5-11-11 - Janette's Return, Fenton Bailey and Author Caissie St. Onge

In case you missed it....

Rosie and the staff started today's broadcast welcoming Janette back from her trip to the Ukraine for Medical Missions for Children!  Janette said the experience was extraordinary.  She was with her charity for 10 days in Ukraine and they fixed mostly burns on very young children.  And the doctors from her group have had a lot of success training doctors in the Ukraine on the treatment of burns.  Janette said she wasn't prepared for how emotionally shocking it was going to be to see the mothers and the children in pain.  Janette said the people in Ukraine work so much yet still have so very little.  She thanked Rosie and Sirius for the time off so she could go.  And Janette mentioned the auction her friend Petra is doing for MMFC in order to raise money for the cause.  You can learn more about Janette's trip to Ukraine by visiting her website HERE.  Janette spoke Ukrainian on air and said "I am an American woman trying to help and I love Ukraine."  Rosie thought she should try to learn to say that in every language for every time she has an opinion about a political topic she could say that first.  Rosie asked Janette if she heard that we killed OBL while she was overseas.  Janette didn't really hear about it because she was very much entrenched in what she was doing.   She also said she did a lot of drinking and toasting!  Mostly Janette said the trip was tremendously fun and rewarding. 

Janette asked Rosie what she missed while she was gone and Rosie joked and said nothing much, just Glee, American Idol and DWTS (clearly avoiding mentioning the OBL debate that's been looming over the radio show this past week).  

Rosie said she finished the show yesterday, went to therapy, picked her kids up from school and immediately went to Parker's baseball game.  Parker has been on the baseball team but hasn't played one time.  It's a Varsity team and most of the other freshman don't play either.  They've only won one game in the last 3 years but they won yesterday!   Rosie even posted a video of them winning on her Twitter!    Rosie said she had an allergy attack of epic proportion and had to borrow tissues from the perfect-looking Greenwich moms who were also at the game after reassuring them that Parker's team never wins!  Then they won!

She got home from the game and it was immediately time for Glee which she watched with Vivi and Blake.  Then they watched Becoming Chaz together!  BTW, if you missed Becoming Chaz you can catch it again on OWN this Friday at 8(7c)!

After the documentary aired she hosted a Documentary Club Discussion for OWN where she had Chaz and his girlfriend Jen on as guests to discuss their experience.  Rosie said the discussion was held at a temporary venue and was not filmed on the set of where her new talk show will be filmed.  Apparently she was getting some feedback that people didn't like the set.  Rosie said this wasn't what her show is going to be it was just a special thing she did for OWN.  Rosie said her show Rosie will air most likely in the afternoon.

Rosie said Chaz is an impressive brave man.  Deirdre, who loved  the documentary said it made her like and respect Chaz even more when she was done watching it.  She said the way Chaz explained how it felt for him to be transgender was a huge awakening for her.  Rosie watched the documentary with her kids Blake and Vivi and she said their comments were very interesting to hear.  For one thing, they only recognized Cher from the movie Burlesque which made Rosie feel old. 

Rosie then took several callers about Becoming Chaz.   Almost every caller started their conversation with Rosie by telling her how much they are going to miss her on the radio, by the way.  The first caller saw Cher in the doc and remembered watching Sonny & Cher as a kid.  She wondered about Chaz's girlfriend and how a lesbian adjusts to now being with a man.  She said the Documentary Series Rosie hosted helped better explain this than the documentary did because it allowed Jen to speak about her own sexuality more.  Rosie said she has a friend who went from male to female and then became a lesbian who has explained to Rosie that gender identity is different from sexuality.  Rosie admitted that she didn't even get it entirely until she saw this documentary.  Bobby loved how the documentary contrasted the very private and very public parts of Chaz's life and how he had to deal with them both during his transition. 

