The Reliable Source Live

Nov 20, 2013

Washington Post columnists Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts were online Wednesday, November 20, at noon ET to discuss your favorite gossip, celebrity sightings and their recent columns.

Past Reliable Source chats

Hello and welcome back to the Reliable Source chat. . . Some topics on our radar this week. . .


John Edwards has started a new law firm with his daughter, Cate.


Here’s a closer look at Jay Z’s charitable foundation.


David Brooks and his wife divorce after 27 years of marriage.


The woman pictured on the health care Web site is being cyber-bullied


Rep. Kyrsten Sinema becomes the first member of Congress to compete in an Ironman triathlon, despite initially not knowing how to swim.


Also: The president and first lady dined at Restaurant Nora last week for Valerie Jarrett’s birthday. . . Oprah receives a Presidential Medal of Freedom today. . .  Mariah Carey tells us what she really thinks of working on “American Idol” with Nicki Minaj. . .  Chris Brown is out of rehab but continuing outpatient treatment. . . Jose Andres is officially a U.S. citizen. . . That Canadian actress was found guilty of stalking Alec Baldwin -- whose MSNBC talk show was just suspended. . .  How do you keep a nearly 24-year-old fundraiser thriving? Get Under Armour billionaire Kevin Plank to chair it. . .  South Dakota cattle ranchers win, and animal-rights activist Joan Jett was removed from the state’s Thanksgiving Day Parade float. . . Justin Bieber wreaks havoc, and starts a graffiti revolution in Bogota. . . Oh, and did you hear about the congressman busted for cocaine?


Looking forward to your questions.

Here's the thing - you don't just come upon some coke. Either you are hanging out with sketchy people already or you already know someone who you know is willing to sell to you - almost assuredly by previous experience.

Right? I mean, this is not the '70s -- it's not like you walk into a party and, whoa, omg, coke!

meh. that is all.

I see your "meh" and raise you an "ugh." But where are the rest of you on this?

If they name her Mulan I will refuse to love her.... Oh, who am I kidding - who could quit that face. But PLEASE, NOT MULAN!

Okay, he was caught buying cocaine, but claims to have an alcohol problem. Sounds like he's got a cocaine problem, too. Oh, and a friend problem.

For a Jay-Z fan, he definitely has 99 problems. . .

A little confused by your feed today. What does Oprah not being able to swim have to do with her receiving the Presidential honor ? Is it related to the President's sinking popularity ?

Hmmm, I think someone was speedreading and hit a bump.

What an awful choice. I like his music alright, but he's uber-skeezy.

The votes are pouring in.


And another. . .

I thought she was living/working here? And isn't she married?

She's married to a doctor and based here, but spent a lot of time in North Carolina in the past couple years. But yes, the law firm will have an office here.

So, why does MSNBC suspend Alec Baldwin, but do nothing about Martin Bashir (did you even cover Bashir's Sarah Palin attack)?

Here's the Post's story on Martin Bashir's hard-to-reprint rant.

*yawn* I am suffering from Oprah-fatigue. "she cried at '12 Years a Slave'!" "She reads!" "She talks to people!" Surely she's even sick of herself....

The trick is what's HER next chapter? Kind of feels as if she's in limbo. Billionaire limbo, that is, which isn't a bad place to live....

He's a bleah in my book. Does he have any distinguishing characteristics? Like personality?

Apparently he's very confident.

Kylie Jenner and Jaden Smith dating. I mean, young love is cute and all, but I'm afraid it will end up on some tv show or something.

Oh, do you think?

Baby Panda or Baby Tigers?

Pandas. The tigers look a little fierce, even at this young age. Both adorable.

Is 60? I guess it's not surprising he looks young (he always has), but I would expect him to have more gravitas.

Full head of hair, probably a judicious use of sunscreen -- he is well preserved. You know who else is well-preserved? Garry Trudeau. Saw him at a screening of "Alpha House" last night, and he looks more like 55 than 65.

