VOICES CARRIE by Dennis Hensley

By the time I arrive at Carrie Fisher's Coldwater Canyon home, the author/actress/script doctor seems less like my next interview subject than, say, a college midterm I've spent the last week cramming for. Last night I pulled and all-nighter just to catch her on Later with Greg Kinnear. Before that, it was Leno and Letterman. Though I missed her on Conan due to a VCR malfunction, and just plain passed on Regis and Kathie Lee, I'm still feeling more prepared going into my Carrie 101 midterm than I did for most of my exams in college. And what's more, the test is open book.

The book in questions is Fisher's third novel Delusions of Grandma. Like Postcards from the Edge and Surrender the Pink before it, Delusions finds its basis in Carrie Fisher's own "big loud life." In fact, the similarities between Cora Sharpe, the novel's protagonist and Fisher are so abundant, Fisher herself often says, "I" instead of "She" when referring to Cora.

For example, Cora makes her living punching up film scripts. Carrie's lent her pen to such films as Hook and Sister Act. Cora has her first child in the book. Carrie had her first child, Billie, 21 months ago. By the book's end, Cora and her baby's father are no longer together.  Ditto Carrie and Billie's father, CAA agent Bryan Lourd.  Cora's parents are maritally challenged and slightly kooky.  Carrie's parents are Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher.

There are some differences.  Cora writes with a partner.  Carrie doesn't.   Cora's never appeared on celluloid as an intergalactic royal with cinnamon rolls on the side of her head.  Carrie played Princess Leia in the Stars Wars trilogy , as well as roles in more recent films like Soapdish and When Harry Met Sally.

I'm in the middle of a post-Kinnear yawn when the front door opens and Fisher's housekeeper welcomes my into Casa de Carrie, a charming mission-like affair inhabited in other eras by both Bette Davis and costume designer Edith head.   

As I survey the room for a cozy and intimate interview site, I can't help but feel like the last guy in line at a kissing booth.

What if Carrie's mouth is tired?

What if Conan and Greg and Kathie Lee got the last "kiwi," Cora's term for good chat?

I'm about to yawn again when Carrie, half asleep herself, pads into the room.

"So where do you want to do this?" I ask.

"In bed," she groans facetiously.

"Works for me," I say.  What follows are some postcards from the bed.
 

DENNIS HENSLEY: Are you talked out?  You've been on every talk show there is.

CARRIE FISHER:  But they don't really have you say anything though.  I don't know what it was but yesterday was incredibly intense.  At one point during the day I remember falling asleep holding the hairdresser's assistant's hand.  When I woke up this morning it really felt like I had been on a bender.

Do talk shows make you nervous?

Mainly Letterman.  I got really really nervous going on Letterman and I literally hid under the sink.    I mean, it's the best show and you can look the best or the worst on it.

He is so quick.

I know and I can do that, too, but not at his speed and that's his arena.  He cannot fail.

You looked good on The Tonight Show between the two Johns, Goodman and Waters.

I thought my arms looked like blood sausages.  A new part of the talk show experience is this eye tears and my nose starts to run.  That's the talk show experience for me.

I was impressed that everyone stayed on the couch.

I was too.  I kept saying "Can I smoke?"  I had quit before, and now if have to quit again.  I think I can quit today, sort of.

Does everyone ask the same questions?

It gets into a range.  Sometimes they're good.  A lot of the thing about, "It's very much like you and this all happened..."

Do you find most interviewers have read the book?

You could always tell if they have. Leno confused me when he said he was up to page 73 and you'd already had the baby.  I thought I had the wrong book.  I don't have the baby until the end.  I haven't done his show in years.   It was the only bad talk show experience I had when I came out with Postcards.  And I'm not saying it was bad.  It's just that I'm accustomed to being pretty good on them.  He just was in a snotty mood that night or something so I've just turned it down every time since.

I loved when you presented him with the diapers.  I think in the wake of Madonna on Letterman it's rude to not show up with underpants of some sort.

I decided to do it at the last minute.  It really threw him off it looked like.  I had run out of all my underwear.  I was going to do it to Letterman but you don't want to fuck with him.  They used to say to me, "Don't flirt with Dave.  He really doesn't like it."  But it's no problem because I don't flirt with anybody.  I can say things that are provocative but I don't consider it flirting and I'll only do it if I'm desperate.  I suppose I flirted with Greg Kinnear, but I didn't really.