Rosie took a call from a listener who loved the documentary and felt guilty for participating in the types of media that exploits celebrities that they showed in the film.  The caller felt really badly for Chaz because he had to be so public about such a private issue.  Rosie said Vivi didn't like the part in the film either when they showed the media really exploiting Chaz's story.  And Rosie complimented Chaz on how he knew the media would pick up on it so he hired someone to help him work through it.  Rosie said sometimes the media tries to say provoking things to celebrities in order to make them react a certain way so that they can make the celebrity appear a certain way to fulfill the narrative they are selling.  
One of the callers Rosie spoke to was concerned about his weight.  Rosie said weight is a problem many people are working on and she wasn't sure how it manifested with respect to his gender issues.  And she said Chaz's weight is the next struggle he really wants to conquer.  Rosie was also impressed with how open Chaz was about his own battles with drug addiction. 

Rosie took a call from a listener who feels sorry for Cher because she "lost" her daughter during the transition.  Rosie didn't feel sorry for Cher however.  She said you're a mother first and the gender of your child is secondary.  Rosie said being a mother of a child that goes through major changes in any way can be difficult and as a parent it's your job to love them unconditionally.  Rosie liked how open and honest Cher was and that she didn't sugar-coat her feelings.  She said it would have been easy for Cher to just say she was fine with it but Cher chose to be very honest about how she truly felt.  Rosie was extremely proud of her for that.  Rosie also liked how protective and loving Chaz was when he spoke about his mom like when he said he didn't want to ask his mom for the money for the operation because he knew she was going to have trouble with the idea of it and didn't want to burden her. 

Rosie said she knew Chaz when he was Chastity.  She said she used to come to her show when she worked for HRC and encourage her to come out.  Rosie said Chaz as a man, is more alive and open than he ever was when he was a woman.  Bobby agreed and said Chaz used to be sad, shy and quiet.  He said when you see him now it makes perfect sense why he used to seem like that. 

Rosie then introduced Fenton Bailey from World of Wonder Productions that produced the documentary Becoming Chaz.  Fenton said he was very happy the documentary has touched a chord with so many people.  He said he's done work about this topic before but it was different this time because the subject in this case was someone we've all grown up with and known since she was a little girl.  Fenton said in a way, we've all got a bit of the opposite sex inside of us.  Fenton said when they started filming they knew there would be a physical transformation but they didn't anticipate the depth of the psychological changes that would occur. 

Rosie asked if he was nervous when they had to interview Cher and he admitted he was terrified!  He said they requested and interview with her and got a response back the next day!  They had to rush to Vegas to do the interview the very next night.  He said it was probably better they didn't have much time to prepare because he didn't have as much time to worry about what he was going to ask her.  Fenton said he was so impressed with Cher's honesty and directness.  Rosie loved how Cher was not "Cher the superstar" but "Cher the mother" in the film.  Fenton said he was so worried about offending her he actually went blank for a moment during the interview.  He thought when she talked about how much she loved being a woman and if she woke up the next day in a different body she wouldn't be able to handle it, that was the moment she made the issue so relatable for everyone.

Rosie asked what Fenton is working on next and he said they're working on a film for HBO and Sheila Nevins on Don't Ask Don't Tell and it's repeal.  Rosie said she can't wait to see it!  

Fenton asked Rosie about moving back to television and Rosie said she's excited for the transition and to do it at Harpo.  Fenton said Harpo is the "Rolls Royce of production" and Rosie agreed.  Rosie said Harpo studios is a beautiful place and the culture Oprah has set up there is wonderful.  She said she's excited about the opportunity to work there. 

Rosie thanked Fenton for calling in and encouraged her listeners to look into World of Wonder and the work that they've done.  

Rosie filled Janette in on the Jillian Michaels interview she missed.  Rosie admitted Jillian used to scare her but said in person she's fantastic and absolutely amazing.  Rosie loves how committed Jillian is to helping people understand  they have the power within them to change.  The interview made both Jeannie and Rosie cry.  Jillian also made Rosie feel like she could get to the bottom of the issue of why she is carrying all her extra weight.  It brought up a lot of feelings for Rosie about why she isn't taking care of herself and why she doesn't feel worthy and she said she felt very sad afterwards.   Rosie said she knows when she starts singing a musical number in her head or starts counting silently to herself that she's about to lose it during an interview and that happened to her when she was interviewing Jillian.   Rosie said on Monday she played basketball with her kids and she walked more yesterday in an attempt to exercise more.  Janette said it only takes 2-3 weeks to form a habit and encouraged Rosie to stick with it!  Rosie said it was a shame Janette wasn't there for the interview because she would have enjoyed what Jillian had to say about processed food.  Tune in Friday to hear the second half of the interview!  