So Oprah gets the Medal of Honor. Fine. But because of her career as a "broadcast journalist"? This is a woman who once allowed JENNY MCCARTHY as a science expert on her show. When Oprah asked her how she came to the conclusion that child vaccinations would lead to the end of the world as we know it, Jenny answered "the University of Google," to which Oprah's critical response was, "Thank god for Google!" Of all the job titles you could give her, journalist is NOT one of them.

That's what the White House release said. The fact that she was a key player in Obama's first presidential campaign, oddly, was not mentioned.

At first, I thought they were gone but it looks like she bleached them?

She has bleached them. Does it look good? Does it matter? She's very good at keeping herself in the conversation, so bravo to her. . .

We certainly have come a long way from Mel Gibson.

Well, yes. And he was cute back in the day. But then again, he's Mel Gibson, which takes the bloom off the rose.

Oh, dear. Let's get this straightened out right away. Oprah got a Presidential Medal of Freedom, which is something that any president can give away to important individuals and big campaign donors. It's not the same as the Congressional Medal of Honor, which is a military decoration and has nothing whatsoever to do with political favors.

That's correct.

he's foxy, and very "current" in the emo skinny man way. not the foxiest, but a good lookin' dude all the same.

What does the fox say?

She started her own firm here last year (I think) with one other partner. So the new firm's DC office will just be her old firm.

That's essentially the deal.

Panda obviously! Try to look away from this video, just try....

Double dare ya.

I just finished reading "Lucky Me: My Life With -- And Without -- My Mom, Shirley MacLaine" by Sachi Parker. I always thought that Shirley MacLaine was a totally wack-a-doodle beatch and this book confirms it over and over again. But WOW! There's a real kicker. From the age of 2 onwards, Sachi Parker was raised mostly by her father, Steve Parker, in Japan. According to Shirley MacLaine, she and her husband had an "open" marriage. In the book, Sachi Parker writes that her father was a con artist who conned her mother out of $60,000 PER MONTH for over two decades. He claimed that he was part of a secret government project that sent him to the Pleiades, a constellation around 425 light years away. He claimed that the government made a clone of him named Steve to keep the project secret and that having Steve live in Japan with their daughter was the best cover, and that MacLaine needed to help support her government by sending him checks (with cost-of-living adjustments!) When the adult Sachi found out, she told Shirley this was a crock, Shirley had a private investigator check out Steve, and Shirley divorced him. Sachi Parker found out in adulthood that her blood type is A+, not type O like Shirley and Steve as she always thought. That made her speculate about who her father really might be. She suggested Yves Montand or Alfred Hitchcock as possibilities. I'd like to add Frank Sinatra to the list of possibles. After all, Shirley hung out with the Rat Pack in Las Vegas one upon a time. So, maybe Ronan Farrow has a half sister in Sachi Parker! The lives of these celebrities are stranger than fiction.

Well, I don't know about you, but I'm calling BS on that business trip to the Pleiades part. . . . I have just spent too much time Google Imaging Sachi Parker and your reported rumored dads. She doesn't look a thing like Frank or Ronan, so I'm rejecting that idea. Yves Montand or Alfred Hitchcock -- sure, maybe. But I have a hard time imagining Shirley MacLaine deciding to hook up with the 1956-era Hitchcock. Anyway, thanks for the fun!

I love him. I shouldn't but I can't help it.

You want to talk about your problem? Or maybe try to explain it?

than Adam Levine. Their bro-mance is cute though.

I'm Team Blake, but they are fun to watch.

Honestly, he reads as a guy who used to be a dweeb who's just desperate to remain part of the cool crowd now that he thinks he's in it. And, that's not at all sexy.

Okay, you're now describing a lot of guys in Washington.

Who knew they were such vicious vicious beasts!

MAYHEM at the National Zoo. I think everyone's acting out because they're jealous of all the attention being paid to the baby panda.

For the first singer to make the Sexiest Man Alive, I would have thought they'd choose Justin Timberlake...or any number of other people!

I think we need to face the fact that SMA is not a pure meritocracy. It has a lot to do with who is willing to let People put them on the cover under that banner, i.e., who has a project to promote in late fall. . .

wirey like a weasel

Even weasels need love.

