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March 13, 2013

12:03
P.M.

The Reliable Source Live

Total Responses: 77

About the hosts

About the host

About the topic

Washington Post columnists Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts were online Wednesday, March 13, at noon ET to discuss your favorite gossip, celebrity sightings and their recent columns.

Past Reliable Source chats
Q.

Amy Argetsinger :

Hello everyone, and welcome back to the weekly live discussion. So, what exactly did Kate Middleton mean to say and why are we so sure she’s having a girl? Sonia Sotomayor and Rita Moreno conducted a hilarious Q&A together – but wouldn’t allow reporters in. Bobby Jindal, Amy Klobuchar and President Obama bantered with their best jokes at the Gridiron Club dinner. Demi Moore wants alimony. Valerie Harper has a good attitude about cancer. Change your passwords, everyone, it’s a new celebrity hacking scandal. David Shuster gets married. George W. Bush’s artwork shows promise. Michelle Obama is on the cover of Vogue, again. And VIP milestone birthdays for Bob Michel, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Alma Powell. And we’ve got a brand-new format – what do you think?

Q.

Dennis Rodman

Why does the media pay any attention to the Dennis Rodman Freak Show? He's an absolute embarrasement.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Yeah, I'm pretty much over it myself.

– March 13, 2013 12:04 PM
Q.

newest reality show

The papal conclave, its got it all, intrigue, oddly costumed characters, the smoke cam, and Dennis Rodman. I'm hooked, and I'm not Catholic.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

And I hope you're enjoying the work of our very own Italian-speaking Style colleague Jason Horowitz.

– March 13, 2013 12:05 PM
Q.

Downton Abbey

I finally caught up on Downton Abbey and just finished Season 3. Even though I knew it was coming, still totally gutted about Matthew's death! :( I know it doesn't make for good drama but I sort of with Dan Stevens and Michelle Dockery had planned their exits together so Matthew and Mary could just ride off in the sunset together, haha. Why DID so many of the principal actors choose not to come back? Its's been such a successful show. What are your thoughts on the next season? I'm a bit nervous the show might start trending downward. The new character Rose is quite annoying.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

You know, I decided to give up TV for Lent once I realized I was glutted with about eight hours of appointment television a week. I made some shrewd exceptions for crucial public-affairs programming (i.e., the Oscars, "American Idol"), but have otherwise been very strict. That means that I missed the season finale of "Downton Abbey" --- and you know what? I didn't really miss it. I probably won't bother to watch the episode stored up on my DVR come Easter. And I probably won't bother with next season. It all went downhill dramatically after season one.

– March 13, 2013 12:08 PM
Q.

The New Pope

I'm on the edge of my seat watching the Vatican Smoke Cam to see if Dennis Rodman is elected pope. I hope his first act is to elevate Father Guido Sarducci to Cardinal.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Imagine the pope's wardrobe! Just. Imagine.

– March 13, 2013 12:10 PM
Q.

Anne Hathaway v. world's oldest profession

So I was a bit confused about Anne Hathaway plea at the end of her Oscar acceptance speech about wanting there no more like Fantine. What was she saying... that she was anti-proverty advocate or anti-sex trade advocate? She's big on Ayn Rand http://www.interviewmagazine.com/film/anne-hathaway-1/, so that seems out of step. I'm all for it if Anne Hathaway takes up on the cause of the miserable plight of prostitutions around the world, but it if it was just a cheap ploy on her part to make her role seem more socially relevant today then it really is (stock character of the dying ingénue) without anything else behind it, then that kind of sucks.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Sigh, Anne Hathaway. She's taken a lot of unfair abuse lately in the blogosphere, but yes, I winced about that. My theory is that she is so sensitive to feedback and realized that her earlier awards speeches were a little self-involved and tedious, and so decided that she should make some gracious sweeping world-peace type statement instead for her final speech of the season.

– March 13, 2013 12:11 PM
Q.

conclave

"And I hope you're enjoying the work of our very own Italian-speaking Style colleague Jason Horowitz." I am indeed.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Follow him on Twitter too, as he analyzes the latest puffs of smoke.

– March 13, 2013 12:12 PM
Q.

