The Reliable Source Live

Jun 05, 2013

Washington Post columnists Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts were online Wednesday, June 5, at noon ET to discuss your favorite gossip, celebrity sightings and their recent columns.

Past Reliable Source chats

Good morning, and welcome back to the weekly Reliable Source live chat. Much to discuss for the start of June:


It may not be the biggest home in the area or the most expensive home — but it’s RGIII’s starter home, and here’s what we know about it.


John McCain’s son gets married — and she’s military, too.


Former Miss Americas plot political careers.


Also: Is there hope for child stars? Sen. Jeff Flake decamps to a deserted island, and Rep. George Miller maintains long-term roommates at the real “Alpha House.” Ziller Hagel gets a break in court. Channing Tatum‘s new baby. Ann Romney’s new cookbook. Lou Reed’s new liver.


And R.I.P. Jean Stapleton, Deacon Jones, and Frank Lautenberg — the last Frank in the Senate.


Looking forward to your questions.

Any chance that Russell Simmons is in town? I saw a man who looked suspiciously like him yesterday in front on Rasika Penn Quarter.

Why, yes, in fact -- I am informed that he was there for lunch yesterday with five guests.

At whose house was the fundraiser held where Michelle O didn't like the heckler?

It was at the Kalorama home of Karen Dixon and Nan Schaffer, longtime Democratic activists/fundraisers. More on the heckling and post-heckling.

How do you think the new subscription costs for online content at the Post will affect your chat? This is the often the highlight of my week, and I'd hate to see it go down the drain.

Not sure. I mean, at the end of the day, if you're a home delivery subscriber, you'll get it all for free. And if you opt instead to subscribe to the Web version, it will be $9.99 a month for the full smorgasbord -- not like you'd be getting charged individually for clicking on a chat.

Is this a new trend? I seem to recall a representative who switched from pageants to politics, but perhaps I am thinking of a Lifetime movie.

It's a trend that's really taking off in the past couple of years. Let us know if we're overlooking any examples. Miss America alums aim for political office

There are already rumors that Lou Reed's new liver is finding Lou Reed incredibly difficult to work with and might need need to move on to new projects....

on the Congressional baseball game, played at Nats stadium recently? I want photos of those guys in their uniforms, stats, quotes....

It hasn't happened yet. Coming up on June 13.

Is this the McCain son who was engaged to the much-maligned advice columnist on that lame Bravo show?

"Books, cats and a warm bath." I'm taking a page from Roxanne's Guide To Retirement Life!

Nice to have a roof with that, of course, which is why I'm not retired!

Some of the chats attract a large out-of-area crowd like Dear Prudence. I don't see how they could possibly do that chat if its not free. So, we may end up paying/getting locked out, while others chats stay free. Which is unfair!

$9.99 a month! Come on!

There's always Al Franken.

True. But last names and variants don't count in the Frank count.

Don't forget, ask, "Are you _____________?" "What are you doing here?" and send all that information to!

True. I am sympathetic, though. The setup at some of those Rasika tables is a little daunting. Hard to break in.

I was fascinated with you item on the long line of Senators named "Frank." So what is now the most longest-serving name in the Senate? Any idea?

Can we put you to work on that? Thanks.

Why was the Ask Tom chat cancelled today? I plan my whole week around it.

Oh, you know Tom. Better things to do, I'm sure.

Is this why his wife went into seclusion? So she wouldn't be around to be questioned about her husband's proclivities and cancer?

Jeesh: How embarrassing is that? It's one thing if they -- as couple -- decided to come out and address the complicated causes of throat cancer, including the risks and benefits of oral sex. But the way it played out was such a disaster. Yikes. No one who read that is going to look at CZJ the same.

Do you know who you left off: the kid who played Chunk on the Goonies. Ended up being student body president at Cal and he would do the Truffle Shuffle during games!

Aw, glad to hear. He should have spoken up last week, along with the others.

Roxanne, love you on Wait, Wait. You are by far the best liar, as well as the quickest on the lightening round. But Post is charging to see this, so bye.

Thanks and I understand, mom.

I loved Fast and Furious 6. But worried and impatient - how long until Fast 7 comes out?