Seems to me that the office that gives these things out needs to do some more homework. Surely there's someone (probably thousands of someones) out there who are more deserving than Oprah - though much less poor and able to make contributions.

In a similar vein, here's Marc Fisher's story from a couple months ago about the politics of White House's arts and humanities medals.

Can you hold for a sec while I see who's on the other line? Thanks.

Sigh. We'll be here waiting for you.

I can't think of anything funny to write about that Melissa Bachman who shot that beautiful lion. Why do people do these things ? And by the way, did you ever hear of this crazy woman before this ?

Week after week, you folks always make me Google. And it usually leads me to a Daily Mail story. But here's the New York Daily  News version.

Idris Elba. That is all.

I'm waiting for the story from FOX news that says the zebra and gazelle had been on the site prior to losing it....

I can't make jokes -- broke my heart that the little gazelle was so freaked he broke his neck and died.

I think Oprah has done some very good things, particularly in making reading good books "cool." She had a lot to do with elevating the national book club phenomenon, etc., and regardless of anything, I think that anyone who encourages (adn GETS) people to read on that scale deserves some kind of recognition.

Oprah gets all sorts of recognition, much well deserved. The question is whether she deserves the Medal of Freedom, but you could ask that about a lot of the recipients.

Liked that he was married to a liberal, made his standing as a "reasonable" conservative all the more believable. But that's not a good reason for them to stay married, is it? ;)

Clearly not.

It would occur to me that if an event that wants to curb domestic violence might be sending the wrong message by segregating the sexes and then sending around sexy scantily glad women to service the men.

Well, it's Knock Out Abuse that champions anti-domestic violence causes, and you can't blame them for the segregation-- they got their start because the men from that social circle were off at Fight Night. But yes, there's a lot that's weird about the "hostess" scene at Fight Night. And perhaps a less than civilizing influence: I saw a number of guys coming from Fight Night darting to grab taxis ahead of an obviously pregnant lady who was waiting for one. . .

I'd have chosen Craig Ferguson, or Tom Bergeron, or even Jimmy Fallon, because WITTY is the new sexy.

Witty has always been sexy. Nothing new about that.

What is the fascination with Alex Baldwin ? He must have a really great agent or something because this dirtbag has outlived his fifteen minutes of fame by about three hours.

Here's our meditation on this topic from the last time he got in trouble, lo these not-many months ago:

Alec Baldwin: Why the star is barely scarred by his repeat bad behavior

Is most definitely the SMA in my world! And he's not a bad actor. I could watch the scene from "The Wire" where he is running the drug dealing thugs with Robert's Rules of Order every day.

Sigh, yes, those scenes touched my heart. He is a very fine actor. Also great in "Takers," which is my favorite ludicrous heist movie of the past few years.

Has Hugh Jackman ever been chosen People's SMA? He's tall, has great looks, can act, can sing like an angel.

I had never heard of Melissa Bachman before the "controversy" about her posting photos of herself with animals that she has shot started. But all her kills were legal. Most of the countries where she has been, including South Africa, have animal management programs in place, which allow limited hunting of animals in order to keep them from encroaching on villages and farms, where they end up in conflict with farmers and ranchers. People just can't stick their heads in the sand and not know that some animals are legally hunted in order to control their populations.

Thanks for weighing in. I haven't followed closely.

Engaged! Can we get Josh Schwartz to write an O.C./Gossip Girl crossover episode/reunion show for the wedding?

"A source confirms to US Weekly," so take that for what it's worth.

He's a good looking guy but he's almost a little bit too man whorish for me to find super sexy. It's kinda like the same argument men make for not finding Miley Cyrus or Rihanna sexy (even though they're really hot).

I wouldn't put him in the same category as Miley or Rihanna, but none of them have anything approaching nuance, which I always find attractive.

He has a girlfriend??? Who does that???

it's been months since you got to reference that! Yay!

Oh, have I mentioned "Takers" before? I do recommend it. It's the story of some handsome men wearing suits and shooting people. Some other stuff happens too, I think. You'd like it.