Kate Middleton question

I never will get the "modernizing" of the monarchy since it's based on an idea of people have different blood from "the rest of us." You'd figure DNA being discovered would have ended that. Girl or not, my question for her would be if she'd be okay if that girl decided to decline being the heir in favor of a younger brother or sister, would she put pressure on her child to reconsider.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Let's take the royal part out of this for a minute: You're the oldest child in a rich, well-known family. Lots and lots of perks, but a lot of unwanted attention, too. Do you take over the family business? Do you tell mom and dad "Thanks, but no thanks?" Or are you pressured into the role? Is there a middle ground? Seems that's been an issue, on way or another, with all royal familes.  

– March 13, 2013 12:15 PM
Q.

Pope Jokes

Not to rain on the parade of funny jokes, but it's weird that people act as if Pope Jokes are this new thing. Mocking the Papacy isn't exactly a new thing. It's been going on in earnest since the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century. If anything, it's much milder today then it would have been in 1856.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Being Pope has always been a tough gig --- apart from the unlimited riches and red shoes. You have to really, really want it.

– March 13, 2013 12:16 PM
Q.

New layout

Jeez you guys. We now have to click on the headline of every Reliable Source entry, even if it's only a couple of sentences long, in order to read it? I've read the column since I moved to DC 15 years ago, but sorry, I guess I'm cashing out. I've got a really slow computer and limited time to read the paper in the morning. It's too bad that the Post doesn't mind sacrificing a chunk of your readership just because they don't bother to test their grand ideas on people who actually USE the site.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

If you're an old-fashioned read-the-paper-over-coffee person like me, a good chunk of the material is in the print edition -- and it's quick. Hang in there. 

– March 13, 2013 12:17 PM
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Thanks for your feedback. I hear what you're saying. The software interface is quite a bit different both on our side and your side; we didn't quite realize until the new format (which for the most part is WAY more readable and workable) went live how little content would be available from the index page, and five days into this, we are still making aesthetic and navigation adjustments that I hope you'll bear with. A lot of the improvements over the years with our old format were based on direct feedback from engaged readers like yourself here in the weekly chat, so keep the feedback coming.

 

Having said that . . . This also sounds a little bit like someone complaining that we've made it so much harder to read our column because his neighbors got a new gate so he can no longer skim their copy of the paper on their doorstep. This business isn't cheap, and it can't be 100 percent free for readers; if you're not paying for a subscription or an individual copy, you'll pay with clicks. Sorry! 

– March 13, 2013 12:17 PM
Q.

unfair abuse

I don't hate Anne Hathaway (c'mon, that smile), but I do hate the "I don't know why people hate Anne Hathaway" innocent act people put on. It's like they're acting that Anne Hathaway is within earshot. Anne Hathaway is super pretty, super famous, gets paid tons of money for a job where most of it is sitting in trailer and doing press tours then it about acting. Right there, "hate you" response isn't nice, but the idea that it's totally non-understandable is being a bit silly.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

That's just the garden-variety envy of celebrities. I think Anne fuels the fire with a series of missteps and statements that annoy even the most laid-back fans. Frankly, she should just stay quiet for a while.

– March 13, 2013 12:19 PM
Q.

O'Malley and the Saw Doctors

Hey, your piece on O'Malley playing with the Saw Doctors said he is wearing a red Galway football jersey. I could swear that it's a business suit from the picture appearing in the print edition. Did you use a file photo ????
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Duh, yes. I wish we had a photographer on site for every one of these little "hey, isn't that" sightings, but we generally don't. In the meantime, there is some shaky grainy video of someone I'm assured is Gov. O'Malley taking the stage with the Saw Doctors, wearing the heck out of that Galway jersey.

– March 13, 2013 12:21 PM
Q.

Woodbridge

This is a little late, but I just had to say that Drake LaRoche is the coolest kid in town because he knows Jason Aldean, one of my faves! Woo hoo!!
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Not just one of my favorite stories of the week, but one of my favorite stories of the month. Drake LaRoche: Luckiest 11-year-old boy in America?, 2/26/13

– March 13, 2013 12:22 PM
Q.

