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Transcript: Valerie Bertinelli, Author, “Enough Already: Learning to Love the Way I Am Today”

MR. EDGERS: Hey, folks. This is Geoff Edgers, national arts reporter here from the National Arts Bureau. And we are lucky today to have Valerie Bertinelli, who we first met as America’s sweetheart on “One Day at a Time,” and she won a Golden Globe for that. And more recently we’ve seen her on The Food Network, “Valerie’s Home Cooking” and “Kids Baking Championship.” She is also--I don’t know if you know this--the mother of a guy named Wolfgang Van Halen. We’ll talk about him, too. And today she’s here because she has written her latest book, “Enough Already,” which I speedread because I want to be prepared, but I’m going to slow read as soon as this is over. So we’re so lucky. The lovely, talented Valerie Bertinelli. How are you?

MS. BERTINELLI: Hi, Geoff. It’s so nice to see you. Last time we spoke, it was all about Wolfie. I love it.

MR. EDGERS: I know last time you Facetimed my son at the--at the Wolfie Van Halen concert, the Mammoth concert, and he--we couldn’t hear each other but he was like, wow, they Facetimed me.

So, look. I just want to thank you for being here. And this is not--"Enough Already" is not a political book. People might think that at The Washington Post. But it is a political book.

MS. BERTINELLI: There are a little bit of politics in it, though. I talk a little bit of politics. Not too much, though, you know?

MR. EDGERS: But it’s a kind of--I would say it’s kind of emotional politics that many of us play with ourselves and with others, and it’s really fascinating how deeply you get into this. Now I’m going to open up by telling you that when we talk about weight loss--which is an epidemic--I don’t know what you’d call it in our country--I think of two things publicly done. One is Oprah with the cart, pulling out her--you know, supposedly what she’d lost.

MS. BERTINELLI: Yeah.

MR. EDGERS: And I think of you on the cover of People magazine at the age of 49 in a bikini. But you tell a fascinating story in this book about what it took to get there and what it meant. Could you tell me a little bit about that?

MS. BERTINELLI: Sure. There’s a little bit of pride in it because I like to pride myself on when there’s a job to do, I’m going to do it, and I'm going to do it to the best of my ability. I'm going to get my task done. And there's a little bit of shame involved, because--for multiple reasons.

Looking back now, it's--I was part of a diet culture that didn't celebrate women, no matter what size. It was about, getting down to the smallest size you can possibly get to. And if you're not there, then you're a failure. And I don't believe that to be true any longer. And because it was so damn difficult to do, I--that's all I lived--I lived. I worked out morning and afternoon and night, sometimes three a days, sometimes two a days. I barely ate anything. I was on a very restrictive diet. And diets do work, when you stay on them. But the moment you go off them and you go back to living your life, the weight starts to come back on, and you feel like a fail--I can only speak for myself. I felt like a failure. I felt like I had let a bunch of people down. And the shame really overwhelmed me to a point where I really needed to start looking into myself and figure out what that was about and why weight--weight gain, weight loss, all of it just--the weight loss never made me happy. I'm on the cover of a magazine in a green bikini, and it really was all I dreamt about, like being able to get back in a bikini--not being on a cover of a magazine. But it didn't bring me the joy that I was searching for. So that's what my search is for now.

And I find that it's--joy has to be intentional. And it just--it doesn't come to you. You go to it, and you find it. Even in the darkest days, which I've had quite a few of in the last few years--like a lot of us have. COVID has really knocked the crap out of us.

MR. EDGERS: I mean, it's--just to go back quickly to the people thing, I mean, it's fascinating the way you break it down. You--the deal is to lose 30 pounds in eight months. You take it off in three. And then you--there's a negotiation for 10 more. It's so counter to what we should do health wise, physically, and psychologically, right?

MS. BERTINELLI: Right. It's so--I mean, I lost the weight. But what I didn't take care of is my mental health and my emotional health. And until anybody does that, any bad habit you have, that is--bad habit--any habit you have, like that was what I had in my toolbox. To soothe emotions that I didn't want to feel, I ate food because that was the original thing that made me feel loved from a very young age. So, for a long time there, I then started to look at food as the enemy, and it's not. Food is there to nourish your body, to keep it moving and keep it breathing and keep all of your organs running. And I didn't look at it that way. I looked at it like it was the enemy if it makes me gain weight. There's certain foods I can't have. There's certain foods I'm allowed to have. And it's just--it's--at this age, it's just--it's not the way I want to lead my life any longer. It's not--it's not joyful. It's not fun.

