The Reliable Source Live

Aug 13, 2014

Washington Post columnists Helena Andrews and Emily Heil were online to discuss your favorite gossip, celebrity sightings and their recent columns.

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Past Reliable Source chats

Welcome to the Chatter Dome! Despite the slow news trickle that is the month of August, gossip is still a thing. This past week we've learned where Jill Biden got the dress she wore to the Africa leaders dinner at the White House. Actor George Clooney and his fiancee are actually going to do it. And the Clintons are spending their summer in the Hamptons, but supposedly on the wrong side of the tracks. Let's dive in. 

On your Clinton vacation story, who exactly said they were "slumming" it? You never actually say, but you suggest that it was Bill or Hillary. Which, if it wasn't, is kind of purjorative and obnoxious. I still miss Amy and Roxanne.

No Bill and Hillary Clinton never said slumming and the phrase is very clearly attributed "to a new neighbor" in that sentence. Also in the Huffington Post column (which we linked to) that their new neighbor, Blake Fleetwood, wrote, "slumming it" is right there in the headline. 

how i can talk you helena

Wait what?

With Robin Williams passing, I feel I must confess that I liked the movie Popeye and in particular Robin's wonderful performance. I particularly loved the way he did that whole muttering underneath his breath thing.

Popeye came out the same year I was born. 1980.I don't remember watching it but somehow I do remember watching it. I feel that way about so many Robin Williams' films. I haven't seen 'Mrs. Doubtfire" in decades, but I still remember how that film made me feel. He was a giant. 

I hope some good will come out of this, that people who are in the depths of depression will find help. And that that blight on humanity Rush Limbaugh gets taken off the airwaves

Agreed on hoping something positive comes from Robin Williams' death. I wouldn't be surprised if his family rallied behind the issues of mental health awareness and treatment--issues he spoke about publicly. Comedian Russell Brand, who I increasingly love as a writer, had this to say: 


"When someone gets to 63 I imagined, hoped, I suppose, that maturity would grant an immunity to adolescent notions of suicide but today I read that suicide isn’t exclusively a young man’s game. Robin Williams at 63 still hadn’t come to terms with being Robin Williams."

Robin Williams was in a lot of good movies, but I think he might have appreciated the humor of taking a retrospective of some of the worst films he has done. When I think of the good stuff, I feel sad. But I get a good chuckle out of things like Like License to Wed, RV, Jack, Hook and - get ready to cringe – Jakob the Liar.

Wait is "Hook" not included in the "good stuff"? Granted my cinematic tastes weren't uber refined back then, but Hook remains one of my all time favorite movies forever and ever. "Rufio, Rufio, Rufi-ooooo." I still want to be one of the "Lost Boys."

I hadn't watched "Mrs. Doubtfire" in ages, but when we were in Portugal on vacation this spring it came on a TV station that carries English-language movies with Portuguese subtitles -- such a hoot! (And a painless language lesson).

I'm always awed when people say they learned a foreign language by watching TV and movies. How do you keep up with everything! But Mrs. Doubtfire seems like it'd translate easily. Boobs! On Fire. Pretty clear in any language. 

Had pretty bad reviews when it came out - though it did well. And it had Robin Williams in green tights.

Green tights! His legs were quite toned. He was a huge bike rider, all around NY and California. he even rode with Lance Armstrong. 

Here's what I don't get. If you can afford a seven-bedroom home in the Hamptons, what would possess you to want to rent it out, regardless of whether it's to an ex-president or not? Surely you don't need the money. I'm scratching my head over this.

That does sound strange doesn't it? I doubt the Nassers, the folks renting to the Clintons, need to their money. But why let someone stay there for free when you can get $100,000 for three weeks? I assume that's how the rich stay rich. But that's me guessing. Also I'm told there is a ton of art in the home so it might be a insurance thing. 

I think that it was very courageous of you to highlight Sally Quinn's tweet about Lauren Bacall. So let me add what you were too courteous to say: wow, way to make somebody else's death ALL ABOUT YOU!!!

I wouldn't call it courageous exactly. I mean she did tweet it out on a public account for the world (or just the world according to Twitter) to see. Also, I think when someone dies it's impossible to not make it about you just a little bit. You start remembering how that person's death affects you and all the personal moments, not simply their resume. When Robin Williams died I thought immediately about how much I loved "Aladdin" and where I was when I first saw the film and how I wished I had a Genie to make all my 12-year-old problems go away. My gut reaction was allll about me. 

A nice combination of hotness and classiness, that we unfortunately don't see too often any more. And half of one of the legendary movie romances--Bogie and Baby were a lot more interesting than Kimye.

Bogie and Betty v. Kimye! That's sort of fascinating. Just the stark differences between celebrity culture then and now. Are Kim and Kanye driving the coverage with their Tweets and Instagrams and reality shows or are we steering that crazy train by gobbling it all up? 

Why, Peter, you've become a pirate. Best line ever.

"I'll tell you what a paramecium is! That's the paramecium! It's a one-celled critter with no brain, that can't fly! Don't mess with me man, I'm a lawyer!"--Peter

It's a little creepy isn't it?

It IS creepy. And news-worthy deaths (ugh, that sounds even creepier) sometimes come as a triple set. 

I live in New York, but I'm not rich. So I just go to Florida when I want to go to the beach. But why do rich New Yorkers drive 90 miles to go to a cold beach?

I'm from California and the Pacific isn't all that heated, not like the Caribbean were the ocean water is like a warn bath. From what I've heard (because I've never been either) the Hampton is more a "scene." I doubt the Clintons will be surfing or paddle boarding. But who knows! The beach (minus the water) is still a lovely and peaceful change of scenery, plus golfing and tennis and lunching and parties at Martha Stewart's house. 


Double ouch. Triple ouch! But if you're comparing the Average Joe to Rick Blaine? Come on, deteriorated doesn't even begin to describe. 

Indeed it is, but isn't New York City the biggest scene of them all? Don't these people ever want to take a break from the "scene?" Sounds exhausting to me.

New York is definitely a scene as is DC and LA. But that doesn't stop all the same people from going to the same vacation spots to summer--Martha's Vineyard, Nantucket, Cape Cod, the Hamptons. It's like a working vacation. You're not at the office but all the folks you need to network with over golf or to host a fundraiser for you are still around. It DOES sound exhausting.

I mis-read that as "Stars Die in Paris," which made me think of Jim Morrison. Who else?

Why is this a popular search term on imdb? I knew about Josephine Baker (obvs) but not Andre the Giant.

That makes sense since he was from France. By the way, did you know that when Andre the Giant was a kid he used to get driven to school by Samuel Beckett? I am not making this up.

No I did not know that and clearly I need to bone up on my Andre the Giant knowledge. 

And that does it for this week's live chat. Things got a little maudlin but that was expected given the week's news. And we got to trade Robin Williams' memories, which is never not fun. We'll be back in a few weeks and in the meantime send all your tips and tricks to

In This Chat
Helena Andrews
Helena Andrews is the co-author of The Reliable Source. Follow her on Twitter @helena_andrews.
Emily Heil
Emily Heil is the co-author of the Reliable Source and previously helped pen the In the Loop column with Al Kamen. Follow her on Twitter @emilyaheil,
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