Yachts

I must say, I'm impressed with Michael Saylor finding all sorts of money to spend on a new yacht. I thought I heard recently that Capitol Hill is, or was, trying to close tax loopholes vis-a-vis yachts and private jets. And, it's a good thing his first name isn't Taylor, LOL.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Wouldn't it be great if he married Taylor Swift? And she became Taylor Saylor? Or maybe he'd become Michael Swift, because you know, kids these days.

– March 13, 2013 12:22 PM
Q.

Rita Moreno

She is really 81 years old? Wow, she looks terrific.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Experts agree: Rita Moreno does look great. Of course, I have to take our witnesses's word for it: No passes for reporters.

– March 13, 2013 12:23 PM
Q.

If You Aint Catholic

Then shut up about selecting a Pope. and no I am sorry if you aint Catholic you shouldnt be reporting from Rome about it for the WP.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

That's totally unfair. If you believe that the only people qualified to report on the selection of the new pope are Catholics, then you must also believe the only reporters qualified for ANY beat comes from the same background. That's simply not true ---sometimes an outside eye sees more than an insider ---and opens a massive can of worms.

– March 13, 2013 12:24 PM
Q.

Re: Downton Abbey

I still like the show but my biggest beef with it has been the pacing, frankly. We've already covered 10 years in 3 seasons. The Edwardian and WWI periods are so rich with potential material, I don't know why the writers felt such a rush to jump to the 1920s.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

My problem was realizing, during a story arc set in 1922, that it was 1922 and Sybil was 24, which means she was 14 when the show began, which she clearly was not. I have a lot of problems with that show. Mostly, though, that it became tedious.

– March 13, 2013 12:25 PM
Q.

Gov O'Malley

I appreciate his loyalty to Galway football, but I was disappointed that he didn't go up on stage in his traditional tight black shirt.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Maybe tight black t-shirts don't play so well in Iowa these days.

(Is Md. Gov. Martin O’Malley running for president or not?, 2/21/13)

– March 13, 2013 12:27 PM
Q.

The Price of Fame?

Are you both so easily recognized in the DC area that you couldn't have purchased a ticket to see Rita Moreno and Justice Sotomayor? Or are reporters on the honor system?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

What I probably should have explained better: This event was publicized only minimally and sold out immediately -- days before we even knew it was happening. Otherwise we would have happily shelled out for a ticket and gone and written a story. Normally, of course, most public speaking events, ticketed or otherwise, reserve free spots for covering press, so ordinarily we can get into things like this regardless of whether we have a ticket. But not in this case. . . . Reporters have many forms of honor but nothing that applied to the silly rules here really.

– March 13, 2013 12:31 PM
Q.

Marry Taylor Swift

Isn't he like three times her age? Most certainly at least violates the 1/2 + 7 rule.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Yes, but she has mad swagger, that Taylor Swift -- almost as much as January Jones -- and she has also been known to make absurd decisions when it comes to men, so why not?

– March 13, 2013 12:31 PM
Q.

buy a ticket?

So if the Sotomayor/Moreno event was public, why not buy a ticket? If a newspaper wants to cover an event, the cost of that event is usually less than the hourly wage of the employee who would be doing the coverage. Free attendance for coverage is a trade-off (and an ethical quandary, to boot), so why the refusal to pay?
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

The event was sold out by the time we found out about it and no tickets were available. To your larger point: Most reporters covering events aren't there because they want to be, they are there because they believe there is a news value and want to report on it.  The tradition of free access for the press to events is a long one; the Post still pays for travel and all expenses which can run into six figures for covering the president.

– March 13, 2013 12:32 PM
Q.

Kate Upton

Just finished chatting with Tom Sietsema, and in a review he called Blue Duck Tavern the Kate Upton of restaurants. So I was wondering--are she & Detroit's Justin Verlander still together?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Ha -- the Kate Upton of restaurants! I want to read what that's about . . . So far as I know they're still together. Haven't heard otherwise.

– March 13, 2013 12:32 PM
Q.

Valerie Harper

Anyone else think its a little ghoulish for ET and the other celebrity shows to be showing so much of Valerie Harper's interviews, I know she's doing them, but I get a sense that we're watching a desperate woman clinging to hope that will soon be dashed, and I feel like a voyeur.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

From what I've read, she doesn't sound like she's clinging to hope, it sounds like she's made peace with her circumstances.