You are in luck. Until now, the F&F movies have come out roughly every two or three years. But they've already scheduled "F&FVII" to open July 2014, reflecting an increase in demand. Ride or die.

I know you guys didn't write it, but loved the story in the WaPost magazine about so-called DC hostesses. I was disappointed the author didn't do a chat on it because I had so many more questions. Like -- how much do these gals get paid, and what is their day job to pay for all those fancy shoes -- as I assume a 600-clicks-a-day web site doesn't pay for them.

I know!!! So many questions. And very worthwhile story, if you haven't checked it out yet:

Party bloggers battle to run D.C.’s top social Web site

If you had to roommate with a Member, who would you choose?

Almost any member would be a good roommate because they are never home. Late nights, in their district on weekends. Women are probably cleaner, so that's one factor. And someone who can cook couldn't hurt.

I happened to be watching METV last night, when then "Odd Couple" episode turned out to be the one on which Deacon Jones guest-starred. I assume they preempted whichever episode had been scheduled previously in order to air this one in Jones' memory. Right? (Wow, I miss Lisa de Moraes already!).

You are probably giving the schedulers too much credit -- I'm guessing it was just a poignant coincidence. Been meaning to look up that "Odd Couple" clip on YouTube, if it's there -- but in the meantime, enjoy Deacon Jones's late '70s Miller Lite ad.

I'm not trying to be mean here, but that is either the least flattering picture of Cindy McCain ever, or she has really let herself go.

There was some discussion along those lines here in the office. Could be that the dress, hair and camera angle was super unfortunate. I think Cindy has gained some weight, but since we're not addressing her husband's appearance, I say it's none of my business.

Yeah, but I'm not going to pay $119.88/year. I will miss you terribly. How much longer will I be able to read you?

Sorry we're not able to make it worth your while; we got bills to pay too, here. Meanwhile, you know as much as I do about how this works, but here's a story on the paywall.

I'm not entirely sure that I'm going to be able (and my other family members are going to be willing) to squeeze another $9.99 (plus tax!) out of the family budget for a Post subscription. All these little amounts add up, unfortunately. HOWEVER, if you provide a link to the chat on your Twitter feed or FB page, it would count as a free re-direct. Just a suggestion . . . .

Likewise, we're all squeezed these days. And apparently someone around here decided that we should all start getting paid for our time and work. Thanks for the heads up about the redirects; like I said, I haven't had a chance to read up on this stuff.

I am amazed she was only in her 40s when on that show. I would have assumed she was always 65. I guess that is a tribute to her acting, or that that show just seems from another time.

I know, I thought the same thing. R.I.P. Jean Stapleton.

What a doofus. He has kids who can read this stuff. Even if he truly, truly believes that's how he contracted throat cancer, no need to share. The fact that he's backpedaling this just makes him look pathetic.

Oh, you know, sometimes people say the darnedest things when they're talking to overseas journalists. It's like they think it doesn't count or something.

I suppose that's better than "hiking the Appalachian trail"

Smart to take your kids along so no one raises any questions about what else you might be up to.

But what about the House? Any WWII vets there? Korean War? Just wondering.

The House still has two WWII veterans: John D. Dingell (D-Mich.) and Ralph M. Hall (R-Tex.)

How many cats does one have to be considered a "crazy cat lady?" I say, more than there are people in the house. Someone else I know says more than 2. Any ideas?

I say it depends on where you live (city vs. rural), whether the cats are indoor or out, the cleaniness of said home, and whether it is possible to have adult relationships. I've always been a two cat (siblings from the same litter) person, but could imagine more if I thought I could be a responsible owner and not let them take over my life. As it is, two pawing my face for breakfast at 6 am  seems like enough. 

Well played, Michael Douglas. I assume he was looking for a way for us to stop talking about that really embarrassing performance in the Liberace movie, and discussing cancer as related to oral sex was the way to do it.

I'm still shaking my head.

I saw that Glamour named Posh Spice "Woman of the Decade"? Which one? The 1990s? Sounds like they have dubious criteria for this award. Besides, it's only 2013. Bizarre.

Ridiculous, isn't it? She should be Person of the Decade. This was Glamour UK, btw, so maybe that makes more sense.