You only laid on his desk and announced you were ovulating.  I don't think that would be considered flirting.

I was ovulating on television.  It was way too heavy.

Have you ever thought about hosting your own talk show?

I'd have to do it like this; in bed.

This bed is so soft.   I'm laying down now.

It's very good to lay down, isn't it?  I have the best bedding in the world.

How old is Billie?

21 months.  She's groovy.  She's so funny now.  She communicates.  "Jokin' mommy.  Funny mommy.  Crazy Mommy.  Silly mommy."  She was at the Tonight Show backstage and she looked up at the TV and she said, "Get down mommy."

What were her first words?

They always say the first words are "Daa Daa" because that's easiest to say.  I've always thought that's completely unfair.  The biggest thing I remember is she found her hand.  That's the funniest thing they do and they just stare at it and it's theirs and it's on them.   She just started saying, "In a minute."  "In a minute" is a big thing of hers.   We got some great pictures of Billie.  Fantastic.  It looks like Billie's interview with Vanity Fair.

In her home environs?

Naked.


Did she do the cliche Hollywood actress shot with her hands in front of her chest?

No, she's just leaning down and you can see everything, whatever there is to see.

In your book, you write, "There was simply no earthly way that fetuses could be formed from intercourse.  No intercourse she'd had anyway."  Do you think sex is overrated?

Totally.  I hear people talk about it.  I have girlfriends, not that many though, that love it.  Yeah, I like it, but it's that rare time when all the planets are sort of aligned with you.  To me, it's not anything worth fighting for.  "Oh, let me have him.  He has a great ass."

I have this theory that the life before this one is like a Supermarket express line and you have to have 9 items or less and I got up there with ten so I had to choose between...

Sex and something.

Right, like penmanship and I chose penmanship.

I come from a frigid family. That's why it's always funny to me that they say anything weird about my family's sexual preferences.  Sexual preference?  Sex isn't a preference.   I had been outed with Penny Marshall in the Advocate. There's always been rumors this way and that way about me.

Does it bug you or amuse you?

Amuse.  I wish I had a story.  No one ever came on to me, which is the awful thing.  I hear Courtney Love has come out said she's been with fifteen women or whatever.  Who has the time?   Who came on to you?  Where were you?  What drugs were you on? But it is what drugs were you on.  I wish that I had some truth to tell but it is not going to happen at 37.  So I went on Arsenio and he said, "So, you were outed?"  And I said, "Yeah.  I'm just trying to imagine the moment it happened.  She came home from work going, "Oh, Carrie, it was so heavy...the camera couldn't get the shot..." and I said,  "Shut up.  Shut up.  I'll go down on you if you'll only shut up."

Does she have an L for Laverne on her panties?

And I have one to for Leia on the other side.

So you could just rub L's.  The perfect marriage of sex and penmanship.

Uh-huh.  We really got into it.  But I don't have any fantastic stories.   I have a really close gay friend and I called at one point and I said, "My bisexuality is being impugned.  I want you to start a rumor about me."

Were people were saying, that you didn't have the balls to swing that way?

Something like, "She's too afraid.   It would be too real for her."  There's probably a simpler explanation but I don't know what it is.  I didn't ever meet the right woman?

In the book you comment on the fact that in order to procreate men have to have orgasms whereas women don't.  Could you imagine if they did?

I would love it.  And I would love it if men had to have children.  I want a government to come in that limits how long men can procreate for.  I mean, I don't like this thing where women can have twins at 63 and stuff.  I'd rather it be that we all have to stop at 52 so that it's fair.  But that men can have children in their 60s and stuff, I think is completely unfair.

To the children?

To women because they can leave.  You know, you throw out your old wife that's going through menopause and you get some new young one.

Like you say in the book, "Younger women make older men look younger, while younger men make older women look silly."

Looks awful.  Look what, basically, they say about Cher.  You know, it's like, "Have him washed and brought to my tent."  That's gross.  There's something gross about it.  But the same wouldn't be true (for a man).  It'd be like, "Oh, look what he got."

