't think this rumor was started by restaurant servers, though. It was obviously started by cheap bastards who don't want to tip properly. "Oprah told me to cut your income by over a third. Sorry."
Every few years there's an "Oprah Rumor". Several years ago it went around that Tommy Hilfiger went on her show and said he didn't want black people to buy his clothes. And a lot of folks believed it! Yeah, because that's what successful businessmen like to do; tell a segment of society they don't want their money. And if you're going to be racist on national television, is there a more sympathetic venue than the Oprah Winfrey Show? Of course not. Jeeeezus.
Even before that, there was a rumor that Liz Claiborne used an appearance on Oprah's show to announce her allegiance to Satan (stop laughing) and proclaim that all profits from her empire went to glorify the Prince of Darkness. Once again, this makes perfect sense. People love to work for years to build their businesses into huge conglomerates only to destroy it all by claiming to be an agent of evil.
So if these ridiculous rumors could take hold in a pre-internet society, there was no way this "tipping ten percent" bullshit wasn't going to sweep across the world. Believe me, I have sympathy for servers who are making less money now, just like I have sympathy for workers who have lost their jobs altogether; it's just that their anger is misguided and a prime example of the kind of lemmings-like behavior that just naturally pisses me off.