Yay, Peter Sagal announced last weekend that Carl Kassell's coming back to "Wait! Wait!" I've been worried about his health, since he was off for a month. Was it more than just a cold?

I don't know the details and I don't care. I love Carl and just glad he's back at the mic.

Oh, there'll be some people who will.

Really? You don't that's not going to pop into their head?

is RS so sort this our for me, the Michael Douglas thing, was his cancer specifically caused by HPV, or was he saying that HPV can cause cancer.

The Guardian says that he was saying the former in their interview; Douglas's rep claims that he was merely saying the latter. And now the Guardian is pulling out the audio recordings!

This is why I enjoy your column so much -- these stories about things I would have never thought up, but I found to be fascinating. Well done.

Ha. Glad to inform.

People. It's only $9.99 per month for what is a very good newspaper and, on its best days, a great newspaper (Liz Sly's work on Syria right now). In any format, I call it a great deal!

Thanks for the endorsement.

for a month, that's cheap. Think folks of how much you spend on coffee drinks in a week, movies, bagels etc. One less latte a week will more than cover it.

A way to look at it. It's too bad the newspaper industry has spent the past 18 years allowing consumers to adapt to the notion that everything can be free. It's going to be as hard to change that mentality as it is to survive that mentality.

Don't forget his "Brady Bunch" appearance.

Okay, for that, I had to drop everything to do a YouTube search: Deacon Jones on the Brady Bunch

I was amazed reading the story about the new online fee and how it would still be free for those who got home delivery of the hard copy of the paper. I mean, who knew there were people who read the physical copy of the paper? Amazing.

Those are the good people.

[Braces for outrage]

I think that chatter meant that there are those ( I know 2 personally) who have always thought about sexual acts when looking at Catherine Zeta Jones.

Well, I understand that. She's always been hot. 

I'm not sure that this is on topic for a RS chat, but why aren't ad revenues sufficient for on-line newspapers (not yours in particular, but others, too)? I certainly see ads all over the place on the on-line edition, maybe even more than the print version. Broadcast news survives on ad revenues, and print newspapers did the same, too, as my understanding is that subscriptions are only a fraction of ad revenues. Why are things different these days? Thanks.

Hard to explain, but they just aren't. By some calculation I've seen, online ads are worth one-tenth of what print ads are. And yes, you're correct, it was advertising more so than subscription revenue that paid the bills.

I have a daily and Sunday subscription, so I'll still see you here every week.

Thanks! Glad to hear.

Nothing about the team I love? Not even that one of the wives may be pregnant? Or any new girl friends for our bachelors--Tyler 1, Tyler 2, Stephen 2, Drew, Danny, Anthony, etc (Bryce has one, a soccer player at BYU).

Hey, these guys are busy this time of year.

my rule has always been you can't have more pets than hands, so one person, two pets. Just don't want to deal with all the jostling for attention otherwise, but I can see folks from big families might disagree.

Laps per pet. My cats were thrilled when my son was home from school because he didn't move for hours while they jockeyed for space on his lap and chest, pushed aside his computer, and gave him dirty looks when he moved. It was kind of adorable, but then I'm a cat person.

But the really annoying McCain so-called columnist who writes stories about herself -- she is still single?

Meghan McCain is unattached at the moment, so far as I know. Would Meghan tell the world if she had someone in her life, or would she keep it a secret? I don't know.

Yes, I get the real actual paper. Sunday only. It's a tradition from my childhood that I do not want to lose. I like the tactile element, and it's bigger than the largest computer screen in my home. Oh, and the coupons are worth the cost!

Makes sense to me.

Fpr those of us in other parts of the country, the dead-tree issue isn't even an option.

Well, thank God you found our Web site then. And anyway, an online subscription, should you decide you're interested, is a lot cheaper than home delivery.

His diagnosis doesn't necessarily mean CZJ gave him cooties. He could have contracted the virus years before he met her. Besides, HPV runs rampant in the human population, and there are lots of different strands.