Have you ever gone out with a younger man?

Brian was four years younger.

That's not that big of a difference.

It's enough.  I mean, at a certain point I'm going to sprint past some finish line and he's not; the finish line of my looks, the finish line of my sexuality, the finish line of whatever. I think it depends on the guy, but I sort of also think it doesn't.  In terms of culturally, if I'm not a real good girl, then they can discard you particularly if you're older.  I was going to do a magazine called "Deserted Woman".

What would be its features?

What to wear right when you're dumped, what wear two months after that, then 6, color fold-outs for if you're dumped with children and then every month you'd have a new celebrity dump.

You can have a "Who Dumped Who" centerfold map.

Oh yeah, all the connect-ups of the dumps.  But if it's mutual, you can't really officially get in the magazine.   You can't get a cover.  I want to make it hip to be left.

I could have been in it a year ago.

Are you in a relationship?

Not with another person.

You should have one with all of us at our house.  It's fun here.  But it's not fun if you're in a relationship with me.  It's just fun here if you're in a sort of other kind of relationship; like Billie and I have fun, Billie's nanny and I have fun, we all have fun, but the primary relationship person doesn't have fun, they feel secondary.

One of the reasons that Ray leaves Cora in the book is that she can't give up her friends and her work and make him the focus of her life.

He needed a wife.  And so did I.  But it's more unseemly for a woman to do.  There was a female actress/star who had a husband who was something, you know he had some little job that was nebulous like a producer or something, and the nickname for him was "the dumb blonde."  And he was a perfectly nice guy, but he was just like with her.  And I think it's emasculating for any guy to be the boyfriend, the creature at her side particularly if it's a celebrity woman.  It takes a really secure guy to do it and a guy that knows he has his place there and it isn't the dumb blonde position.  He has to take that for himself, it can't be brought to him like a cake.

Do you find yourself editing in your head?  Like there's a red pencil going all the time.

I did it on Kathy Lee and Regis.  They asked me something about not graduating from high school and I started down some road in my mind which had to do with LSD and then I edited myself because it was some morning show and I figured people would think it was a terrible thing to say.  And I said, "I just edited myself," and my friend Hannah and Carol cheered.  They knew it was some frightening thing that I was thinking.

When I'm putting off writing something, I find myself relishing the most mundane tasks, like vacuuming, doing laundry, whatever.

I used to redecorate the yard, clean the garage.  It's stuff you do when you're pregnant.  Nesting things.

Have you ever had writer's cramp and menstrual cramps at the same time?

I don't ever really get menstrual cramps, but I did get them on the road this time right as I was going on Charlie Rose. I was laying on the floor and it was a nightmare.  I'll not get graphic.  And I stood up like marionette strings tightening and walked to my doom.

You write of Cora's parents: "Neither smiled much in photographs but both loved to have them taken."

That's not true of mine.  That's true of the people that lived in this house, Edith Head and her husband.  When we got this house, we inherited a huge box of pictures of them and they never smiled in these pictures and my mother said that Edith Head would knock you down to have her photo taken.

Does Edith Head's ghost ever appear to you and tell you what to wear?

Obviously not.  But I did hear that Edith Head, when she got depressed, used to wander around in a yellow nightgown in the back yard, and I always expect to see her.

The last third of the book deals with Cora's grandfather who has Alzheimer's Disease.  Where did you get the basis for his character?

My grandfather had Alzheimer's.  He was always saying, "I want to go home," and he'd be home.  "Are we there yet?"   "Are we leaving soon?"   It's the feeling of displacement and not being quite right in wherever they are in their head and that's how he felt and then he was put in an old folk's home.  He died soon after he went into the home.  What I wrote about was the fantasy that my mother had of getting an ambulance and taking him because, legally, if your mate puts you in an old folks home, we have to remember this, you and I, we can't get out unless they let us out if we have kind of mental disability, which I'm sure I'll get.

Cora takes a train ride to Texas in the book.  Have you ever made that trip yourself?

Yes, it was groovy.  I didn't take it, of course, with my mother, but I could have.

Would having your mother along have made it more or less groovy?

Fine.  My mother would have ended up performing Molly Brown in the dining car or something.  Everyone on the train would have known that it's my mom because she would have put her Debbie Reynolds regalia on and it would have been like a huge thing.  It would have been great.  She's great, my mom.