– March 13, 2013 12:34 PM
Q.

Dennis Rodman

My girlfriend and I have been fighting lately. Any chance I could hire Dennis Rodman to help out and mediate our disagreements? I own a video camera, if that would help his decisions.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I'm sure if you just tweet at him you can get his attention for this.

– March 13, 2013 12:35 PM
Q.

Pope mania

I am a cradle Catholic and I confess (ha) that I don't understand the widespread public fascination with this particular conclave. I worry a lot about how conservative and rigid the next pontiff might be, but I don't get what others with less stake in the contest find so compelling? Is it that this is such an arcane, tradition-bound process--smoke signals in a Twitter age--that fascinates people?
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

I'm not a Catholic and am fascinated by the whole process. The next pope will have enormous influence on a global scale, so I'm very curious about which direction the cardinals go in. There's also the grand, historic traditions, which is in itself interesting to watch. So lots of angles for everyone.

– March 13, 2013 12:35 PM
Q.

The Kate Upton of Restaurants

It only has seating up top?
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Serves oversized duck breasts.

– March 13, 2013 12:36 PM
Q.

New RS layout

I can't decide whether I like the new layout or not, but since I hated the old one so much, I feel like I can't criticize this one. I'm just happy for the change.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Here's what I like about the new format: You can glance at the main page and see so much more than you used to. Previously, you could only see the most recent five items  -- with no quick and easy way to see stories that were even 12 hours old, in some cases; which discouraged us from posting more. . . . This is the same format that most of the Post's blogs already have, of course, and we're still in the process of adapting it to our own needs. . . . And again, we're eager for specific recommendations about improving its navigability, so please let us know: reliablesource@washpost.com

– March 13, 2013 12:37 PM
Q.

Sorry

its our Pope. Not yours. Wasnt too long ago that if you were Catholic in Virginny you were lynched by Rev Robertson and Rev Falwells supporters who along with the Revs were KKK members. Too many of my relatives have died at the hands of the Protestant English and Protestant Swedes, Germans etc. Butt out of our business. Only good Protestant is a dead one!
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

The 16th century just called and wants its wars back.

– March 13, 2013 12:38 PM
Q.

The Bachelor

He made the wrong decision. And she made the wrong decision -- by accepting his proposal. This feels like Rock of Love, Season 1 all over again, where she has second thoughts and Bret wished he had gone with the runner up.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

If we don't heed the lessons of Rock of Love Season 1, we are all doomed to repeat their mistakes.

– March 13, 2013 12:38 PM
Q.

Taylor Swift Fan Mail

Do you happen to know if the pile pulled from the trash included the letter I wrote? Signed -- a 37 year old man
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Pro tip: Please lay off the glitter pen. Taylor may be allergic.

– March 13, 2013 12:39 PM
Q.

re IF YOU AINT CATHOLIC

"Then shut up about selecting a Pope" OK, fine -- then get it off of EVERY TV CHANNEL all the time. I woke up this morning to "Breaking News": "Is that smoke black? It looks kind of black. Let's consult three different correspondents to find out what this means." And, for that matter, if the church agrees to stay out of secular politics, and especially to stop trying to dictate the reproductive choices of NON-Catholic women (through both laws and health insurance policies), then the rest of us will agree not to pay any attention to its selection of its leader.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Not happening, which is why I'm interested.

– March 13, 2013 12:40 PM
Q.

Peepal Conclave

Can't wait to see the entires in this year's Peep Show: I am thinking there will be several Peepal Conclaves.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I don't think I'm giving away any secrets if I tell you that the pope was a very popular theme among this year's entries.

– March 13, 2013 12:40 PM
Q.

only Catholics can cover the pope.....

....and only illegal aliens can cover illegal immigration issues, only the homeless can cover the homeless, and only the poor can cover poverty.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Tricky, isn't it?

– March 13, 2013 12:41 PM
Q.

If You Ain't Venezuelan

Then shut up about selecting a new leader of Venezuela. and no I am sorry if you aint Venezuelan you shouldnt be reporting from Caracus about it for the WP. Just agreeing with your other reader who feels strongly about who should cover the Pope news.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Sarcasm appreciated and point well made.

– March 13, 2013 12:42 PM
Q.