Why would the White House be so stupid as to omit the exchange between Michelle Obama and the heckler from the official transcript of the LGBT fundraiser? It was obvious that the incident would be covered by the press via the pool reporter (or by leaks from attendees), and Mrs. Obama said or did nothing that would embarrass her or her hosts. So why would the White House pretend that it never happened? It just makes them look like they are inept, stupid, and just arrogant. If anything, Mrs. Obama came off looking confident and independent. Why suppress that image? It just doesn't make any sense.

It was a strange choice; I don't know the logic.

I realize you probably didn't mean to sound harsh, but it does, Roxanne. Punctuation could have save this: "I don't know the details. I don't care - I love Carl and am just glad he's back at the mic."

Eats shoots and leaves! Everyone know I adore Carl.

Think of it as nearly $120/year, and it's more like real money. (And since I work from home, the answer to your next question is, no, I don't buy expensive coffees a few times a month. Or EVER.)

What's your save-journalism business model suggestion?

I think they did it on purpose, as they had a screenshot just before the start of the show with Jones' photo and the birth--death dates. Nice touch, showing the ep.

Well, there you go, then.

Wow, that is a lot. I, like I am sure millions of other read 10 to 15 out of town newspaper web sites a month. If they all charged $9.99 I would be shelling out as much as $150 a month! I think the MAX I would be willing to pay is $20 a year for the Post. So I guess this is so long.


Not that I want to dwell on this, but bear in mind that he was at least in his 40s when they got together. Besides his previous marriage, he undoubtedly had other relationships in his lifetime. This doesn't necessarily tell us anything about CZJ (and even if it did, having something that over half of all people get in their lifetime is not exactly newsworthy). I think he did a public service by talking about something that few people are even aware of.

All that is true and that's now he should have presented the disclosure.

$10 is approximately my daily food budget. Come on!

So, fast one day a month, and you'll be able to fit us in your budget! : )

I subscribe to the daily paper. I like the tactile feel of it, the coupons on weekends, and (it's about to get corny) I want the Post to survive. We will lose something as a nation when independent journalism dies, as I fear it will.


Does this mean that if I go to Google News to search for this chat and it lists the link, then I can still connect to your chat for free?

Honestly, I haven't a clue.

Was that she clearly knew that Archie was all talk, hiding a very scared interior. Plus, calling her a "dingbat" called into question the type of woman who would marry a man like him. Like the plaque my dad had in his study, "Never criticize your wife's judgement. Look whom she married."

She was a multi-layered character, beautifully portrayed.

If only Barney had been chosen to fill John Kerry's seat...

Again, we're talking about Frank as a first name.

But former Senator Bob Dole and WW II vet is still alive, and recently appeared in a TV interview.

There are a few formers -- but Lautenberg was the last serving senator.

No, thanks.

I'm with you. How did this suddenly turn into Papillomagate?

I'm not seeing any time going back at least to 1950 when there wasn't at least one "John" in the Senate.

Good work. But I don't see that changing -- "John" hasn't dropped off the lists the way "Frank" has.

He's continuing his awkward phase, wearing a leather shirt and sunglasses to the Miami Heat game and having his bodyguard stand behind him, blocking others view of the game. Sheesh.

And he's kept you talking about him. That darn kid.

NO ONE WILL GO SEE IT WITH ME! My boyfriend doesn't want to (though he liked Fast Five when I made him watch it), other friends think I'm nuts. How do I convince people they are missing out?

Just go see it by yourself in a crowded weekend-night theater. I warn you, "Fast 6" isn't nearly as good as "Fast 5." There was something truly magical about that one.

I posted that a few minutes ago - I didn't mean it to sound snarky, I just wanted to point out that it's not an insignificant amount of money. Thanks for posting the link - if the 20 free articles/month includes chats, then I'm not going anywhere.


I dropped my home delivery (daily) a few months ago when the op eds turned too conservative for me and a plethora of conservative (and in their own world) columnists appeared. But, I guess $9.99 a month for the live chats isn't too bad - unless WaPo continues to drop the number of chats being offered. Do you know if WaPo plans to continue to drop chats?

I don't know anything about the larger chat scene.

Not sure what Douglas' statement is so awful or embarrassing. I mean, he had a long career before he married, I am assuming he dated plenty. HPV-caused cervical cancer doesn't usually develop until many years after one is infected with HPV. Most people who have an HPV infection never know it, unless they develop cancer some time down the road. From what I read, HPV infections in the throat can lead to throat cancer and Douglas has shared some valuable public health info with the world.