The lion that crazy lady killed is obviously a great male and when great alpha male lions are killed it has serious repercussions for the entire pride as lesser males often kill all of the cubs of the previous alpha male so please let's not pull the wool over anyone's eyes here.

Thanks for weighing in.

Because, love him or hate him, the man has serious talent - See "The Cooler," "Glengarry Glen Ross" or "30 Rock" and judge for your self.


Apparently, there is just something about a man with a gun.

Actually, there's not. Really. Not.

One of the few men alive who is sexier with clothes ON.

Try telling HIM that.

Walt's last surviving child passed away at 79. Would have been fun to see her at the premiere of Saving Mr. Banks since Walt produced Mary Poppins for her.

Missed that. I didn't actually know Disney had kids. Here's her obituary.

...I'm so glad that she was able to get out of the country this month. I can't even imagine how painful every November must be for her.

This year especially. You can't turn on the TV this week without seeing some aspect of her father's death. 

I am fine with this choice. I even see the "ugh," and the skeeziness, but I just can't help it. WANT.

Well, okay then.

There are a lot of ridiculous social events in DC, but this is the most dreadful. We went when we first moved here because my husband's new boss had a table. We had no idea what we were getting into. I am used to people trying to at least not get sloppy drunk at "society events" instead of making it their mission. And, the conversation revolved almost exclusively around how glamorous they thought the event was and how lucky they were to be there. No discussions of literature and politics there. And, on my husbands side, he was pretty sure his "hostess" was a sex worker. Now, I know sex workers are people to, but really? The next couple of years his boss asked and we were "out of town". Thank god he switched jobs...

Actually, if you read the story we did a few years ago, a lot of the hostesses -- young, young women (I remember one with braces on her teeth) are there for the cocktail-serving tips and are appalled when they get propositioned. So there's a layer of creepiness. I went once and couldn't deal with the smoke. Rox is a regular, though!

I'm a little shocked you expected literature or politics at the event.

Jim Caveziel - Person of Interest - he is hotter than hot - in the cool George Clooney way. Levine - blech!

He was sort of a Star of Tomorrow, wasn't he? I know he's continued to work, but he didn't quite break out as big as expected.

Are you chatting next week???

Yep. We're on.

Well, you can't keep the ladies of Archibalds waiting...

Clearly. I forgive them.

But BAchman kills animals for pleasure rather than sustinance. no excuses

Look, I don't get hunting for pleasure, and I probably never will. I will say I know people who do, and I'm not going to make sweeping judgments about them -- but we disagree on this.

Who do you think is responsible for the iguanas on Mars coverup ? And if there are iguanas on Mars what do you suppose they eat ?

Is he a jerk in real life or is that just the persona he's chosen to put forth?

My sense is that he's both manifestly charming in real life AND a hot-head jerk in real life.

Yes, real estate prices and parking problems would have been more predictable.

Actually, mostly I heard conversations about making money.

THIS:  For those of us who were old enough to understand the implications of JFK's assassination at the time, Herblock's work captured it so profoundly.

Thanks for sharing.

We're a long ways away from Mel Gibson, but we're even further away from JFK Jr. It'd be nice to see another non-Hollywood type get it one year. (And let me just say: I can't believe I just voiced an opinion on People's Sexiest Man Alive choices.)

It's good to stretch -- don't want to be too sanctimonious.

When does Roz start on the gingerbread creations?

Funny you should ask -- I was baking cookies this morning. But I skipped the gingerbread competition this year for the sake of sanity --not enough hours to be found, especially this fall.

Gravitas? Bwahahaha!

Exactly. It will NEVER happen.

You know who's sexy? Jason Sudeikis!

Olivia Wilde certainly thinks so. She made ME blush talking about their sex life.

Oprah definitely deserves the Medal of Freedom Award. You can say all you want about her but the fact still remains she is still one of the biggest humanitarians in the world. She may be overexposed but at least she uses her celebrity for good (unlike celebrities like Kim Kardashian).