ABC new breaking news email this morning...

... totaly made me giggle: Black Smoke Emerges From Sistine Chapel Chimney: No New Pope
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I wonder how many times they can put out that headline before people get tired of it.

– March 13, 2013 12:42 PM
Q.

Ruth Bader Ginsberg

Thanks for the nice piece about her 80th birthday. If you saw the recent New Yorker profile of her, they mentioned that since her uber-gregarious husband died, she has had to push herself to be more social. So it was good to see her smiling. She is a class act in a group that has become more and more alien to her.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

She really loves the opera, and it was a sweet night for everyone there. So good for her.

– March 13, 2013 12:43 PM
Q.

page layout

I worked for a newspaper once that did a redesign that was met with howls of complaints, and we got hundreds of phone calls, which was more than management expected. Once everyone started to compare notes, we realized that most of the complainers weren't even subscribers, and what they were most upset with the fact that we moved the lottery numbers from page 1 to page 2 so now they had to buy the paper to see if they had a winning ticket, instead of just checking the number on the newstand
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

That's very funny.

– March 13, 2013 12:43 PM
Q.

Valerie Harper

This morning on my Facebook page, there was a message, allegedly from Valerie Harper, indicating a website where people could buy autographed copies of "I, Rhoda." Is this for real or is it a scam?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Would it bother you if the message really came from her book publicists and not Valerie herself?

– March 13, 2013 12:44 PM
Q.

pope belongs to the world

Disagree with the "for Catholics only" poster, the pope is a world figure, indeed the church promotes this and he makes news wherever he goes, whenever he releases a statement. The coverage may be a bit over the top, but that's our 24/7 news cycle, and the new social media tools.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Forget white smoke. Maybe the cardinals should tweet the new guy's selection.

– March 13, 2013 12:45 PM
Q.

B'More Cat and Chat Lover

Gosh, people are crabby today! I thought it was just me, and that's why I'm hiding out in my office. BTW, I love your chats, but am not sure that WaPo has the best and brightest IT team. I have struggled through some of the website changes in the past couple of years. While I understand the need for clicks, etc., you won't get clicks with a frustrating user experience. That said, I thought your explanation about "paying with clicks" was excellent. Oh, and I am a Sunday edition WaPo subscriber up in B'more; it is the paper I grew up with. Thanks!
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Thanks! Do you really think the new format is harder to follow? I mean, we made you click previously, right? Be specific with your complaints and suggestions, and we'd love to hear them in email so we don't bog down the chat too much. reliablesource@washpost.com

– March 13, 2013 12:46 PM
Q.

He's our pope

Isn't the First Amendment great? That anyone can cover the pope no matter what their religion is.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Hooray for the founding fathers. 

– March 13, 2013 12:46 PM
Q.

Pope

So the Cardinals have started 0-3. Good thing it's a 162 game season. (I'm going to put that on my Facebook page right now).
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

You start a pool on which vote will be the winner?

– March 13, 2013 12:48 PM
Q.

BEAUTY AND BRAINS

It seems Ashley Judd is still seriously considering a run for the Senate. Do you think the fact that Mitch McConnell has hair like my grandma will help Ashley ? She is seriously much better looking than anyone in the entire Congress.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Ha. But no, I don't think it will help her. Keep an eye out for an all-new installment of JuddWatch this afternoon!

– March 13, 2013 12:48 PM
Q.

Assaults on journalism

What is the bigger threat to journalism: a) being kept out of the Gridiron Dinner, b) being kept out of the Sotomayor/Moreno gathering, c) being kept away from President Obama and Tiger Woods golfing, or d) all those NBC News Bush/Russert/Clinton hires ?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I'm going counterintuitive here -- I'm going with (c). Because, if they're not coming clean about golfing with Tiger Woods, what else are they not coming clean on?

– March 13, 2013 12:49 PM
Q.

Cardinals

Wearing all that red is a little flashy for a group that dedicates itself to humility, isn't it? They might want to reconsider the outfits.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Blood of Christ, isn't it? Quick, this outsider needs a Catholic to weigh in here....