Well, it's sure got everyone talking, whether he meant it to or not.

A comment from the weekend NBC 4 sportscaster about Beiber's get-up was, "Even Dan Hellie's jacket thought it was a bad look."


Yes, I realize that this subject has taken over the chat, and I hate to add to the kerfuffle, but here's my issue -- I don't think it's going to help the Post survive. I think the ad revenue lost by driving away all the eyeballs will not be offset by the subscription revenue. So, in effect, my objection is that it creates a direct out of pocket expense that, at best, continues the system on life support until the experiment fails.

Thanks for your thoughts. Again, this is a decision made by people way above my paygrade -- people so far up the corporate structure I don't know them -- and who I assume are moving slowly after much studying of how this has worked for other publications. As for ad revenue, there is some school of thought that dedicated and engaged readers are a more valuable click than those who are casually clicking through. I can't speak to any of this.

I subscribe to the physical copy for 2 reasons: 1) I happen to think the Post is a great paper and has outstanding columnists and I want to support them (and i know that online ads don't come close to doing that) and 2) I read the paper while I'm doing my hair (and the spouse takes it on the metro)... So, it has it's uses. But, mostly it's the former. You want quality, you need to pay for it.


Were there children in his first marriage?

He adopted his first wife's two sons and they had a daughter together.

If we'd clicked on "try this one weird tip to lose belly fat" more often, we'd be paywall-free.

YES! And, perhaps, a little thinner, who knows.

Because I'm only caught up through Fast & Furious 3. Hope we have bad weather this weekend so I can catch up on NetFlix....

You don't need to see 1-4 in order to understand 5! Seriously. Unlike "Godfather II," "Fast 5" is a work of art that stands on its own.

Are you happy he's back in the lineup? I still think Ian Desmond is way hotter.


The issue isn't that we should have to pay, it's that they're asking too much. If you're paid enough that $120 a year isn't a significant bite, more power to you. It looks to me like they're trying to limit their readership to the relatively wealthy, or to young folks willing to pay $8 for a cocktail. Any articles about the widening gap between rich and not rich will be pretty hypocritical from here on out.

That's always the question, isn't it? What you are willing to pay for what? Cell phones, cable TV, cars: We all make decision about the value of any given product/service to our lives. My kid decided against cable but high-speed wi-fi is  a must. So it's not the actual dollar amount as much as the perceived need and value. And each individual has to make that call.

I thought Michelle Rodriquez' character had died. How did they resurrect her?

Come on, I'm not going to ruin this with spoilers.

Unless it turns out to be bad info (I'm looking at you, Jenny McCarthy!), then I think it's a good thing! May lower some stigma and lead to additional screenings or at least discussions with health care providers -- it will in my case. I would only feel bad for CZJ if he revealed he contracted it through an extra-marital affair or something.


My mother was only 4 years older than Jean, and she looked about the same way during the All In the Family years. Modern medical care during childhood has made big difference in our appearance, I think.


Bryce's girlfriend Kayla is no longer at BYU - she transferred to Ohio State.

Oh, missed that, but yes, that appears to be the case. Well, she'll be closer now.

Justin Verlander wears the tightest pants! His thighs are AMAZING! As for a hot National, Tyler Moore (aka Tyler 2) is very handsome; so is Steve Lombardozzi! Desmond & Werth are married with kids; Moore & Lombo are not.

See, it's so easy to get you started.

When was the last time you met a "Frank" in the wild? At least one who wasn't retired or nearly retired? (A "Francis" did marry into our family, but he goes by "Spunk." Most passive man I've ever met.)

There was a Frank my age at college. And there was a Frank on a season of "The Real World" some years ago.

Not that I want to go through the hassle of whatever online payment mechanism TPTB choose for the paywall, but frankly, I think chatting with Amy & Rox once a week for an hour or so for $10 is a value at twice the price....

Oh, that's nice. But you're not paying $10 a month for us -- you're paying that for EVERYTHING.

My niece's dog. He's 5.

Good boy.