Rosie said she felt old watching the Documentary Special she did for OWN.  On the car ride back to the hotel Tracy asked her who she was trying to be during the interview?  If she was trying to be the funny Rosie or the serious Rosie?  Rosie didn't understand what Tracy meant until she watched the special last night.  She said she has different qualities in her voice that she cannot really explain but she can hear.  She said she seemed half in performance mode and half talking in her regular voice.  And she said the producers wanted her to take phone calls and Skype but she didn't really think it worked. She said during one of the Skype phone calls she sounded like she was talking like it was 1972 to someone overseas!  She said she was "Nana" for a minute.  Overall, Rosie said she didn't think they needed the phone calls or the Skype with an audience of people with something to say.

Rosie took a call from a listener (who said she will miss her on the radio, etc) who was in the audience at the Documentary Club special!  She told Rosie that SHE is her Oprah.  The caller told Rosie that she knew exactly when to put on her performance voice and when to change back into conversation voice and that's Rosie's gift!  She was moved by the love story of Becoming Chaz.  Rosie thanked the caller for her phone call and told her she'd get her information so she could get her tickets to the show when it premieres on OWN!  . 

Rosie took a call from a listener who really liked the special following the documentary presentation last night.  She loved how Rosie had a conversation with Chaz as opposed to simply interviewing him.  Rosie said she never wants her guests to feel "out there alone" and that she doesn't understand.  The caller said she loves how Rosie is like us all and a "real person" in interviews. 

Rosie said when she started her show in 1996 there was a young woman in her 20s who worked as her assistant for a time.  She later was moved to the research department on her show.  Her name is Caissie St. Onge and she went on to be a very successful blogger, producer and writer who wrote a very successful Young Adult novel entitled Jane Jones: Worst. Vampire. Ever.  Janette said Caissie is one of the smartest people she ever met!  She said Caissie was the one person on staff who if they ever turned in something last minute for the show she knew she could hand it in without proof-reading it first.

Rosie then welcomed Caissie onto the program!  Caissie is also a producer on Watch What Happens: Live.  She said it's a really fun job and a great team but she's the oldest person there and sometimes has to work very late.  She joked that sometimes she doesn't know what day it is, she's so tired.  Caissie is the mom of two boys ages 12 and 9, she has a successful blog and she's now written a book Jane Jones: Worst. Vampire. Ever.  Rosie said she's read some of the reviews and they're great!

Caissie said she wasn't really into the vampire genre but she loves pop culture.  She said she was goofing around with some friends, making fun of vampires with them a little, and one of her friends told her her ideas would make a great book! 

Rosie said she loves Yong Adult literature and asked Caissie what qualifies a book as YA?  Caissie said if the book is appropriate for a younger person to read it makes it YA.  She said she kept her own kids in mind when she wrote Jane Jones but said her book is recommended for kids ages 12 and up.  Rosie told Caissie she wished great things for her writing future and she looks forward to reading more of her work!

Rosie then asked Caisse about a crisis she and her family went through the day she got her book deal.  Caissie said her husband called her and told her to come home because their son hurt himself.  Turns out he suffers from ADD and tried to hang himself. She came home to find her husband had taken him to the hospital.  Caissie said her son was very articulate but also very forgetful and wasn't ever able to follow a movie or find his shoes.  He also has non-verbal learning disability which means he's good verbally but has a hard time being able to interpret social cues or people's intent. 

Her husband found her son because their youngest son came to him because he was alarmed that his brother told him "goodbye."  Her husband ended up walking in on him attempting to hang himself.  Caissie said her son was struggling academically and not doing well with his teacher at the time but of course they had no idea he was thinking about hurting himself.  Today Caissie said with the help of EMDR and cognitive behavioral therapy he's really turned a corner.  He's also started volunteering and doing a lot of other things to give his life meaning. 