– March 13, 2013 12:49 PM
Q.

skimming

This is how people read online. They scan. They don't read every word. They don't consume according to any order you think you have established. That's why it's a bad user experience not to be able to skim the stories before deciding whether you want to commit to clicking deeper.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I agree. Take a look at our page and tell me where you don't have enough information. Looking at it right now, I feel like have a good sense of what I'd be interested in clicking on to read more about and what I'm happy to move on past. And I'll take your answer off the air: reliablesource@washpost.com

– March 13, 2013 12:52 PM
Q.

Ain't Catholic

The reporting tends to ignore the beliefs of Catholics who believe this is a spiritual process led by God, in favor of treating it like a political election. That's just disrespectful of believers. You can note their belief while still considering how human factors may influence the process. It also tends to come from a position that the Catholic church, or any church, should be a democracy, when that's simply not the case. However large or small, churches are private organizations and no one is compelled to belong if they don't like the power structure. Reporting should come from the standpoint that it is what it is, not that it's obliged to seek the approval of world society. The biggest mistake is to believe that a church's mission is to be "relevant."
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

That's for the church to decide, isn't it? The problem, of course, comes from the intersection of this "private organization's" religious beliefs and government policy. Last time I checked churches are tax exempt and weigh in on a number of social policy issues.

– March 13, 2013 12:53 PM
Q.

Cardinal Red

Yeah, it's that Blood of Christ thing....or they're big Stan Musial fans.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Ha! God will get you for that.

– March 13, 2013 12:54 PM
Q.

Pope

To say other people can't be fascinated and interested in the Pope's election actually diminishes the Pope's position as a world leader. Only important to current Catholics (because gosh forbidden someone could be fascinated enough about the pagentry and history of the church to learn its teaching and CONVERT).
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Don't think conversion is the driving force here.

– March 13, 2013 12:55 PM
Q.

Dowager Dutchess

Did you see the 60 minutes interview with Maggie Smith? She was charming, yet clearly uncomfortable with having to do it. I'm guessing she was doing it as a favor to promote Quartet, rather than in connection with Downton Abbey.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I did not see it, but here it is. . . . It's funny, I keep seeing stories on the Web about "Did you know the Dowager Countess used to be young? See pictures of a young Maggie Smith!" It kind of makes me sad to realize there's a whole universe of people who weren't aware of this two-time Oscar winner until two years ago.

 

BTW,  and stop me if you've heard this one before, but a friend of mine went to the Golden Globes a few years ago and recalls seeing Dame Maggie Smith in a long, laughing, familiar forearm-touching conversation with . . . Keith Richards! But we shouldn't be surprised; they're part of the same Swingin' London generation of hipsters. Of course they're old pals.

– March 13, 2013 12:56 PM
Q.

Pope Alarm

Did you know you can sign up to receive a text or email when the Pope is chosen? http://www.popealarm.com/
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Good to know.

– March 13, 2013 12:56 PM
Q.

Leftover question from last Wednesday

When is the big snow supposed to hit?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Leftover answer: Any minute now!

– March 13, 2013 12:57 PM
Q.

Pope Pool

My best friend's brother is a priest and he started a Pope Pool in his church. $5 to play, and you draw the name of a Cardinal. The winner gets the pot.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

I'd do that.

– March 13, 2013 12:57 PM
Q.

The Bachelor

I thought Lindsey was probably the better fit with his family, but the fake little girl lisp made her seem immature, like she'd been babied. Katherine seems more new-agey "spiritual" than Christian, at least from what I saw, but if she's open to jumping into his family with both feet, as she sounds, that may work itself out. I actually think this one may work since he/they seem to have gone into it with the idea of finding a spouse rather than the perfect grand passion most folks seem to be looking for.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

If it turns out I missed the season of "The Bachelor" where they go on to date for more than six weeks, I'll be really bummed.

– March 13, 2013 12:57 PM
Q.

Judd watch

Amy: Google "Ashley Judd hockey poster", which should put to rest any question about her "Kentucky-ness." That was in every dorm room in my college days--well, in the boys' dorm, anyway.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

How many votes does that get her?

– March 13, 2013 12:58 PM
Q.

You're the oldest child in a rich, well-known family. Lots and lots of perks, but a lot of unwanted attention, too. Do you take over the family business? Do you tell mom and dad "Thanks, but no thanks?"