In the book, when Cora, who makes her living punching up scripts, runs into a beautiful starlet at a party, you write: "It was no good to be confronted with what she never could look like, and the fact that she made these young beauties sound smarter and funnier than they were was a fate she didn't wish to consider at just that moment."

It's something that I can't think about.  My ex-husband said it is so unfair that they have this power.  It's like being born with a lot of money.  Somebody beautiful is born with this extraordinary power that they did nothing to acquire.  That's why models are always having to go on television and say that their Mensa, and say what their IQ is.   Do you know what your IQ is?  I don't know what mine is.  I don't even know what my bra size is for that matter.  But, I mean, they really have some giant IQ?  Really?  Well, then I don't.

Whatever they have, I want the opposite.

But I mean, what's the test?  Is it about connective reasoning or is it about information.  If it's about information, I don't have a high IQ.  Let's make up our own test.

Question 1: If you were Christy Brinkley and you crashed in a helicopter...

So now I hear they're separating?  What's the deal?

Maybe she wanted to try to get two People Magazine covers in one month.

Did she?

She got one for the helicopter.

Oh, and this is the second one.

At the moment, my answering machine says that I can't come to the phone right now because she's laying on top of me.

Why, because she fell out of the helicopter?

No, because, according to People she laid on top of one of the other passengers and kept them warm until help arrived.

So you're answering machine message is that she's laying on top of you?

Yeah, with "Uptown Girl" in the background.  I bet you give great outgoing message.

I just have my daughter on it now.  I change it all the time with her.

I think I'm going to start trying to get the celebrities I interview to do my outgoing messages.

You definitely should.  It's the most fun.  

Will you be my first?

Sure.   My mother does some of them sometimes and then it's really funny.  Once she did, "Carrie can't come to the phone right now cause I've gotten back together with her father and we're trying to raise her right" and she did one singing "Tammy" and I'm screaming in the background like I'm being tortured.

I remember reading the Madonna interviews you did for Rolling Stone.  You said in the piece that you were taking care of your friend Julian who was dying of AIDS at the time.  Is William, the friend Cora takes care of in the book, based on Julian?

Yes.  That was heavy.  And I was late for the interview, but it was such a good excuse.  If I would leave, Julian would try to get the nurse to go, so I wouldn't have to pay for it.    It was very expensive, his insurance.  This kills me, these insurance people.   I want to fucking kill them, you know, with AIDS.  They said he only needed a nurse half day.  He was incontinent and he could not walk, so which half of the day do you think was expendable? He needed nurses care 24 hours so I was paying for half.  And I said, "I'm making this much money on this rewrite and I will go to hell if I don't share it with you" and he understood that because he felt too guilty otherwise.  But that day, he let the nurse go and, of course, he got 106 fever.

Was he in the hospital?

He was in my house. The nurse came back and put him in like an ice sleeping bag to bring the fever down, so when I left he was like that.  And I arrive to do the interview and Madonna's in a negligee.  That's what she chose to wear with me like some sex-kitten type thing, mules, the whole thing, like what those drawings wear in Playboy.  It was so surreal.  And I arrive fresh from some medical drama.  Actually, because of that, I think she was very good in the interview.  She was subdued by that information and it sort of knocked out her thing.  I didn't have to drain her that day of her blow job material, where as the first time we spoke she just wanted to talk about sex and penis size.   That really matters to you, penis size?  Anyway, he died like five days later.

Did you ever in your life think that that was something you'd have to deal with?

I never thought about it, but if I thought about it, I would think yes.  Knowing me, that's something more right for me, in terms of if you think about who I am, than like making somebody breakfast.

Was writing about it cathartic?

I remember Buck Henry saying to me...I said, "Well, Julian's dying."  He said, "Julian's been dying."  and I said "No, Julian is now...like he's going to die like in a day."  And he said, "Well, don't tell me about it.  I'll read about it."  But yeah, I did need to write about it.  My friend Dr. Klein saw Julian and he said, "Are you prepared for him to die with you?" and I said, "I don't know."  See, he didn't look bad to me. I mean, I know he looked awful but when you know someone you think of them in a continuity.  I just factored Julian from all along into the Julian I was looking at and in that way he didn't look that sick, but of course, he was dying.  He was in denial about it, so I went with his thing.

