Dear ABC,


In the vacuum created by the impending departure of Oprah Winfrey's show in September, 2011, I, Teddy Wayne, have officially changed my name to Horpa and would like to formally announce my availability to host a network talk show at that time. Next week is good for me, too.

      Now, I admit that I am not, as some analysts might term Oprah, an eminently relatable-to and empathetic middle-aged African-American woman capable of forging instant bonds with anyone. I'm more what some of my former girlfriends might call a frequently moody and socially awkward 30-year-old Caucasian man-child who gets bored if the conversation doesn't revolve around him.

      My gender, race, and political correctness will also prevent me from spouting catchy affirmations such as, "You go, girl!"  I may, instead, say, "You may proceed, if that is what you so desire, empowered female guest who is unencumbered by any historico-patriarchal domination."

      Oprah trademarked the phrase "an aha moment" to express a "flash of understanding."  I am presently submitting a trademark application on "an a-ha moment" to describe the instant that one is seized with nostalgia for the Norwegian supergroup a-ha's 1985 ballad "Take On Me."

     To nip any controversy in the bud, I will invite Jonathan Franzen over for dinner.  Not to discuss his books, but because I want to tell people that Jonathan Franzen once came to my apartment for dinner. Still, he is free and perhaps should be encouraged to accept the invitation and then turn it down.

      My magazine, H, the Horpa Magazine, Not By Sapphire But With Her Support Nonetheless, featuring me on the cover each month with flattering Facebook photos, will cover the issues that matter to me most: if the hot bartender is actually interested in me or just being friendly for tips, whether the Mets will ever get their act together, whether I have OCD -- that is, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and not over-the-counter drugs, or osteochondritis dissecans, or an overseas control date, or...sorry, had some off-center discourse there.

      My political and cultural influence is widespread.  Many credit me for getting my friend Andrew Moscow elected to our high school's 1996 student-body presidency, thanks to the really cool "Dandy Andy" campaign posters I created with Microsoft Paint. And when I stopped eating red meat temporarily in 1989 after seeing "Bambi," so did my younger brother.

      Finally, to prove my philanthropy also knows no bounds, I will donate $200 of my own money (don't cash the check for a week) to the Horpa Leadership Academy for Very Flexible Postgraduate Women Into Yoga, in Terra Haute, Indiana.

      Please count me out if the job doesn't include all-pre -conditions-(including OCD)-more-than-welcome health insurance.  Thank you for your attention.






Teddy Wayne's debut novel, "Kapitoil," will be published by Harper Perennial this April.




April 24: "[The HST] lifted a curtain from our view of the universe, changing it so profoundly that no human can look at the stars in the same way..."

Kenneth Calhoun (Black Moon) and Lysley Tenorio (Monstress) of the Discover Great New Writers program on B-movies, heritage, and finales.

Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
In the Light of What We Know

Zia Haider Rahman's mystery of a brilliant Bangladeshi mathematician's past barrels through the Ivy League, London high finance, and spy-haunted Afghanistan in a page-turning tale of exile, intrigue and the price of friendship. A Discover Great New Writers selection.

The People's Platform

Once touted as the foundation for tomorrow's digital democracy, the Internet is increasingly ruled by a few corporate giants, while millions of contributors till its fields for free. Astra Taylor looks at why the web has failed to deliver a communitarian cyberscape, and offers a compelling case for restoring its original vision.

A Private Venus

Dubbed "the Italian Simenon," Giorgio Scerbanenco (1911-1969) began his crime-writing career with books set in the USA, but quickly shifted scene closer to home, the city of Milan.  In this adventure, appearing in English for the first time, his underdog hero Dr. Duca Lamberti finds himself in the middle of a seedy, scantily clad criminal racket, where the presence of an outsider could result in death.