Pretty much what King Edward did. And poor George didn't want the job either!
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I think I missed an interesting thread here. Just putting it out.

– March 13, 2013 12:59 PM
Q.

Announcing the Pope's election

Yeah, but the Pope's parents are gonna be mad when the new Pope puts a picture of red shoes up on his Facebook page before calling his parents about his new job.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

I love the idea of the pope's mother:

"So, how's Leo?"

"Busy. He's pope now. It's always something. Hardly ever calls."

"Boys!"

– March 13, 2013 1:00 PM
Q.

Do you tell mom and dad "Thanks, but no thanks?"

In which case you're sticking a younger brother or sister with the same dilemma.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

That's how the abdication game works, yes. (Is that what we're talking about here? Sorry.)

– March 13, 2013 1:00 PM
Q.

Cardinal Red

Not the Blood of Christ. Seriously, can anyone weigh in here? (duh) It's to remind them that they may need to shed their own blood through martyrdom. "Scarlet reminds the Cardinals that they must be willing to give of themselves for the Church, even to the point of shedding their blood."
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

See? We learn here every week.

– March 13, 2013 1:01 PM
Q.

Pope isn't exactly going to be enjoying his golden years

Seems folks are having fun with this idea of a retired pope, but isn't Benedict XVI super sick and near death and that's why he's retiring?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I haven't seen the implication that he's near death, just that he feels he's too feeble and frail for the job. It's a bold decision to make.

– March 13, 2013 1:01 PM
Q.

Sheesh! People are Crotchety Today!!!!

Someone doesn't like Downton Abbey (would you rather watch Dallas?), someone doesn't like Anne Hathaway, Tom doesn't like my favorite restaurant (Willow in Arlington), someone doesn't like non-Catholics reporting on the Pope............sheesh! I am crotchety abourt everone being so crotchety today. You kids get off my lawn!
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

We are all in a mood today, aren't we?

– March 13, 2013 1:01 PM
Q.

St Patrick's Day

I am new to DC and trying to figure out what I should do to celebrate the day which honors St Patrick, who drove all the snakes out of Ireland (and to DC, I imagine). What is there to do here?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I think we all go down to the National Zoo to drink some green beer with the tentacled snake, right?

– March 13, 2013 1:03 PM
Q.

Interested in the Papal election

So, does this mean that foreigners can't be interested in our Presidential elections because they aren't Americans? The fact of the matter is, decisions on doctrine can and do affect the lives of others that are not Catholic. A dramatic change in a doctrinal issue like birth control has ramifications to non-Catholics is population issues and accessibility, for example. So, it really is a big deal to people. It is also fascinating.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Ditto.

– March 13, 2013 1:03 PM
Q.

Mocking

It's not so much "you aren't Catholic, don't cover this" as it is mocking Roman Catholics for this process of selection and the job itself which has a long history of being citing as the reason discrimination in America towards Catholic (particularly new Irish, Italian, Polish, etc immigrants in 19th century). I guess it's the combo French Canadian and Irish in me, but when I hear "Catholic bigotry" that I'm never sure if it's referring to bigotry from others towards Catholicism or from Catholics towards others.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Maybe both?

– March 13, 2013 1:04 PM
Q.

Barbara Walters

It just occurred to me that Barbara Walters and Whoppie Goldberg both dated Frank Langella? That's kind of gross. Don't you think?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Oh, I think it must have added an exciting frisson on "The View." Did they ever compare notes on the air? It kind of makes me want to read Frank Langella's memoir. He dated everyone.

– March 13, 2013 1:06 PM
Q.

Layout

FWIW, I agree with the previous poster re: not not having time to click through to each story, and I also agree with/understand your point about no free lunch. In my case, I'm choosing not to pay with clicks. It's too bad b/c your page was one of the ones I consistently checked each morning, Also, some people do subscribe but also read on line... particularly the parts of the paper that are perfect for a mid-morning break (i.e., RS).
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

But you had to click with the old format -- right? So tell me what's different and how we can fix it. Be specific! (Just not here. Go here instead: reliablesource@washpost.com)

– March 13, 2013 1:07 PM
Q.