You've said that when it comes to your film writing, you're great in emergency situations.

The best, but being good at emergency situations is very different from being there with someone who's dying and having them rely on you to make the situation okay. That I could do that, that he gave me the gift of allowing me to be the person that did that with him and trusting that I would know what to do, I then knew what to do.  He let me be all right about his dying which made me be alright about mine, and about the whole issue of it.

In the book, Cora says she wishes somebody like her would be there when she was dying...

And then I realized that I would.  But I'd be on the wrong end.

When you first started writing and probably still, there are people who said, "Oh, Carrie Fisher's just a spoiled celebrity brat, born into privilege.  What could she possibly have to say..."  Do you think that the generosity you show in your personal life is how you...

Earn it?  Yeah.  But it's not financial.  I have to be very large of spirit.  I have to think that what is mine is not mine, but to be shared with anybody who needs it that is in effect, mine.   My choice family, or who I choose to be my family, who then comes into my circle is going to be protected by me and they know that and people that are my friends that have AIDS, I choose to think that their AIDS is afraid of me.  That's a terribly weird thing to say, but I choose to think it, because it helps me.

"And in this corner, weighing in at ninety something pounds, Carrie Fisher..."

Yeah. "Okay, go up against me.  Come on.  Come on."

At one point in the book, Cora announces that she's officially becoming a gay man.  What do you think the connection is between you/Cora and gay men?

We're both after the same thing in a way and we don't have the sexual confusion.  We both have man trouble.   We both probably have dominant mothers.  

Is there a sense of humor connection?

Definitely.  And there's an empathy.  I really feel that my gay men friends take care of me and care about me and would go the distance for me and they know I would do the same for them.  My gay men friends are like my best friends.  It's easily 60%.

Is C3P0 gay?

Uh-huh.

Did you bond with him?

He was like one of those queens that was like a fussy queen, you know, so yes I bonded with him but the fussy queen thing is not my dominant queen energetic.

Cora and her friend Bud fantasize about what it would be like if science could invent wonder patches for things other than to make you stop smoking; like the mood patch or the chess patch.   If you could have three patches what would they be?

The good relationship patch, the money patch and, I guess the good health patch and that would have to include stuff like that I would have to not want to do drugs again and I would not want to smoke.  It would be a patch that pretty much made me Tofu Queen.

Bud has a name for his private parts...

Sad Jim.

Have you ever named yours?

Fuzzy Womp.  I forgot to put that in.  I'm so glad that you reminded me.  When I was pregnant I would say "Shhh, the Fuzzy Womp is sleeping."   "The Fuzzy Womp is crowded."  That's a good title, "The Fuzzy Womp Is Crowded."   I also have other names for it; The Lagoon of Mystery.

It's better than the Temple of Doom.

That would be the name of your thing.  Billie calls hers "Hootie."   "Hootie," she says.  "Hootie open."  "Hootie closed."

Is Hootie ever sleeping?

At her age, you bet it's sleeping.

Have you ever suspected that someone was using the Princess Leia action figure as a voodoo doll?

My ex-husband (Paul Simon).  I swear to God, he had a little doll of me and he'd put a pin in it.  I found it in his drawer, I promise you.  He was made at me at the time.

Did you feel the prick?

No.  He used to do stuff when he got mad at me that was so weird.  When I think he was probably this age that I am now when he put pins in the Princess Leia doll, it's so weird.  I should have had a V-8.  

How long were you and Paul Simon married?

We married at 26 but I'd already been with him for around 5 years.  So it was this weird afterthought, or not, and then we stayed married for a second.  I think the divorce was final after two years and then we got back together again for a while.  So, off and on for like 13 years.  There'd be a year we didn't speak but that was the relationship.

One of the ideas in Surrender the Pink is that two people who are too similar don't work well together in a romantic relationship.

It looks like with me, hardly anybody works together.

Would you want to get into another relationship?

It would be ridiculous to do with my child because the time that you spend on a new relationship is the time that she needs.

One of the articles I read said that you'd "given up on coupling."  Have you?

No.  Not at all.  I mean, my father left when I was 1 1/2, so if I didn't give up then, and I did to a certain degree...I mean, no, I don't give up.  I'm a jerk.    I don't know. I don't have a good role model for it.  My mother is now divorced three times.  My father is married for the fourth time.  I mean, it doesn't look promising.  I would like to have other children, otherwise I would say to you I wouldn't have another relationship.  

Do you have to have the relationship to get the children?

I think that you have to at least try to give it the right configuration at the top, at least you have to be able to say, "Well, your father and I were happy when you were conceived."

Instead of saying...

"You were a test tube baby."  "I got you at a sperm bank."  I mean, those options are not open to me.  And what would they write in Us Magazine with the little shoes; "Carrie Fisher and Vile of Sperm."  I don't want that.

What was the most inappropriate thing you ever did in the Princess Leia costume?

I wore the bathing suit to an Italian restaurant across the street.  The wookie used to go out in his outfit, too.

Did you ever do anything naughty in it?

You mean like have sex with someone?  Not in that outfit, no.  I'm not like that really.  We've established that I have good penmanship, too.

I used to steal the way other people made certain letters and make them my own.  I was a like handwriting kleptomaniac.

I had that too about certain R's and T's and stuff.  Yet, I didn't ever say to someone, "How do you give head?"

If you were in a game of Truth or Dare and someone dared you to service an Evian bottle...

I'd do what ever the truth was.  To me, I'm much more interested in the truth anyway.  We used to play Truth or Dare in England and we got people to do amazing things.  When I went to drama school in England it was like a Hollywood party, like what they think we do here. A piano fell out of a window, say, once at a party.  It was wild.  We had a costume party and I remember opening the bathroom door and this guy dressed as Hitler was in the shower with one of the vocal coaches.  People would be mating on the floor and waving to you from underneath someone.  Someone came up to me once and said, "Lynne just threw up on your bed but she's sorry."  Oh, well then it's okay, because I only care about good manners.  The vomiting is secondary to how she reacts to it, if she behaves well.

Have you ever thought about writing about that time?

Yeah, but I have such a bad memory.  I was like 18 or 19 and I was a virgin.    

When did you lose your virginity?

Like 18.

Who was the guy?

Some guy who lives here now.  He was the most normal person I ever was out with.

What people count or don't count as sex always amazes me.  I have friends who'll like perform oral sex on someone and say, "But we didn't have sex."

That that doesn't count as sex, because they didn't actually insert their genitalia into another?  That always kills me that they don't count it.  Also, they don't consider blow jobs infidelity.  "I wasn't unfaithful to you."

"Her mouth just happened do be there."

"I laid down with him, I like, you know, held on to his genitals, I did all this other stuff, but that's not being unfaithful.   It's the actual procreative act that makes it wild and woolly."  I know people that are born again Christians that don't count that they had an affair because they would just like blow each other.

Where do you keep the trophy they gave you for not sleeping with Warren Beatty?

It's in the closet.

Have you ever been to a psychic?

Yeah.  The recent psychic experience was that Patty Smith went to a psychic who told her that she'd be living with a woman soon and the fire happened and her house was threatened and so she ended up moving in here with her daughter, two mice, a dog and a cat and one of my dogs ate one of the mice.

But you said you were sorry.

But the dog barked that it was sorry.  Her daughter wasn't real disappointed as long as she got a new mouse.

I went to a New Years party when the host brought in a psychic but she got lost and arrived two hours late.  I was like, "Wait, you're telling me that you're sure I should change careers in mid-June, but you didn't know whether to turn right or left on Doheny?"

I got a psychic in London when we were working on Empire Strikes Back and there was a line waiting.  Someone was taking a real long time and we went in the room and (a certain director) was making out with the psychic and her top was off.

What was she basing her reading on?  "This hair pattern on your goody trail tells me..."

"That you'll be having sex with a psychic at a party soon."   That was the same party where (a certain actor) had sex with a girl in the bathroom and then left and for the rest of the party this girl was sobbing in the kitchen.  Every time when my life has been like that, it's been in England.  The English go the craziest.  The parties last really late.  There are people on every known drug.  "The person with heroin just got here."  "Really?"  "We're playing Poetry Consequences on Cocaine."  "Oh, well I don't really like cocaine but where's the heroin person?"  Parties here, you're lucky if you can get them to last until midnight.  Unless there's like the drug group that's in my bathroom. "Hey, run out yet?  Or doesn't it matter."