Rosie thanked Caissie for coming in and for sharing the story of her son and wished her luck on her writing career!  You can visit Caissie's blog at CaissiesThing.tumblr.com.

Rosie asked the staff if they heard about the new Triple Decker Oreo Cookie coming out?  Rosie joked that it's horrible news!  Janette called it poison and told Rosie to try to forget it even exists. 

Rosie and Bobby briefly discussed yesterday's Oprah where she had people on who have all lost 100 pounds or more.  They both talked about how shocking the show was!  Rosie said the girl who purchased the Rosie Radio visit for charity was in the studio yesterday and had recently gained a large amount of weight because of her mom being sick.  Rosie offered to take a picture with her but she declined because she didn't want a picture of herself at that weight.  And the woman, who was from Chicago, made an awesome gift for her highlighting all the places that will be of interest to Rosie when she comes to Chicago!   Rosie said it was really, really thoughtful!  Deirdre said it was a picture posted of her on Facebook that made her realize she needed to lose weight.  Rosie said she sees it in herself when she's gained weight but never sees it when she's lost it.  And then when people comment about how she's lost weight it freaks her out because she never noticed it! 

Rosie said a guy was saying on Ed Schultz that she was an OBL lover and that he deserved a trial. Rosie said she  DOES NOT think that and asked people to stop saying that.  Rosie then read some of the things people are saying to her on her Twitter about OBL.  Rosie said there's a narrative out there that says she's un-American and that people will choose to spin that story no matter what she says.  Janette said she doesn't believe OBL is dead at all!  She said she believed he died a long time ago and they were waiting to release the news until they had a political motivation to do so.  Rosie doesn't agree with that statement and told people to write JANETTE BARBER if they have a problem with what she said. 

Rosie closed the show.

Check out this old school vid from 1992 that Liz found today.

and that's what you missed - kw
15 shows left...


  1. Thanks for the link to the auctions, Kelly. The pink ink is wonderful! (Except the countdown, which is so sad. Not that it is your fault. Just sad.)


  2. The countdown for Rosie Radio and the countdown for Oprah are really making me sentimental. There has never been a time in my memory that I couldn't see or hear either Rosie or Oprah on a weekday. Twitter is fun, but the keystroke limitations do not allow for the same kind of depth we've enjoyed on www.rosie.com, and I miss the Rosie's blog writing style.

    On a happier note, can I tell you how much I love Janette (a no-holds-barred woman)!!! I always enjoy hearing her opinion. After Benazir Bhutto's interview with David Frost on Al Jazeera in Fall of '07, I think quite a few people wondered if OBL had already passed away. I wish that Frost had asked Mrs. Bhutto to clarify her comments that day. (Sadly, she was gone within months and we'll never know what she meant.)

    OWN in Canada hasn't shown Becoming Chaz yet, but I'm really looking forward to it. Now that his voice is changing, he sounds so much like his Dad. It's amazing. Wishing only happiness for Chaz.

    Alison (Alderella)

  3. thanks for you blog, since I don't get rosie radio... Cassies interview hit me because my own daughter (who at the time was undiagnosed with ADD) also tried to kill herself. She got diagnosed, got help and is in a terrific place 3 years later but I still get a horrible panic reaction when I think back to that day...

  4. Hi,
    Annoyed Canada gets everything 3-4 days later on OWN. I signed up especially so I can get Rosie. Is it going to be late in Canada?

  5. I'm in Ontario. Becoming Chaz is scheduled for Sunday night here.

  6. I wanted to call yesterday but I was in a rural area and could not guarantee a dropped call. I was wondering what you think of past lives, and the idea that because of issues or unresolved conflicts from another lifetime, may be the reason we make certain choices in this lifetime. Or that maybe Chaz, feels the need to connect with the lifetime when she was a man. I do believe that we have all experienced life as a man and a woman in different life times. So my idea is that, certain longings for those lifetimes, or certain unresolved life karma could cause you to make certain decisions in this lifetime. Just an idea and it would certainly be better as a discussion than a post. :)