But let me also say that that doesn't mean--just because I don't get on the scale any longer, it doesn't--it doesn't mean that I'm not going to take care of myself. I still want to be able to climb the stairs until I'm in my 80s so I can get up to my bedroom. I am going to eat more fruits and vegetables because I know that's better for me. I'm going to drink less alcohol because I don't feel as good when I do drink it the next day and eat less sugar because the same thing. I don't feel as good when I--when I eat sugar.

MR. EDGERS: Yeah, I think--I mean dieting is not necessarily healthy, and not dieting doesn't mean you're suddenly sitting on the couch with a bag of Cheetos watching "King of the Hill" reruns.

MS. BERTINELLI: Exactly, exactly.

MR. EDGERS: I don’t know why people--

MS. BERTINELLI: Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

MR. EDGERS: No, I think that’s good, like, Thursday, right? So there’s a point, though--you really write about it beautifully--where you're going on the Today Show, 2019. And the idea is, it's going to be New Year’s, and we know--we know what happens then. Is it 2019? I've lost complete track of time, you know?

MS. BERTINELLI: I think it's 2020, 2020. It was right before COVID hit, I believe.

MR. EDGERS: Sorry. You’re going on--

MS. BERTINELLI: I’m sorry. You know what? The last three years have just kind of like faded into one big month. So, I don't--I can't be sure either. I have to look back at my calendar.

MR. EDGERS: Let’s define it as before COVID but after 2018, how about that?

MS. BERTINELLI: Okay, yeah. I’ll do that.

MR. EDGERS: So you’re going on there for New Year’s, and the idea is you're supposed to be going on to talk about how you're going to lose 10 pounds. So, we like to think that people when they go on TV, they have a plan, they have a structure, they abide by it, even if they're not feeling it. Tell us what happens to you.

MS. BERTINELLI: I got around to New Year's like we all do, searching for that resolution that I was going to make. And I was talking to the Today Show producers about what we could do. And of course, we all want to start the new year nice and healthy. And I thought, I can't--I can't do it anymore. I can't keep trying to lose the same 10, 20, 30 pounds over and over and over again. I need to get off of this treadmill. I need to get off of this craziness. I need to change the script. I mean, what's the definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting the same--expecting a different result? And it's not happening?

So, I said what if I tried to just be happy, just like be truly happy, in my soul happy for the first time in my life. I have happy moments. I have joyful moments. And I choose happy. It's one of those things that I believe we do have a choice about, but those days are getting more and more challenging to choose happy. So, I thought what if we try to be intentional about joy? What if we tried to find joy? How can I help people take this on my--on a journey with me? And the producers were up for it, thankfully.

MR. EDGERS: And so you sit--you got on there. And what did you tell them? The goal was no longer to lose 10 pounds, right?

MS. BERTINELLI: Right, right. The goal--well, I had an interview, and the goal was to talk about, you know, how you find happy and how you choose happy, and I found myself sobbing in this interview because the pain just came straight to the forefront. After the interview was over, I found myself with a very emotional and vulnerable--vulnerability hangover, I think is what Brené Brown likes to call them. And she's right. And I found that with that door opening where I was being--I mean, pretty much I have been an open book for most of my life anyway. But when I started to let people see the vulnerability and not the happy, I'm fine girl all the time, which is what, you know, every time--so how are you doing? I'm fine. I'm fine. And I wasn't a lot of the time. Sometimes I am. I found that it opened a door for me, and it--and it let me try to find who I am authentically. And I think that that word maybe gets overused, "authentic." But it's a good word, because who are we? We don't know. We cover ourselves up with Instagram and social media. We cover--we pretend we're having this beautiful life. There's, you know, all these beautiful filters to make us look better all the time. But who are we authentically? And I'm still on that journey to find it. I'm getting closer to it.

I like to say that I'm not one of those kind of people that the light switch goes on and I know how to make a change. I'm like a dimmer girl. Like the dimmer slowly starts to open up. And even after I finished writing the book, I realized I know why I think I'm unlovable when I'm fat. And I go back, and I remember the way my father treated my mother when she would gain weight. And that sank in as a young child like, oh, you're unlovable when you gain weight. And then I had an elementary school teacher point at my belly and say you're going to want to keep an eye on that. I hadn't even really had any idea about my body before that. It was just what got me from one place to the other. And all of a sudden, I had to be aware of my body. And that was super uncomfortable at such a young age. I'm still mad at that guy for doing it. And I'm mad at my father now, too, for treating my mom so badly when she would gain weight, because that's all she had in her toolbox when she wasn't feeling--and she had a really challenging life. So, I'm finding things are slowly opening up to me the more that I open up.

MR. EDGERS: I mean, we talked about your son quite a bit and your late husband, Eddie Van Halen, Edward, Ed. And I feel like you could--I mean, I don't know if you've considered practicing as a shrink, but you really have spent your life trying to understand the mistakes we make in the past, how those transferred to others, and then how we can try to correct them, because on the outside we look at you and we look at Eddie and we look at Wolf, and we say, boy, if we could only be so talented. And on the inside the three of you are saying I'm a fraud; they're going to find me out for God's sake, right?

MS. BERTINELLI: Right. Oh, that's such a horrible--yeah, imposter syndrome. That's a tough one in our family. I look at Wolfie and Ed, and I'm like how can you have imposter syndrome. Like you guys--it's like--it's amazing how it comes through to you. But we all feel it. And it doesn't matter how talented you are, because there's so many things that happen in your childhood that shape who you are when you don't even realize you're being shaped.

And it makes me think back about, you know, the mothering that I did with Wolfie. Which I certainly wasn't perfect because I was still struggling with--I'm not going to make excuses. I wasn't a perfect mother. I did the best that I could. My mother wasn't perfect. She did the best she could. But we try to improve any time we know we've made a mistake, and we try to get better after that. That's where the learning and the growth comes from. And that's--I feel like that's what I'm here for. I'm here to learn and to share it when I figure it out.

MR. EDGERS: Valerie, I just want to let you know, I don't know--I'm sure I didn't do it as well as you, but I felt like you were giving me an instruction for this talk. I've made the crab and spinach dip, right here. I think you told me to do that on page 7, am I right?

MS. BERTINELLI: Yes, I did. I did.

MR. EDGERS: It's still warm.

MS. BERTINELLI: Oh, good.

MR. EDGERS: It’s very good. I don't know if I should eat on camera. I don't know. I don't do that normally.

MS. BERTINELLI: Why not? I have to eat on camera on all the time.

MR. EDGERS: [Unclear] supporter. Dear God that’s good.

MS. BERTINELLI: You better drink something now. You're not making my crab look really good, Geoff.

MR. EDGERS: It’s got a little pepper in it, you know?

MS. BERTINELLI: Mm-hm.

MR. EDGERS: So let me ask you.

MS. BERTINELLI: Here, want my water?

MR. EDGERS: Can you tell us--I’d like your water. Wait, I’m going to get some right here.

MS. BERTINELLI: Somebody get him some water.

MR. EDGERS: This is not the Today Show. There's no somebody here. It's just me and my bubbler. Oh, that’s so good. I can't wait to have more of it later. So, tell me something. You told us that on page 7 we should make this, and you set up a really lovely scene. And I think food, family, psychology, it's all something you weave throughout this book. But tell us about the spinach and crab dip.

MS. BERTINELLI: Well, I like to rehearse what I'm going to do before I do a live demo on a show. And then when there's leftovers, I like take it back and make it for whoever happens to be around. And I knew was going over to Wolfie’s house. So, I brought it over there, and I fixed it up. And as I'm fixing it up, he says, oh, Dad called. He's gonna be over. I’m like, oh, great, I haven't seen him in a while. So, it just became this impromptu love session between the three of us. And we took pictures that night. And Ed was so relaxed, and he was still healthy enough to where he could drive around in a car. And it was just a really lovely, connection-filled evening. And I think, again, that all starts food.

MR. EDGERS: But he loved it, right?

MS. BERTINELLI: He loved the dip.

MR. EDGERS: Yeah.

MS. BERTINELLI: And it starts with food. I went over there because I wanted to make Wolfie food. And then Ed said, oh, what's this, and he literally got two elbows and was just like this digging into it. He loved it so much. And it's very rare that Ed really enjoys food, so it made me very, very, very happy.

What's the matter, Batman? This guy keeps screaming?

MR. EDGERS: Which cat is that?

MS. BERTINELLI: This is Batman, and he keeps screaming at me, so, yeah.

MR. EDGERS: Batman. Are the cats that your parents had, are they still around?

MS. BERTINELLI: They are. Bubba and Beau are still here. And those are actually Wolfie’s favorite kitties. He comes over here all--he was just here last night, hanging out with Bubba and Beau.

MR. EDGERS: I want to ask you about your late husband. I don't know how to say that. It's heartbreaking because I know how much it hurt you and hurts your son. And it's just heartbreaking. I mean, there's no way to go around it. But, you know, in this book, you write very, very openly about how much you loved him, and how that love continued. Also, the idea that both of you were remarried, but I feel like near the end there was a real understanding that, you know, your true love was Ed and his true love was Valerie. Would you--would you two have remarried or been together again or--I mean, he had cleaned up completely. He was a sweet, super talented guy, and you two had fathered this beautiful, beautiful boy. So, explain that relationship a little to me, because we're used to divorces, especially celebrity divorces. They're like, grrr, alimony--you know, like it's really unpleasant.

MS. BERTINELLI: Well, I mean, he was angry at me for a few years when I first left. He was very angry at me. And I think a lot of people saw that in the 2004 tour. But, oh, god, I just--I don't know how else to say it except I felt like the love we had for each other was deeper than just marital love or sexual love or I just--I loved him deeply through my soul and I felt that same thing from him, especially after our conversation in George's car, I talk about and I write about in the book. And it seemed like he spent that whole last year really wanting to connect. And I didn't realize it at the time that this might have been our last year together. So, I write a lot in the book about regretting not going over there more, because I mean, the last couple years of his life, he was alone in that house, and I wish I had gone over more. Every time he had texted me, I wish that I had just dropped everything and gone over. So, I guess what--the reason I write that in the book is for anybody else that may hear it, and if you're having doubts or if you're feeling like, oh, maybe I shouldn't overstep my bounds, maybe I shouldn't--you know, they just texted me, but maybe I shouldn't go over, do it. You're never going to regret having told somebody that you love them. There are going to be regrets about if you didn't. So, I must say, by the end of his life where we were able to say that to each other--I mean, we always said it to each other, but there was something deeper to it before he passed.

MR. EDGERS: I really apprec--you know, I thought when I'm reading this, how bold it is for you to talk so openly about your relationships, talk about your second marriage dissolving.

MS. BERTINELLI: Is it?

MR. EDGERS: And then I realized you’re like--you're taking it back--well, people just are private sometimes and they don't want to talk about things that are uncomfortable, maybe, right? I mean, that's--I'm used to that.

MS. BERTINELLI: Yeah, yeah.

MR. EDGERS: And I think you took it back in many ways from like, you know--not to insult TMZ--but you took it back from the gossip people and you made it your own and you framed it and explained it in a way that it was really just two people.

MS. BERTINELLI: Yeah, and I had given up on--in fact, I'm very, very careful not to read any of the troll comments, the gossip comments right now, because the book is so personal. I wrote it for me first, for Wolfie second, for Ed. And I wrote it so that the people--because I'm very clear in the beginning of the book that I may say I and me a lot, but I want you to take those out and replace them with yourself, because these stories may--they may be a little bit different. But I'm telling you, you've had the same feelings. You've gone through the same feelings that I've gone through, and maybe this will make you or help you feel not so alone, or help you get through a feeling that you're uncomfortable feeling. It's not as scary to go through it. But I can't worry about what the trolls and what the gossip columns say because I was grief shamed when Ed first passed, because how dare I write something beautiful about him. He was married. What they didn't know was that they were also separated, and she wasn't living there. That doesn't matter. Even if she had still been living there, we're allowed to love each other because we have a son together, and we're allowed to be kind to one another. And I still respect Janie, and I respect my husband, Tom. That has nothing to do with the love that Ed and I had for each other. So--and people can’t understand that.

MR. EDGERS: Your son, by the way, he was--your son, by the way, he does not like to avoid trolls, and has a glorious success rate at destroying them online.

MS. BERTINELLI: He’s so good at it. Yes, he’s so good.

MR. EDGERS: I remember someone said something particularly offensive. I don't remember the exact words, but they basically were like, you know, criticizing the way you were mourning as if that was their--you know, as a stranger they were allowed to do that. And he just clapped them back. Why is it that he's so comfortable with that and you are so uncomfortable with it? Because it--there are terrible people out there on the internet, you know? That's what I've heard.

MS. BERTINELLI: Oh, yeah.

MR. EDGERS: And why does it still bother you?

MS. BERTINELLI: This goes way, way, way back to where my dad was the happy guy. Everybody liked him at work, and he just wanted everybody to like them. You know, you must know everybody's name. You must do this, and you make sure everybody likes you. Well, I come to find out through all of these years that you can't make everybody like you. They're coming to you with and they're viewing you with their own ghosts and whatever their experiences in life are, and something about you might just quirk them off because you remind them of somebody that they didn't like in their own life. So, I can't be worried about that. I can't be worried about people that want to grief shame me because they think I'm married, and Ed's married, and how dare we love each other. I'm sorry that you don't have that love in your life, that you never felt that strongly about someone. I have compassion for them that they haven't experienced that so they need to lash out at me.

Wolfie, I think he's just so good at it because they had been giving him a hard time since the very first tour back when he was 16-years-old and they--people were horrible to him. And he's just like, fuck it. You know? You guys can say whatever you want. I can say whatever I want. The thing about Wolfie, though, is that he will go after those trolls because they've gone after him. He never--he never goes after people unless they attack first. But he also is very, very clear about being kind to the people that appreciate his work, that go to his shows, that that reach out in kind ways. He's very thankful and very grateful for that. So, it's not that he's just this, you know, angry guy hitting back at people online. He also is very grateful and thankful to the people that don't hit him.

MR. EDGERS: Yeah, no, your son--it's a testament to the parenting. I know as a parent you just hope your kid grows up comfortable and balanced and talented. And you know, it's not always easy for him, I know. But he is such a sweetheart, isn't he?

MS. BERTINELLI: Yeah.

MR. EDGERS: And he’s so--the guy plays every instrument on his album. Look, we have some viewer questions.

MS. BERTINELLI: I mean, come on!

MR. EDGERS: Yeah. We have some viewer questions. Can you take a couple of these? Let’s see.

MS. BERTINELLI: Absolutely, yeah.

MR. EDGERS: So we just--sadly Betty White just passed away. She was on your fantastic show "Hot in Cleveland." Steve Howard from Florida--I guess he doesn't want to be more detailed than that--but Florida asked what did Betty White teach you?

MS. BERTINELLI: That's a lovely question, because Betty White was the perfect teacher. Besides just all of the timing, and her impeccable timing, her work ethic and everything that she did workwise, as a human being, as the way she just oozed kindness and gratitude, it taught me a lot about always looking at the bright side, because there's always a bright side. It may be very, very dim at times, but you can find it when you look for it. And I am so grateful to her for showing me that, because we can get wrapped up in our doom scrolling of our life and forget all of the blessings that we have in our life. And I choose for the rest of my life to focus on the blessings.

MR. EDGERS: That's lovely. So, another question we have here, more viewers, Carrie Williams from Louisiana, the great state. How have your feelings about being a celebrity changed over the years?

MS. BERTINELLI: Oh, another really good question. Changed over the years. You know what, I think I've been doing this so long, I don't know what it would be like to not be doing it in the public eye. But I also have kept my life as normal as possible. I still go to the grocery store. I still do the dishes. I still clean the litter box. I still have a regular normal life. But every so often, someone will recognize me, and they'll say something nice to me. So that's good, as well. But I try to keep my life as normal as possible. And I don't even try anymore. Just my life is normal. I'm just normal, whatever normal means.

MR. EDGERS: I imagine from, you know, when I was 13 and 12 years old, and they had those Circus magazines with you and Eddie in them, in the early 80s, it was very different. You must have actually had to face a lot of paparazzi stuff and craziness, and you both were a little bit nutty at times, right?

MS. BERTINELLI: Oh, sure. But we also never went out.

MR. EDGERS: Never went out?

MS. BERTINELLI: We didn’t--no, Ed and I--no, we did our drugs at home. We didn't go out to clubs. We didn't--Ed hated clubs because they were so loud. So, we maybe went to one or two in our whole, you know, time together. We stayed at home. We played Uno. We played Mario, whatever the new Mario game was, the 8-bit game way back when. Yeah, that's what we did. We didn't--we didn't go out a lot, so there wasn't a lot of paparazzi. But we were always shocked when someone did take our pictures out and about because like how did you know we were here? Because we were out so rarely.

MR. EDGERS: Excellent advice for the kids, by the way: Do your drugs at home and play Uno.