JR Ewing

I knew it was coming for the past four months, but was not ready to see JR Ewing die. Didn't he die like a half dozen other times through the original run of the series and the later TV movies? Can't they just say, heck with it, and bring in like Don Cheadle to play JR after he has some surgery and was on the run from those South American bad guys played by Tony Almeida?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Cheadle is a good actor. Totally up to the task.

– March 13, 2013 1:08 PM
Q.

Ashley Judd

I kind of like "Judd-ment Day" for the day if and when she announces. Also "Judd for youself" is kind of a catchy slogan.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I like the way you think.

– March 13, 2013 1:08 PM
Q.

Anne Hathaway

I think if she had lost to Sally Field or whoever, probably would have been better for her public image and her career. Although that's kind of sad since I was raised on the "everybody loves a winner" school of parenting that Hathaway herself was more then likely brought up on too.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Anne will be just fine -- and gunning to add a "Best Actress" Oscar to the collection. So I don't feel too sorry for her.

– March 13, 2013 1:09 PM
Q.

David Shuster

I read the story on his wedding that you guys linked to from your page. I was always a big fan and thought MSNBC totally threw him under the bus because he made one (honest) comment about how the Hillary campaign was using Chelsea in 2008. But my question which I don't think was fully addressed in the delightful story -- what is he doing now?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

He's working in talk radio and doing other broadcast work, I believe. I know he was a regular on Current, but I have no idea what's going on with their lineup since it got sold.

– March 13, 2013 1:10 PM
Q.

New Format

I've never complained about formatting before, either with the reboots of the column or the chats, but I'm going to agree with your other posters - I can't stand the new format. Too much clicking is required, so I'm less likely to click on it at all. I've been reading the column daily for about 15 years, but this might be the end - it simply take too long to read if I have to click each story individually. At least with the old format, I could make it through 5 stories, click, and see if there were more stories.
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Give us a little time-- we're working to make this as reader-friendly as possible.

– March 13, 2013 1:12 PM
Q.

Priest starting a Pope Pool.

Wait, isn't gambling still gambling, even if it's based on something you're affiliated with? What next Notre Dame football pools?!?!?!?
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Shocking!

– March 13, 2013 1:12 PM
Q.

Zooey Deschanel

I'm worried about Zooey Deschanel's eyelids. Wait, who is Zooey Deschanel again?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

If you, like me, were irresistibly drawn to clicking on this headline --  Zooey Deschanel’s eyelid bumps likely benign: experts -- then you, like me, are an idiot. Don't click on it, okay? You're better than that.

– March 13, 2013 1:13 PM
Q.

My favorite Pope -- Olivia

I have a theory that they named her Olivia Pope because her job is to cover up for other people -- which is something the Popes have been unfortunately been doing too much lately.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

I knew I was missing some key plotpoints during my sabbatical from "Scandal."

– March 13, 2013 1:14 PM
Q.

IN THE BUSHES

Jeb Bush must be kidding. Testing the waters for a run at the Oval Office ? I won't vote for another Bush until Kate Bush decides to take a shot.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Kate Bush 2016! There's got to be a good campaign them in "running up that hill," no?

– March 13, 2013 1:17 PM
Q.

Now that's a specialty

There are experts on Zooey Deschanel's eyelids? I wonder if they'd ever branch out and check out Joan Van Ark's. She looks perpetually surprised.
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

And you know I'm going to click on that headline when the experts release their study on Joan Van Ark's eyelids, damn me. . . . Hey, isn't it about time to wrap up?

– March 13, 2013 1:18 PM
Q.

David Shuster

I thought MSNBC let him go because he was doing camera tests for CNN?
A.
Amy Argetsinger :

Yep, it's a tricky business, having conversations with your maybe-next-new-boss if your current bosses find out.

– March 13, 2013 1:19 PM
Q.

Groan

Instagram feed from Norah O'Donnell on CBS's Vatican Smoke Cam (TM), which shows a bird sitting on the chimney: "A Holy See gul on top the Sistine chimney."
A.
Roxanne Roberts :

Holy pun, Batman!

Enough already. By this time next week, we'll likely know way more than we need to about the new pope and can argue about what it means for Catholics and non. Until then, send your puns, sightings, tips and other ideas to reliablesource@washpost.com. Next week, everyone!

– March 13, 2013 1:19 PM
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