Oprah Winfrey, human hankie reunited on show

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BY KARA SPAK and MARK BIEGANSKI Staff Reporters

The man known around the world as Oprah Winfrey's human hankie during the election night rally for Barack Obama got five more minutes of fame Friday, appearing at a live taping of her show in Chicago.

Winfrey gave thanks to Sam Perry, who up until yesterday was known only as the mystery man Winfrey leaned on, crying, during the victory bash in Grant Park.

Today, Winfrey and Perry shared a brief hug as she apologized for not asking his name during the rally.

"What a night to share. This is the jacket, and you'll see there's no mascara [on it]." Perry said. "My cell phone right from the very beginning was vibrating from calls. People were staked out at my house yesterday as well."

A former reporter with Reuters and UPI, Perry is a Harvard graduate with a passion for hockey, photography and soccer. He is also fluent in Swedish and has studied Russian and Latin.

"I get home [Tuesday] and there are all these e-mails saying to me saying, 'Who's the guy whose shoulder you were leaning on?' " Winfrey said. "We were packed so closely you couldn't move. If I had had my hands down, I would have been in this guy's butt."

Winfrey said she saw the picture of the two in the newspaper the next day, but at the time hadn't even see his face.

"If I had to identify him in a lineup I couldn't," Winfrey said. "At first I did say to him if I could lean into his shoulder."

Winfrey went on TV on Wednesday thanking Perry, who she dubbed "Mr. Man" for giving her a shoulder to cry on. That sent the media into a frenzied search -- with CNN, the Associated Press and the Chicago Sun-Times looking to find the mystery man's identity.

Suntimes.com broke the news Thursday that Perry, a consultant living in northern California, was the guy grooving to Stevie Wonder with the TV superstar before Winfrey broke down in tears on his shoulder.

A panel of co-hosts on today's show poked fun at the moment, saying Winfrey wasn't just leaning on Perry but was draped all over him.

"Can you image this guy? He's watching Obama and all of a sudden he turns around and it's Oprah," joked actor Mark Consuelos.

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12 Comments

Hello Mrs. Winfrey my name is Dashna Louis I'm 13 years old I'm in the 8th grade I have a brother thats 17 and a sister thats 18.I'm a cheerleader for my school so I try to keep a smile on my face at school, but I know the truth about the problems I'm having at home. I'm trying to get into south tech academy so I can become a pediatrition, but ms. winfrey I need your help my mom is a single mother and she is working three jobs morning,afternoon, and night. Her feet is swelling up and she's always getting sick Thats half the reason why I want to become a doctor so I can help her but I'm afraid by the time I finish school it might be to late. Our house bill went from 2,050 to 2,481.22 she is even looking for another job on her off mornings. Please help me my mom doesn't deserve this. Please and thank you and may god bless you.

Hello Mrs. Winfrey my name is Dashna Louis I'm 13 years old I'm in the 8th grade I have a brother thats 17 and a sister thats 18.I'm a cheerleader for my school so I try to keep a smile on my face at school, but I know the truth about the problems I'm having at home. I'm trying to get into south tech academy so I can become a pediatrition, but ms. winfrey I need your help my mom is a single mother and she is working three jobs morning,afternoon, and night. Her feet is swelling up and she's always getting sick Thats half the reason why I want to become a doctor so I can help her but I'm afraid by the time I finish school it might be to late. Our house bill went from 2,050 to 2,481.22 she is even looking for another job on her off mornings. Please help me my mom doesn't deserve this. Please and thank you and may god bless you.

you(oprah) are human being,people must stop categorising you in the level you dont belong,keep doing the good things,your wish for everything is granted

If Oprah was leaning and crying on my shoulder, I would lose the ability to concentrate on anything else. I hope this guy was able to, or he missed that historic moment. Oprah has to know she has that effect on people. Very selfish.

Thank you Oprah. It was nice to see humanity in a public figure and never mind the naysayers. It's all about the venue, and heartfelt sentiment from blog commentors helps us all get our feelings out. Pro Bush, Pro Obama, whatever we might feel about abortion, we need a venue.

Oprah is human! WHO KNEW?????
She has a show that people CHOOSE to watch. She chooses her guests. People CHOOSE to watch. This is America. It was her decision. Oprah doesn't determine or INFLUENCE one way or the other what I do or do not do in my corner of this world. As for the new President? This Conservative Republican voted for the Democratic candidate this time. As I recall it, Republican media had NO MERCY on the losing Democrats in 2000 or 2004. Rush, Sean? MERCILESS. WE expected THEM to get over it and support our winner, didn't we? So, you regroup and come back next time. It's the American way. Sometimes you win, sometimes you don't.

Your show today all about Obama disappoints me. Many, many of us do not share your enthusiam for the President-elect and get tired of the show business view of what is supposed to be "the new day". Thought you were different. He will be my President in January and I will continue to respect the office, but the jury is still out about whether or not I can respect the man. He has already decided that I am selfish and unpatriotic because of my family's income level - not much respect there. My choice was important, too - I voted for an experienced, heroic man who was outspent 4 - 1 because of truly wealthy people like you. I chose not to watch your show as I did before.

Your show today all about Obama disappoints me. Many, many of us do not share your enthusiam for the President-elect and get tired of the show business view of what is supposed to be "the new day". Thought you were different. He will be my President in January and I will continue to respect the office, but the jury is still out about whether or not I can respect the man. He has already decided that I am selfish and unpatriotic because of my family's income level - not much respect there. My choice was important, too - I voted for an experienced, heroic man who was outspent 4 - 1 because of truly wealthy people like you. I chose not to watch your show as I did before.

I heard Oprah state how sorry she was for the Republicans and how they must feel, but that now we must get behind Barack and come together for the good of the nation. Sure Oprah, I'll stand behind him just as strongly as you stood behind President Bush, how's that? Oh and as far as those tears that were shed for Barack , how many have you shed for the infants that are born alive due to botched abortions but that Barack voted four times not to allow them medical attention but rather just let them to lay there and suffer until they take their last breath?

I'm not a fan of Oprah or Barrack. But I can relate to the moment. That is, I understand how she could be swept up in the moment and cry on a stranger's shoulder. She has hope for the future. We have an African-American for President...an event that many thought would/could not happen in their life-time. That's great, and so I understand her emotions and the enthusiasm expressed on election night.

I hope that Barrack proves me wrong. But I don't share the optimism that Oprah and others have for a new tomorrow. Also, I'm saddened that liberals, who obviously are united in 2008, could not find anything in common with those of us in the "red" states in 2000 or 2004. For the last 8 years, it seems they had nothing to offer but disdain for Bush and his conservative supporters. I don't think that was warranted or fair. If Barrack becomes a President for all, then I will be happy to call him our President. If he caters to the far left, I think it will be a disaster.

In short, I appreciate the event – as being historical and hopeful (in regard to this country’s ability to see beyond race)…and I appreciate Oprah’s passion (for her beliefs and a better tomorrow). I just wish Barrack and Oprah had a more realistic worldview and how this country should govern itself.
.

Um, what about her man Stedmont (spelling) ? Why didn't she use him as a human hankie?

Republicans have "Joe the Plumber"; Democrats (we) have the "Human Hankie"

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Mark Bieganski published on November 7, 2008 10:09 AM.

Sun-Times exclusive: Weeping Oprah's 'Mr. Man' revealed, to be on Friday's show was the previous entry in this blog.

Video: Sun-Times' Obama cover one of Oprah Winfrey's favorite things is the next entry in this blog.

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