She's Mother Teresa compared to the Kardashians. Which says less about Oprah than the Kardashians.

I have barely recognized the SMA in years. I am not a fan of Mel Gibson's - he's a bigoted, substance-abusing, philandering, girlfriend beater. That said, he was the hottest thing around in the 80s. By far. Who can forget his relationship with Sigourney Weaver in The Year of Living Dangerously? Gallipoli? Tequila Sunrise? Lethal Weapon? At least back in those days, people had heard of him.

"The Year of Living Dangerously" is a fine movie that holds up well, and yes, he was a sight to behold then.

So where is this Gwyneth Paltrow Vanity Fair expose? And how ridiculous was her "gift guide?"

I couldn't even click on that, because I have a hard time taking her seriously. But yes, I'm waiting for the VF piece just for the guilty, guilty pleasure of reading it --but it probably won't be as bad as the hype and I'll be let down, no matter how much she protests.

What was the final tally of pro vs. son on the Levine selection?

I haven't had enough coffee to count, but I think the cons take this chat. Weasels are only cute playing in water.

Eat what they catch. They'd consider it unsportsman like to kill something and waste it.

That I kind of understand.

The Cheney household.

No, because there's no way they'll be under the same roof this year.

Then why not Angelina Jolie, or the Gateses?

I've got to think the Gates got it long ago. Not sure about Brangelina.

Anderson Cooper? Neil Patrick Harris? Alan Cumming (as Eli Gold)?

You think People is ready for that? I'm guessing not.

wait... a pop culture thing is awarded based almost entirely on oversaturation in the media and you're saying you haven't heard of these people recently? Adam Levine, the lead singer of a band that is on the radio all the time and judge on a show that is on at least two days a week? Channing Tatum last year? who was in like three different movies at the time? I don't think it's that the choices are out of touch, but that you are.

In Amy's defense, I'll say that now -- more than ever -- there's so many stars shooting in so many places that it's possible to have a vague notion of someone who other people worship. (To wit: I don't watch the 'Voice," so I know who the judges are but that's about it --- except to say that Blake would be a fun night on the town.) In the earlier days of SMA, there was a more concentrated pop star universe.

Is People really want to push a few buttons.

Dead, you know.

I don't know, I kinda love it. Its more than just a Disney movie - she's a strong female character from a time where those just didn't really exist....

I'm fine with it. At least I can pronounce it.

Mr. and Mrs. Smith was on last night and day-um, those two had some serious on-screen chemistry. And weren't they supposed to break up about seven years and six kids ago?

Those crazy kids made it work. Go figure.

Don't buy the People SMA issue this year.


It's easy when you have a gazillion dollars. A big humanitarian is someone who has dedicated all of his/her life and resources to helping others in need, without the backing of a large organized religious institution.

Well, there is that.

Does it have to be an actor? I can think of some hawt TV newsmen. How about NBC's weekend anchor, Lester Holt?

Lester's pretty cute, but too old, I think.

I voted for Mulan, because that name is most accessible for kids, who are (or should be) the target audience for learning more about endangered species like giant pandas.

Another vote!

Is that a NEW photo heading up your column ? Pretty pretty is all I can say.

Old --they just cropped out Amy. (Picture me with a sad face.) But thanks for the thumbs up.

it wasn't amy, it was a chatter! I know Amy knows who these people are!

Ah. Sorry, Amy.

Wouldn't Disney sue?

Would they? That would be epic.

Yes, sexy. Especially since he seems like such a nice guy.

Another vote.

I definitely am. It's hard keeping up on this stuff coming over the wireless. Or the Victrola. I forget which.

If you stopped twerking you could study up on your pop stars du jour.

Why is someone not a humanitarian if they have devoted their life and resources to help other and have the backing of a religious institution? I don't see how religion changes the humanitariant aspect.

I think the chatter is saying it's easier to be humanitarian if you have resources to do good works.

This week I' staying with the chat until the very end even if it costs me my job...

We're there! Are you?

Chatters -- lingered longer than I should have, but it was -- as always --fun. Send you tips and sightings to And start defrosting that turkey. 


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