Can you please suggest to the Post that they have a chat answering questions about the paywall before it goes up? Thank you!

Well, this sort of ended up being that, unfortunately. Good idea, though.

How amazing is it that HRH Liz II is still hale and hearty after 60 years as the monarch? She looked great in the pictures from her anniversary celebration, but I didn't see too many of Prince Phillip.

He's been sick lately. He's 91, you know.

My son-in-law's name is Frank--not Francis!

Thank you -- he's been counted.

"there is some school of thought that dedicated and engaged readers are a more valuable click than those who are casually clicking through" That is probably true, but as described, the new model encourages casually clicking through while discouraging the dedicated and engaged readers who are also price-sensitive. One thing the Post never did with its ads, perhaps because they're outsourced, is respond to the problem that they slow navigation--especially the big gorgeous real estate ads that are for developments far, far exceeding my price range, which they know from my profile. If the ads were targeted to me, I'd be less likely to suppress them, less likely to block tracking, and more likely to become a valued customer of the advertiser. But instead of addressing that, they drive me away with a pay structure I can't afford.

Thanks for your thoughts. Sounds like it just wasn't meant to be. No hard feelings.

Do we get money back if we accidentally click on a George Will or Krauthemmer column?

Ha. I know this is a joke, but again -- if you're paying for monthly access, it doesn't matter how many stories or what you click on. It's an all-you-can-eat buffet! It's only an issue if you're NOT paying, in which case, yeah, sorry, that column counts against your supply of free clicks.

How many male celebrities do you know would be willing to admit that they even perform that act? He definitely gave HPV a PSA. It definitely makes you think more about HPV - I must admit I never really linked it with cancer (and no I have never had HPV).

Opening a discussion, as they say. Same as Angelina Jolie and hereditary breast cancer.

You may not like his politics, but that is one attractive family.

Yes. And the newlyweds are a very cute couple.

Can't we all just get along?

I'm sure we can.


Hey, where did Rox go?

My cousin named her baby Floyd, c. 1980. She legally swapped it with his middle name, Michael, once she realized that people were turning away from her newborn upon hearing his name, and reading an article in Parenting about how children's names influence the treatment they get from kindergarten teachers. Fortunately for Michael, our family is pretty good at putting 2 + 2 together ...

Turning away from him? God, people are awful.

yeesh. I think it will all be ok and sort itself out. change is hard.


The thing is, most folks who read newspapers online re a number of them, so nearly $120/year X 5 (for example) is $600/year, which is not insignificant in plenty of family budgets. (We don't have cable TV either, don't ever play the lottery, and still use dial-up for Internet connection)

I don't know what to tell you. We are all facing hard times. And I know the people upstairs here have made some hard decisions, RE: this paywall, in the hopes of being able to keep the company running and people employed. At the end of the day, we are a private company trying to stay afloat. We are not a public service.

There are so many Franks in my wife's family we have to use identifiers. Cousin, Big Frankie Nephew, Little Frankie Uncle, Garcia Another Uncle, In Jail Frank Cousin, Red Head Frank Granfather, Granpa Frank

Strangely, "Big Frankie Nephew" is somehow a more sinister nickname than "In Jail Frank Cousin."

If I pay for Sunday only, do I still get all the online content for free? I get the Sunday paper and rarely have time to read it, but I like to think I'm doing my little part to save the paper. Not getting the other six days is my little part to save the environment.

I have no idea. Maybe go read that story I linked to previously? And if there's no answer there, email the guy who wrote it. I'm not being flip, I just don't have a lot of intel because, well, I've been in this chat instead of reading these stories and memos.

I draw the limit at paying for People Online, though.

Oh, I'd pay for that, if it came to that.

only in her I always thought that edith and archie looked way too old to have just a 20 or so YO child. how interesting.



About time to wrap up, don't you think?

I hope that you included Francis (Frank) Underwood, D-SC. If not, you'll be hearing from Stamper (or worse, Claire).

Oh, but of course. . . .

Has Amada Bynes been spotted around the beltway wearing bad wigs or jumping on trampolines?

You'll let us know, right? The address here is, and we are all ears when it comes to any kinds of tips and story ideas. See you next week . . .

Recent Chats
  • Next: