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Interview With Kate of 'Jon & Kate Plus 8'; Maria Shriver's Heartbreaking Battle; Sherri Shepherd of "The View"

Aired May 10, 2009 - 21:00   ET


LARRY KING, HOST: Reality TV mom Kate Gosselin -- tabloids claim her husband's had an affair. Jon Gosselin says no, but admits to bad judgment.

How's Kate coping and what does this mean for the eight amazing kids at the center of their lives?

And then, millions of Americans recognize her face, but Maria Shriver's father no longer knows who she is. California's first lady opens up about living with the impact of Alzheimer's -- the disease that strikes every 70 seconds.

Plus, "The View" co-host Sherri Shepherd on Barack and Michelle Obama, and on Sarah Palin.

SHERRI SHEPHERD, COHOST, "THE VIEW": That was the one thing.

KING: And her personal smackdown experience.

SHEPHERD: He is 6'3" 249 pounds. Need I say more?


Let's go to our first guest, Kate Gosselin.

She's in New York.

Her family's life is chronicled on the TLC reality series "Jon and Kate Plus 8." She's been with us before. It's lovely -- lovely looking, Kate. It's good to have her with us.

She's author of a terrific new book, already a best-seller, "Eight Little Faces

A Mom's Journey." There you see its cover.

What a wonderful family.

She's got this charming book out. The sextuplets turn five on Sunday -- Mother's Day. What an appropriate time.

Yet the big buzz is about the tabloid allegations about her husband, Jon.

So let's take care of that first.

What's the situation?

How are you coping?

KATE GOSSELIN: The situation is the tabloids are going crazy again. You know, it's a result of our situation -- our very public lives. We, as you know, have a reality show. Everyone wants to know everything about us. And I feel like this is a situation where, you know, you can't believe everything that you read. You know that. I know that.

And so we are dealing with it privately. We are handling it one step at a time. And I think the important thing to remember is that we love our kids to pieces. They are safe and happy and healthy. And of all times, their birthday is coming up. And I'm just thanking God for five wonderful years with eight wonderful kids. And, you know, we're just -- we're focusing on them.

KING: That's a good idea.

Now your kids, the sextuplets are turning five. The twins will be nine.

Are they aware of all this?

K. GOSSELIN: Fortunately, kids are kids. It's a situation where, yes, Kara and Mady are turning nine. They attend a very quiet, private school where, you know, people aren't paying attention to that. They're investing their time in their kids' education and activities. And, no, they are, at this point unaware. But they are very aware that we love them very much.

KING: We have a statement -- your husband issued this statement: "These allegations are false and just plain hurtful. As I adjust to the attention that comes from being in the public eye, I need to be more careful and aware of who I'm associating with and where I'm spending my time. The bottom line is I did not cheat on Kate. I'm sorry for putting my family in this awkward position, given some poor decisions and bad judgments I've made recently. I'm working through this difficult time with my family and my family is my top priority."

Do you know what he means by difficult times and bad judgment?

K. GOSSELIN: Well, this is a situation where, you have to understand, we are a couple, we are a family who didn't set out to live, you know, the celebrity lifestyle. We are living our lives like a normal family. Cameras come in and film us. And that, to the world -- to the public, makes us celebrities.

I do not like that word. I am not a celebrity...

KING: But...

K. GOSSELIN: ...I am a mom and a wife. And I feel that Jon is having difficult times realizing that, you know, you can't go to the grocery store without people whipping out their cell phones, calling everyone they know and taking pictures of you. He is dealing very poorly with it.

And I feel like these, you know, things are making him realize, oh, my gosh, I cannot go anywhere without everyone knowing...

KING: Are you...

K. GOSSELIN: ...who I am.

KING: Kate, are you now sorry you did this series, because you made the decision to become the celebrity?

K. GOSSELIN: You know, I am not sorry, because I look at life as a glass half full is my attitude. And I feel like we have learned a lot, the kids have gained a lot. We have benefited a lot. And life lessons is -- you will see in our show. And this is full of life lessons.


K. GOSSELIN: Life happens. And, you know, we all have to react to what happens to us. And I choose happiness. And I choose to survive anything.

KING: Kate's book is "Eight Little Faces

A Mom's Journey."

Kate's sextuplets have lived nearly all their lives in front of the cameras.

What's going to happen when the cameras go away?

Stay tuned.



K. GOSSELIN: A day in the life with mommy and the eight kids alone. No, I do not look glamorous. This is not a glamorous job. Check their hair. Jon might have put a pink one in their hair.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. There actually is.

K. GOSSELIN: Yes. Jon, don't ever use the pink ones for at home. They get lost.

JON GOSSELIN: I'm sorry.

K. GOSSELIN: Use the weird...



J. GOSSELIN: OK, I said I was sorry. (END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: That's quite a show -- and quite a hit show.

By the way, one other note on this question of the husband. The 23- year-old woman with whom some publications allege Jon has been involved with also denies there's been an affair and she says she and Jon are just friends.

How do the children handle cameras?

K. GOSSELIN: You know, they don't know anything different. The camera crew, to them, is a bunch of playmates. When we're not filming, they're hanging out with our crew, who love our kids very much. We handpick them as far as how they interact with the kids. And we're very fortunate to have a very wonderful production company and crew. And we work very well together.

They love them. They scream and shout when they -- when they show up.

KING: How about when they go away?

K. GOSSELIN: They hug and kiss them.

KING: What's -- what's the best thing about having this seen on television?

K. GOSSELIN: The best thing for us, to be quite honest, is the ability to be able to work from home. I realize, as my career has changed and grown, I am taken away from home more and more often. But one parent is always home with the kids. And the majority of the time, both of us are home.

And I feel that that is the best thing, because when I was, you know, pregnant with sextuplets thinking how in the world are we going to provide for these kids, how do you afford day care for eight kids and all of those thoughts, this has answered that problem.

And, furthermore -- which is very crazy to me, our show has become inspirational to people. They tell me via e-mail they turn off the TV and they're glad, you know, that they only have two kids to take care of. And if we can do with it eight, they can do it with two.

So that has been an added benefit. And I appreciate those encouraging e-mails from fans.

KING: All right. That's the pluses.

What are the minuses, Kate?

K. GOSSELIN: Well, you know, the minuses are the fact that Jon and I never get to leave work. We are always working. It's -- you know, you're finishing the e-mails, the conference calls, the calls late at night. There's always deadlines and things to turn in -- the stuff that you don't see, the behind-the-scenes of filming a show. The kids are just living their lives. They're just playing. They -- they're oblivious to all of this and the cameras following them. But it's a very, very full-time job. And it comes with a lot of public, you know, scrutiny, as is evidenced in the current media -- things that nobody enjoys.

You know, I -- I'm -- I'm dealing with it and I'm -- I'm thick skinned. But, you know, that is definitely a humongous negative.

KING: You...

K. GOSSELIN: Everybody has an opinion.

KING: You're a noble lady.

By the way, Kate's posted a sextuplet birthday message on our blog. And you can check it out and post your comments at

Why -- why did you write this book?

K. GOSSELIN: You know, Larry, I wrote it for my kids. I wrote "Multiple Blessings" for my kids. I wrote "Eight Little Faces" for my kids. I want them to know that I did not set out to have eight children. That's very obvious. But each one of them is special to me and unique. And I want them to have written down so that there is no doubts ever in the future that I love them individually and as a group. And I -- I honestly have the best eight kids that there are and I'm very grateful.

KING: What were you doing before having children?

K. GOSSELIN: I was working as a nurse, saving money so that I could get married and have children.

KING: How did this TV series come about?

K. GOSSELIN: Actually, Discovery Health, the production company, e- mailed us and -- and said we're doing things on larger families, would you be interested in doing a documentary?

Knowing that they have a very good factual reputation, we decided that we would just collect these memories on -- on DVD. It had an overwhelming response, which turned into our second hour, "Twins and Sextuplets," one year later, which became "Jon & Kate Plus 8."

KING: What did Jon...

K. GOSSELIN: Did we ever think it would have this response?


K. GOSSELIN: Absolutely not.

KING: Why do you think it does?

K. GOSSELIN: Just because we're -- we're a family that is doing what every other family is doing, just with, you know, a handful of extra kids. It's -- it's family life. And, you know, I'm not willing to hide who I am. I -- it does not bother me that the cameras capture how I am. There's a couple episodes I wish I could send through the shredder. But other than that, you know, I don't mind it.

I'm -- I'm not going to hide who I am. And I'm willing to show that to people because nobody is perfect. And you'll never hear me say I'm perfect or even close to it.

KING: Do you control the editing?

K. GOSSELIN: We do not. That's why those episodes still air.


K. GOSSELIN: No, we do not. One -- you know, once it's filmed, it's in the can and -- and it's airable. If it's stuff that is -- I don't feel is appropriate, from the kid's standpoint to show, you know, about a certain child, I will be allowed to refute it. And the network is very happy to listen to that and change things.

But as far as myself, I don't know that I've ever asked that anything be changed about me, because I don't really care about me. I'm protecting the kids.

KING: Wow!

Thank you, Kate.

K. GOSSELIN: Absolutely.

Thank you.

KING: Kate Gosselin. The book, "Eight Little Faces

A Mom's Journey.".

Two Web exclusives to tell you about.

The first is from Kate. She wrote exclusively for our blog, as we already told you,

The second, is Prince Charles and Camilla's spokesman. And he reveals key details of the prince's star-studded campaign to save the rainforest. His interview and exclusive commentary also,

We're back in 60 seconds with Maria Shriver.


KING: We're back.

We're still waiting for the press conference on the indictment of Drew Peterson. We'll bring it to you live when it happens. We welcome to LARRY KING LIVE from New York, an old dear friend, Maria Shriver; the first lady of California; best-selling author; more important than any of that, co-executive producer of The Alzheimer's Project. It's a four part documentary series. It debuts May 10th on HBO.

And her wonderful father, Sarge Shriver, suffers from that horrific disease.

Maria, before I -- before I ask you about HBO and this special, your husband, Governor Schwarzenegger, is making news, saying that maybe we should think about legalizing marijuana and taxing it as a source of revenue.

MARIA SHRIVER, FIRST LADY OF CALIFORNIA: Well, I heard you were going to ask...

KING: What do you feel?

SHRIVER: were going to ask me about that, so I wanted to check it out, since I'm not in California. And what he said was that we should study or look at what certain states have done, what other countries have done. And we should explore that topic -- bring people to the table, find out if it's detrimental to do that, if it's a good thing to do that.

But I think at no time did he make a point of saying we should do this so it can help us with the budget. What he was saying, as far as I understand it, is look it, we should do a study on whether that's a good thing or not a good thing. And we should talk to all the people involved and then make a determination, one, is that a good thing, separate from anything having to do with the budget.

KING: OK. Let's move to The Alzheimer's Project. Your father, as we mentioned, Sarge Shriver, suffers from it.

Is that what led to you motivating to do this?

SHRIVER: Well, it led me, first, to write a book for children on the subject of Alzheimer's, really, to explain to my own children what was happening with their grandfather and, in truth, to really explain it to myself.

And then I actually went around to television networks, asking them if they wanted to do a special on Alzheimer's. And nobody did. And that was about four years ago.

And then two years ago, Sheila Nevins at HBO came to me and said, you know, when you asked me about that Alzheimer's project, now is the time. The numbers are growing. The research is fascinating. And we can do a multipart platform television event on this and will you work on it?

So I was thrilled because millions and millions of people need the information that's coming through this project. Children need to understand what's going on with their grandparents. Over a quarter of a million young kids baby-sit grandparents in this country with Alzheimer's. And there's a lot of hopeful things going on in this field.

KING: We'll be right back with Maria and talk more about the long good-bye which is Alzheimer's.

Don't go away.


KING: The Alzheimer's Project debuts on HBO May 10th. It's a four- parter. Maria Shriver is co-executive producer. It's gut-wrenching to watch some of the moments that you capture.

Let's watch this one.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: See, I told you my wife, right now, is precious.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, who do you think I am?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, let's see. I don't know.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You don't know who I am?

I am your wife.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you really?



KING: We know that your father the great -- and I call him great because he is a great man, Sergeant Shriver -- doesn't recognize you.

Does he speak?

SHRIVER: Yes, he does speak. And I introduce myself to him every time I go to visit him, which I'm going to do tomorrow. And I say, "Hi, daddy. I'm Maria and I'm your daughter."

And he says somewhat like that man, "You are? Oh, my goodness, that's so great. Nice to meet you."

And that's never easy. And even if you go into the kitchen to get a glass of water, you have to come back and reintroduce yourself. But it teaches you, I think, to live in the moment, to accept the person who's sitting right in front of you and to stop wishing that something were different and that the person was who they used to be and just try to accept the person that's right there. KING: Since Nancy Reagan and Ronald Reagan, have we devoted enough effort now in this fight as a government?

SHRIVER: No, I don't think so. I testified in front of the Congress a couple weeks ago. And there was a two year study done that has very bold recommendations to this Congress and this president about more money that is needed in the research for Alzheimer's -- how to revamp the whole health care industry, because Alzheimer's single-handedly will break the health care system in this country as we know it.

Caregivers are -- need, perhaps, a tax break. There's all kinds of very different recommendations that the study makes that was chaired by former Senator Bob Kerrey and Speaker Gingrich and Sandra Day O'Connor.

And they spent a lot of time talking to people in the field and trying to figure out what kind of money is actually needed to help us find a cure.

And I should mention, Larry, that the people that are researching in this field. There are about 92 clinical trials that are underway. And we talk a lot about the science and the research. They really believe that a cure is within reach -- is in some test tube in some laboratory in this country. They don't tell you when that's going to happen, but they do believe that they are within reach of that.

KING: Is stem cell going to help?

SHRIVER: I think anything's going to help and everything is going to help. And I think the population needs to get mobilized. This is, I think, an epidemic that is going to either make or break the baby boom generation. People are getting Alzheimer's 60 years old, 65 years old, 70, 80. And, you know, it impacts the entire family -- emotionally, spiritually and definitely financially.

And I think if we come together and stress to this Congress and this president, really the brain is the new frontier -- what we can understand about the brain. We're living longer and we need to make our brain match our life span.

KING: It is the long good-bye, is it not?

SHRIVER: Well, It can be long. And you can look at it as a good-bye or you can look at it as a brand new hello every day, which is the way I choose to look at it.

KING: And that emotionally helps you, then, to look at it that way?

SHRIVER: Well, it's an emotional disease. There are no survivors of Alzheimer's. Nobody goes into remission. Nobody is at work. And so you have to, as one doctor said to me, once you've seen one case of Alzheimer's, you've seen one case of Alzheimer's.

But in the special that I did on Monday, which really talks to children, it really tries to dispel some of the shame, some of the confusion, some of the fear that associate -- that is associated with Alzheimer's.

KING: Yes.

SHRIVER: People 55 and above fear Alzheimer's more than any other single disease. And I really do believe that we can cure this if we come together and seek a cure.

KING: Yes, God willing.

We're awaiting, by the way, the press conference of Drew Peterson's indictment. We'll bring it to you live when it happens.

More with Maria Shriver when we come back.


KING: We're back with Maria Shriver.

Alzheimer's can be very tough on children, too.

Watch this moment from the documentary.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Melissa's taking a picture of you.

Isn't that wonderful?

UNIDENTIFIED CHILD: What was it that made you fall in love with her?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, she's a pretty little girl. And I didn't have any other girlfriends. And so I fell in love with her. It was on sight. I love you. You're so wonderful.

UNIDENTIFIED CHILD: I wish I could have known her as she was before, because as from what I've heard, she must have been a really amazing woman.


KING: That is so sad.


KING: How's your mother Eunice dealing with this?

SHRIVER: Well, I just wanted to say that I think that young girl is so moving and triumphant, the way she has told the story of her grandmother and the love affair that goes on between her grandparents. Larry, that's one of the things you see in Alzheimer's, these incredible love affairs and the incredible love the children have for their parents, spouses have for one another, and what they go through, the emotional roller coaster.

And if you want to see real love at work, watch this project, because it takes your breath away. KING: And your mother, Eunice, how's she doing?

SHRIVER: I think it's difficult. It's difficult for a spouse, if you're married to somebody for 50 some years, and they're effectively there and then they're effectively not there. So that has its own challenges. It's different for children. Then it's different for grandchildren.

So I think what I've learned is that everybody walks this journey in their own way --

KING: We thank Maria Shriver for being with us on a very important topic that affects so many of us.

We now welcome, to complete our week with the women of "The View," the wonderful Sherri Shepherd.

By the way, Sherri, how did you get the gig?

SHERRI SHEPHERD, "THE VIEW": The gig for "The View"?

KING: Yeah.

SHEPHERD: You know, I had been calling and knocking on the door for about three years because I just wanted to publicize my sitcom "Less Than Perfect" and they kept saying, no, no, no and then Johnny Cochrane passed away so they said if you can be here in a couple of days we'll put you on the air as a co-host and I guess they like me. I think Barbara Walters liked something about me.

KING: You were supposed to discuss Johnny Cochrane?

SHEPHERD: No, he just - he passed away so Star Jones had to fly back ...

KING: Oh, oh.

SHEPHERD: ... to Los Angeles to attend his funeral. So I took her place.

KING: How do you feel being on the "Most Influential" list?

SHEPHERD: Wow, I am very, very overwhelmed. It is a dream come true. I was two feet away from First Lady Obama. I'm still - I don't look excited on the inside but I am screaming inside.

KING: OK. You were anxious to be on this show, wanted to be a guest, wanted to promote something. Now you are part of it. What's it like?

SHEPHERD: Every day is a challenge. Every day before I come out and wave I'm so nervous. I want to throw up in my mouth. Is that bad to say?


SHEPHERD: It is so wonderful. It's a great challenge but I work with four amazing ladies who nurture me, who are there for me, they stretch me, I love it.

KING: Well, you might like to know they have all praised you all week.

SHEPHERD: They did?

KING: Yeah, they have.

SHEPHERD: I love it.

KING: What is the challenge, though? You're conversant, you're bright, you're right with things. What's the challenge?

SHEPHERD: Well, you know, Larry, I do sitcoms. People who don't know me, I would always tell them, I'm the black girl on all the white sitcoms. And politics was not my forte. I - this is my first year voting, I have to tell you, so I didn't know a lot about politics. And I don't like to debate, I don't like confrontation, and this is everything that I do every single morning. So it was a little bit of a challenge.

KING: Speaking of that, you were an undecided voter throughout most of the 2008 campaign and when Obama won you had this emotional reaction. Watch.


SHEPHERD: People of color, we've always had these limitations, limitations on us and I remember so many of my family (inaudible) when I said I want to be a comic and an actor they said, no, get a job at the post office, they don't let people like us do that. And so (inaudible) son and say no limitations.


KING: Why didn't you support him if you felt that emotional, why weren't you with him from the get-go?

SHEPHERD: You know, because I had never voted before so I was looking at all of the issues on the right and on the left, Republicans and Democrats. I wanted to - since it was my first year voting, I wanted to make sure I voted for the very best person I thought would do a good job for my country and for my child. And I felt that I voted the right way.

KING: How do you like the way he is doing so far?

SHEPHERD: I think he is doing really, really well. He has got a lot on his plate but I think that President Obama, he is a thinker, he speaks slowly because he thinks about what he's going to say. I think he's handling it pretty well in his first 100 days.

KING: Sherri Shepherd is the guest.

SHEPHERD: He's giving me a lot of comfort.

KING: We will find out how she relates to Sarah Palin. She'll explain right after this.


KING: We're back with Sherri Shepherd, one of the co-hosts of "The View", the group voted by "Time Magazine" one of the most influential group or people in the world. By the way, we talked to you about Barack Obama. What do you think of Michelle?

SHEPHERD: I love my first lady, I really do. I think she's classy, she's intelligent. I think she shows us that a woman can hold her own, be her own person yet say I am going to take a step back and take care of my family. I love that about her. I love the fact that she loves her husband. So I am hoping for some babies, more children for the Obamas.

KING: Maybe a boy.

SHEPHERD: Mm-hmm. Maybe a boy.

KING: You have said that you have a kind of kinship with Sarah Palin because both of you are mothers of special needs children. What are - what is the case of your child?

SHEPHERD: Well, my son was born prematurely. He came at about five and a half months. He weighed a pound, 10 ounces. He fit in my hand and he has got developmental delays. So when Sarah Palin first ran I know that she had a baby with special needs, I related to her in that aspect and I was a little undecided when she first announced - when they first announced that she was running.

So that was the one thing that I related to her on.

KING: How old is your boy now?

SHEPHERD: My son Jeffrey is four years old and he is the most amazing little miracle I've ever seen.

KING: Is he doing better? How is he coping with what was obviously an initial problem?

SHEPHERD: He is doing great. He almost died at birth. I lost his little sister. So he hung on. He is doing great. He is running. Before I left he said, where you going mommy? You going to be with Babwa? So he is doing good.

KING: Bristol Palin has now become one of the advocates for abstinence for teenage pregnancy and preventing it. What do you make of that choice?

SHEPHERD: I think it's great. I am all about showing girls that pregnancy is not - there's consequences to getting pregnant and I like that she is showing girls that it is not all lollipops and fairy tales. It's hard work. I hope that she can show girls that they can try something else, go to school, get your education, wait, enjoy your life. So I applaud Bristol for doing this. This is a hard decision because a lot of people can come after her and have a lot of criticism for her. So I think it's great what she's doing

KING: Have you discussed it on "The View"? I imagine you have.

SHEPHERD: We have discussed it on "The View". We're pretty topical, Larry.

KING: I heard. Is your opinion different from a lot of the others?

SHEPHERD: Aboo (ph) we pretty much agree. I think there was probably some more criticism of Bristol coming from Joy, but I think that we all agree this is a really good thing that she's doing.

KING: Now you are a born-again Christian, right? You found your faith in adulthood.

SHEPHERD: I am. I am a Jesus groupie.

KING: How did you find it?

SHEPHERD: How did I find Jesus? Well, you know, this is out there, I used to be a Jehovah's Witness and I got out of that religion and I started going to church and learning about the principles of living by the Bible and they worked for me, I loved them and I accepted Jesus Christ probably back in 1993.

KING: Jehovah's Witnesses don't?

SHEPHERD: They believe in Jesus but they believe a little bit differently. Jehovah's Witnesses don't believe - they believe only 144,000 are going to heaven to help Jesus rule. Christians believe that we're all going to either heaven or hell. Jehovah's Witnesses don't believe in voting, Christians do. Which is why I didn't vote, for a long time, I didn't get into politics because I never voted. Because that's what I learned as a Jehovah's Witness.

So they believe a little differently.

KING: Having your faith - when things get kind of racy on "The View", does that ever kind of cause you to cringe?

SHEPHERD: No. I'm not Jesus. I'm not perfect. Every day I get up and I try to do the best that I can. Hopefully I'm pleasing the Lord. But I'm not perfect and I like sex when I was married, I'm celibate now.

KING: You are. You looking to get back into the scene? You want to marry again?

SHEPHERD: Yes, I do want to get married again so I can have sex. But - yeah, but, yeah I love being racy.

KING: Why do you like being on sitcoms?

SHEPHERD: I love making people laugh, Larry. That is my dream. I've always dreamed about being on sitcoms because to make a person forget about what they're going through, to make a person forget about the pain and just to laugh, that's music to my soul.

KING: Sherri Shepherd is our guest. Did she wrestle? Find out when we come back.


KING: We're back with Sherri Shepherd, the newest addition and a great addition to "The View". We'll be on "The View" in a couple weeks and it will be nice to meet you in person.

SHEPHERD: I can't wait to meet you, Larry.

KING: Thank you, dear.

If Joy Behar is the firebrand liberal and Elizabeth Hasselbeck is certainly the outspoken conservative, where are you?

SHEPHERD: I think I'm right there in the middle. There's things that I agree with Joy on and then there's things that I agree with Elizabeth on strongly. So there's - the moral stuff I think Lizzie and I, we're stuck at the hip. But there's stuff that Joy just says and I got to go with her.

KING: How about Whoopi?

SHEPHERD: I love Whoopi. Whoopi is just like cool jazz. She's just like yeah, you know, what you see is what you get with Whoopi and Whoopi has great insight and wisdom into things. She can cut through the B.S. which is what I love about her.

KING: And what makes Barbara special to you?

SHEPHERD: Barbara is - we just went to dinner last night and I love Barbara because she always - she tries to get into me, Sherri, ask in a different way. If everybody is doing the same thing, do it a little bit differently. She gets on me - be prepared. Read everything that you can get your hands on. And treat everybody like they're the most special thing in the world. And ...

KING: Barbara ...

SHEPHERD: (inaudible) that wonderful woman.

KING: She may be the most prepared person ever.

SHEPHERD: And she makes people cry. I want to make people cry. They keep laughing but I'm going to make them cry.

KING: Do a lousy act.

You're going to celebrate your second anniversary as a full-fledged "View" co-host in September. What have we learned from this job?

SHEPHERD: Wow, I have been stretched totally out of my comfort zone. I have learned that these are the four most beautiful women. I respect them greatly. It has been a wonderful joy ride. It has been wild and I don't what's going to happen from day to day. You can't do this job with your eyes closed.

KING: Anything you don't like about it?

SHEPHERD: Yeah. They don't give me enough food on the set. I come in in the morning and they've got bagels and some cream cheese. I eat. I thought specifically I asked for that in my contract. Some food. So somebody who is watching at ABC, we really need food.

KING: Bagels aren't good enough?

SHEPHERD: I'm a big girl. No, bagels aren't good enough. I need food.

KING: Bagels ...

SHEPHERD: Brain stuff.

KING: You recently went from the verbal square offs on "The View" to a smackdown experience with the WWE. Let's take a look.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) WWE (inaudible) Sherri Shepherd. (Inaudible).

(Inaudible) and Sherri Shepherd. A winning combination here on "Friday Night Smackdown".



KING: OK. What was that like?

SHEPHERD: That was as close as you can get to becoming a rock star when you go to Madison Square Garden, 17,000 people being with the WWE. It was such a wonderful experience. And I was with MVP (ph). He is 6'3, 249 pounds. Need I say more?

KING: How did that come about? You and that?

SHEPHERD: Well, I had seen him perform and I just was like, who is that? And then "The View" came to me and said WWE wanted to know if you wanted to help him out. I just was like, they are reading my mind because I love MVP so I said, well, that's a start (ph).

KING: Do you like wrestling?

SHEPHERD: I love wrestling. I'm a big fan of wrestling and I love the WWE and MVP just looks good in that spandex.

KING: Where are you from, Sher?

SHEPHERD: I'm from Chicago via Los Angeles.

KING: Which came first? SHEPHERD: Chicago came first. Then I moved to Los Angeles.

KING: And did you start your career in L.A.?

SHEPHERD: I started my standup comedy career in Los Angeles at the Comedy Store.

KING: And what was, for want of a better word, your break?

SHEPHERD: Wow, I think it was doing standup comedy and somebody saw me, they put me on "America's Funniest" or "Totally Hidden Videos", that was my first big break and then I auditioned for my very first sitcom, I quit my job as a legal secretary, 12 days later I booked a series regular on a sitcom and from there I never stopped.

KING: Sherri plays the wife of Tracy Morgan's character on "30 Rock". We'll get behind the scenes dish when we come back.


KING: Sherri Shepherd is back with us. She has a recurring role on "30 Rock", the wife of Tracy Morgan's character. She plays Angie Jordan. Here is a sample.


ALEC BALDWIN, ACTOR: Angie, do you like champagne.

SHEPHERD: No, it gives me a headache.

BALDWIN: This is a (inaudible) and I was saving it for a special occasion and I thought to myself, my God, this is it, am I right? Good news, good friends.

SHEPHERD: I clean this too or just the sex (ph)?

BALDWIN: Isn't she precious? Hey, fun fact about flam (ph). She recently came here to study engineering. (Inaudible)

SHEPHERD: You tell G.E. light bulb man I want "Sophie's Choice" out of my way.


KING: I had the pleasure of being ...

SHEPHERD: Oh, I like that girl.

KING: I had the pleasure of being on that show a little while ago. That's a fun show to do, isn't it?

SHEPHERD: You know, I am so honored that Tina Fey gave me the role of Angie Jordan. It is so much fun to play her.

KING: And what about working with Mr. Baldwin? SHEPHERD: Mr. Baldwin, Alec is great. He gives me acting tips all the time because Tina Fey writes all the scenes where Tracy and I make love. Every episode I am making love with Tracy. So Alec Baldwin one day showed me how to do it the right way. He stood next to me and he said I want you to come run and jump on me, and I said, no, no, I don't want to hurt you, and he said, no, no, I can hold you. And I ran and I jumped on him and then he laid me gently on the couch and he said that's how you make love. And I fell in love with Alec Baldwin.

KING: What's the big difference, Sherri, between standing on stage, doing stand up, you're it, you're there alone making people laugh and being in a scene with others?

SHEPHERD: You know, when you're onstage doing standup it's totally you. You live or die by your jokes. If people don't like the jokes, they don't like you. When you do a sitcom or an ensemble, you get to share all of the burden with somebody else which is really, really nice. It's not all on you.

But I like both. I like both. I love being selfish and being onstage and I love to share with other people.

KING: "30 Rock", though, you have to do a lot of do-overs, right?

SHEPHERD: We do a lot of do-overs. I found myself kissing Tracy a lot. You would have thought we were really married and I love Tracy because the first - I never played anybody's wife. I usually play secretaries and best friends so the first time I came to Tracy playing his wife he said, I like big girls, we gonna do fine. And I was like, thank you, Tracy.

KING: Have you always been big?

SHEPHERD: Have I always been - yeah.

KING: I mean like, you were big in high school?

SHEPHERD: I was always - Well, back in high school I think it was called "pleasantly plump" but yeah, I'm big and I embrace it. I love it. I love it, it's cute. As long as ABC sees me I'll be all right.

KING: It's cute but don't people sometimes make fun of it and aren't there - there's a - you see all these shows of losing weight and the like. How does it make you feel?

SHEPHERD: I sit there and go, they need to eat a cookie. It's OK. Big people are happy. But you know you've got to be healthy. I do want to - because I'm diabetic so - before I started "The View" I was a hundred - almost 190 pounds and they diagnosed me with Type II diabetes. So I lost weight because I wanted to be around for son. Because I'll be damned if my husband gets another girl to raise my kid. So I wanted to lose weight and be healthy for my kid. So you have to be healthy.

KING: All right. There are reports that Lifetime TV has ordered a comedy pilot starring you. True? SHEPHERD: Well, we're waiting to hear. I did a pilot for Lifetime based on my standup, it's called "Sherri." And I am hoping that Lifetime picks it up because it is a really funny -- very funny sitcom about life after divorce, and dating younger men and how you raise your kids. I think a lot of women can relate to being out here in the dating scene.

And hopefully Lifetime will pick it up and you can see me every week -- every day on "The View" and every week on my sitcom.

KING: In your career, have you done a lot of pilots?

SHEPHERD: Oh, my gosh, I am the pilot queen. I think I've been a series regular on nine shows, and a recurring on probably three. So I am the pilot girl.

KING: Do you take it personal when the pilot is not picked up?

SHEPHERD: Well, you know, it's not that I take it personal, but when you find out how much money you were going to make, I already spent the money. So I'm in debt before the pilot even got picked up. It's canceled. But I'm still in debt with the bill collectors because I spent money I don't even have.

So that's what you take personally.

KING: How do you like living in New York?

SHEPHERD: I love living in New York. It's a different vibe. You can go out at 3:00 in the morning and it's still alive. There are people. I go -- I get lost on the train all of the time because I take the train.

And so one time I ended up in Brooklyn, and I found a great cafe. Of course, I ran into a gang, but that was all right. Then I came back and met some people. And it's just a lot of stuff going on in New York. It's great.

KING: Take the train?

SHEPHERD: I take the train everywhere, I like to people watch.

KING: But don't they watch you?

SHEPHERD: It's amazing. Well, but you know, nobody says anything. New Yorkers don't have time to be, you know, getting all starstruck. They've got to get home to get to their kids. They've got to get -- you know, go home and cook. They don't have any time.

And plus, I love seeing people on the train because it's always people, you know, they're so creative because in New York you've got to hustle. So you've got creative people on the train trying to get money.

And I figure everybody has a story. So I like to people watch when I ride. KING: It's our windup night of "Salute 'The View'" week on LARRY KING LIVE. When we come back, Sherri changes her hair all of the time. We'll take a look at all of her looks when we return.


KING: We're back with our girl Sherri Shepherd of "The View."

Now your hairstyles on "The View," why so many changes?

