In the past 20 years, says Lake Park mom of three Charlette Cummings, she’s had three Oprah-free days.
That’s what waitress Cummings calls days when not a soul tells her she looks like retired TV talker Oprah Winfrey.
“A few weeks ago, someone told me she believed I’m really Oprah but I’m waitressing for a TV prank,” Cummings says. “Even when I tell them I’m not her, they don’t believe me.”
Cummings is serving tables at PF Chang’s at the Gardens Mall in Palm Beach Gardens these days. On some shifts, diners at a half dozen tables pull out their cellphones to take her picture or pose with her.
“I get quite a few 35-40 percent tips,” she said. “It’s definitely because of who I look like.”
And after 24 years of constant reminders of her looks, even with freshly cropped hair, she’s starting to think she can make a better living as Ms. O.
“A party planner saw me and we’ve been talking about me making celebrity lookalike appearances at private functions,” Cummings said. “Why not? I never thought about it but I can’t escape what I look like. But I’ve been practicing her signature.”
At 42, Cummings is 15 years younger than the real thing. But at 5 feet tall and a weight hovering between 135 and 231 pounds — like the real Oprah, Cummings has wildly fluctuating weight — Cummings has Oprah’s body type. Same eyes. Same mouth. Same raspy voice.
Amazingly, Cummings says she’s not an Oprah buff and never even tried to contact her.
“I did watch her show some but I never built my days around it,” Cummings said. “I know about her what everybody knows.”