MS. BERTINELLI: Yeah. And don’t drive. Don’t drive when you’re drunk or--

MR. EDGERS: We’ve got another question here. We've sort of talked about this, but I want to ask this question because it’s a good one, which is Karen--it's either Boubel or Boo-ble [phonetic] from Minnesota asks, what qualities do you try to emphasize to your son. Let's show his record for a second. This is--this is the Mammoth record, right? Boy, I love this record. I put it in plastic, I love it so much.

MS. BERTINELLI: Me, too. Yeah.

MR. EDGERS: You know, so tell me about the qualities you try to emphasize to your son. He's a grown man now.

MS. BERTINELLI: This would be a better question for--I know. He’s 30. He’ll be 31 soon.

MR. EDGERS: You know, maybe a better way to put it is, as when your son is on tour with Van Halen at the age of 16 playing bass for them, and we'd all be terrified of what's going to happen, what do you tell Wolfie? What do you say to protect him?

MS. BERTINELLI: Behave. I have a tutor out there and a bodyguard and all that stuff, and you better -- but he’d just wanted to go back to his room and play a video game. He--I don't know how much to let go anymore, because now that he's his own thing, you know, it used to be when he was little I’d talk about him all the time. But now it's just like I--you know, he's got his own thing. So, I don't want to intrude on that. But he used to get mad at me all the time.

MR. EDGERS: It’s not me. It’s Karen Boubel that asked that. I would never try to pry.

MS. BERTINELLI: Oh, right, okay.

MR. EDGERS: Karen.

MS. BERTINELLI: So I--whenever I would--he would like, be having a bad day and say something like, well, Wolfie, you know, sometimes you have to look at what are they going through? Maybe it wasn't made for you. Maybe the intention wasn't--he's like Mom, stopping being all Gandhi on me. I just, I need to get this off my chest. And so I learned to like maybe not talk so much. He might have a different answer. So, I don't know. He gets annoyed because I can have a Pollyanna attitude sometimes. And he's like, Mom, people aren't as nice as you think they are. And I’m like, oh, maybe you're right, sometimes. But I like to look at the good side.

MR. EDGERS: Yeah, well, you know, it's so nice after all these years in the spotlight--1975 or something, right?--that we're still here. You're young.

MS. BERTINELLI: Ish, ish.

MR. EDGERS: And you have all the future ahead of us, and you are not at all jaded. And you know, I'd say this book is what--it's like a pandemic book in a way. It's like a philosophy book in many ways.

MS. BERTINELLI: Thank you.

MR. EDGERS: But it also has this beautiful narrative about your family.

MS. BERTINELLI: And recipes.

MR. EDGERS: And you know, all I can hope for is that I can talk to you again. I’m sorry?

MS. BERTINELLI: I hope so too, Geoff. No, and recipes. I wanted to make sure that I brought food back to the love I originally started with, because for a long time--as we talked, as a long time I made food the enemy, and it's not. So, I made sure to mix in some recipes in there that meant a lot to me in the moments that I was talking about. So, I just--I want people to know that there's recipes in there. And it does have some hopefully go-to things to help you get through some bad times that I've been able to work on myself and have worked for me.

MR. EDGERS: Well, I've tried one of the recipes, and it's fantastic. And I'm going to consume the rest of it after we get off. But there's pizza. There's--I mean, there's--my wife is Italian. So, I know what you're talking about, you know what I mean? So, I really, really appreciate this book. And look, we've really appreciated the time with you. And look, good luck on the remaining tour. Say hi to the cats and say hi to your family. And maybe we'll see you in person sometime, you know?

MS. BERTINELLI: I hope so. Yeah, that'd be lovely. Thank you. And thanks for taking such great care of my son, by the way. That was an amazing piece that you wrote on Wolfie, and I want to thank you for that.

MR. EDGERS: So, folks, thank you so much--oh, thank you. You know what? It wasn't hard. Just add water. That kid--kid, he’s like, whatever, 31--

MS. BERTINELLI: He's still a kid to me, too, so.

MR. EDGERS: Yeah, he's so--he's so talented and so wonderful that I just--I was honored to write that piece.

MS. BERTINELLI: Thank you.

MR. EDGERS: So, everybody, thank you so much for being here today. Water, crab and spinach dip, Valerie Bertinelli. And you know, be sure to check out Washington Post Live. And we have so much programming for you. And thanks.

[End recorded session]

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