SHEPHERD: Well, you know, I've worn different hair since I started doing standup. And wearing hair to me is like an accessory. It's like wearing a different shirt, because I have different looks.

Sometimes I look like Keisha (ph), sometimes I look like, you know, "Fight the Power," sometimes -- this is my "Eyewitness News Channel 7" look, "back at 2" look. And I just like different looks.

It's fun, when I go home, I can just -- I pull it off and I throw it on the couch, and I'm good to go.

KING: And now we're showing visuals of the many styles. Do you have a favorite?

SHEPHERD: Wow. I like my long curly.

KING: Like now?

SHEPHERD: That's my sexy look. This is -- no, this is like my "Eyewitness News," you know, report "we had a hurricane back out to you, John" look. So I like the long one. I like I've got big curly afro, which is really -- I like to rock that when men like that.

I like them all. I've got a Blagojevich, short one that I wore, but that wasn't too popular.

KING: What is your hair -- is that your real -- that's your color, though, right?

SHEPHERD: This is my color. Yes. My hair is very curly underneath.

KING: Now we know that you use Twitter a lot. In fact, "SherriEShepherd," that's you, tweeted "kingsthings," that's me. Oh, we tweeted you.


KING: Why do you like this? I'm trying to figure out why I like it.

SHEPHERD: I'm tweeting as we speak. I love Twitter because it's a 140 characters. It's a stream of consciousness. And I just get to tweet things that happen, like my son tripped over some clothes, but he fell into a bunch of my bras, so it was all padded when he fell.

And I just like to tweet that. That's fun for me. Also, too, Twitter is a great tool to get things out to people. This morning I was Twittering to 70,000 people who follow me that we have to remember our armed forces, the men and women who serve our country. That we could go on the Web site and just send our -- you know, the armed forces holiday cards or just greeting cards.

And that was really nice because hopefully 70,000 people sent, you know, our men and women some cards.

So it's just -- it's an informational thing. It's an educational tool, but it's a lot of fun for me.

KING: Does it begin, though, to kind of consume you?

SHEPHERD: It consumes me. Do you know I was on Twitter this morning for two hours. I ran my bathwater, I was on there for two hours. I went and got in that doggone bathwater. It was so freaking cold, but I wasn't wasting the water, so jumped in, kamikaze style.

I'm so, whew, Twitter -- you don't get anything done with Twitter, that's the problem. But I love it. I got Barbara hooked on it, and Elisabeth and Joy. So it's nice, but yet it is very, very addictive.

And please don't get mad at me, folks, if I don't follow you back. I can't follow everybody.

KING: Are you going to Twitter about this?

SHEPHERD: I already did. I've tweeted like three tweets. I sure did. I tweeted three tweeted in my twiggas (ph).

KING: While we've been on?

SHEPHERD: While we've been on, I tweeted. Yes, I tweeted to my twiggas (ph). I'm not "twessed out"


KING: A couple of other things. What did you make of the Miss California controversy?

SHEPHERD: You know, she spoke her truth. She was asked a question. This is America where we can -- we have freedom of speech. And I'm not mad at her because she said what she thought was right.

So this is America, this is why I love living here, because we all have our -- we all have freedom of speech and we have to respect that.

KING: Do you think the question she was asked was proper on a beauty pageant show?

SHEPHERD: Well, you know, somebody saw that she went to a Christian college, so I'm not surprised that the question was asked. A lot of people think that Christians are -- we're hateful, and we're not.

So I'm not surprised that the question was asked. I respect her for giving her opinion and her truth.

KING: What do you make of Ms. Susan Boyle over there in Scotland?

SHEPHERD: I love Susan Boyle with her one eyebrow! You go, girl!

She is so great. I think it was wonderful, you know, we place so much importance on the aesthetics and what people look like. And, you know, Susan Boyle just showed everybody that, you know, stop judging a book by its cover, because sometimes under something that is so unlikely to be beautiful, something so beautiful comes forth.

KING: Sherri, anything you haven't done you want to do?

SHEPHERD: I've got to do "Dancing with the Stars." I want to do the rumba. Yes, I want to do the salsa with Maksim. So I would love to do "Dancing with the Stars."

KING: They'd book you immediately. Do they know -- well, now wait...


SHEPHERD: I know, but they've got to come to New York. Yes, they have to come to New York. I was -- because I have a son, so I can't leave my baby.

KING: They do it in L.A. It won't happen. Sherri, you're a delight.


KING: I look forward -- I'll see you in a couple of weeks when we're on "The View."

SHEPHERD: I can't wait to see you, Larry. I'm tweeting about you.

KING: OK. We'll tweet about you.



KING: It's an ego trip. Thanks, Sherri.

Next week, Jesse Ventura, Elizabeth Edwards, and Caylee Anthony's grandparents will be among our guests. You can always find us online,

And now the news continues right here on CNN.