I bet you throw great parties.

I'll get your number.  You'd be a good thing to these parties.

I'm here with bells on.

That's what I'm assuming.  Literally.

You went to Liz Taylor's Disneyland Birthday bash.  What was that like?

I spent the whole evening with Joni Mitchell going on rides.  But it was only Fantasy Land and no Matterhorn. Now, come on.

I have friends who take turns being wheelchair bound so they don't have to stand in line.

We did that with my grandmother.  I want to go to Euro- Disney with Billie cause there's no lines because the French hate us.

Speaking of Liz, I know you like to make up perfume names.  Do you have any new ones?

Empathy; feel like them smell like this.  Arbitrary; for the man who doesn't give a shit how he smells.  Wolverine; for the scent of the hunt.  I have a lot of them written down.  It's a really fun game to play with Robin Williams because it just gets him started.

If somebody held a gun to your head and made you do an infomercial, what would the product be?

A product for your personality.  How to make your personality better to go with your new body and your new hair and your new make-up.   I'd help people put expressions on their face and put something behind their eyes.  It would be an exercise tape for your head.

Who would be on the couch with you like Cher is with Lori Davis?

Somebody who needed it.  Kate Moss or any one of the other ones, Christy Turlington.

Did you see that "Model Conversation" show on MTV where they all sat around and talked about their lives as supermodels?

I think the victory is them just talking and talking and talking and they think they're saying something interesting because we're all attending it.  The other person on the infomercial is Madonna.  After the Letterman thing she's going to need that product.  I can help her into her next phase.  I think she has to start wearing glasses.

Where do think you get your sense of irony from?

I don't know.  Just like looking at my family.  Well, my mother maybe.  We'll see this afternoon.  She's coming.  That's exciting for you, you can meet mom.  We're doing a three-way interview today with my mother and Billie which will be very interesting to hear what Billie has to say about being in the family.

Is it hard to find friends that share your perspective on life?

You find each other and it's not that easy.  It's always looking for the conversation or the kiwi. (Sings) Once you have found it, never let it go. You can feel a shift occurring.  Can you feel the change in atmosphere? My mother's here.

DEBBIE REYNOLDS:  I've had my saga of arrival.  Didn't bring my house keys, of course, because people do that who are normal.  So I get to my house and my secretary doesn't have her keys because she gave them to my houseguest...

You'll have no questions after you watch this for a while.

DR:  Could not get into my house.  Could not get into my car.  Took my secretary's car who had to go to the neighbor's house, who has a mad dog, to phone.  This goes on.  Do you got time for this?

I'm here for the duration.

DR:  This is only the last hour.  Cause, of course, I had to work two shows last night, I got to bed at three o'clock in the morning because I entertained the world.

Do you live in the Valley?

DR:  I have always lived in the Valley.  Well, in between husbands going broke.  It depends on the husbands actually, where I live.  I'm not really sure what they're losing this year.  Am I being to provocative?  I'm not ovulating.  I have Mental Pause now.

CF: Is that what that is? Look, Angelo had me sign these first edition Franklin Mint originals.  Isn't it beautiful?  Everyone should have been done like this.

DR: Who said this for how many years?

CF: You did.

DR:  She doesn't listen to her mama.  Wait till I write a book called "Daughter Dearest."  Do you have a hot roller by chance?  I don't mean a man.

CF: A high roller.

DR:  Do you have the kind you plug in, the kind I've been using for 17 years.  It's called a vibrator.  She bought it for me.

CF: Here's a funny thing.  My contraceptive sponges expired.  Look, 10/93.

DR:  Give them to me then because it doesn't matter.

Can I have one as a souvenir?

CF: Yes.

DR:  Yes.

They're called the Today sponge, yet they're telling you today is really not a good day to use one.

They're yesterday's Today sponges.

Guess I'm out of here.  Thanks for the sponge and the kiwi.  Wait, what about my answering machine?

CF: Okay, are we going to do it?

Just talk into the mic part there.

Hi, this is Carrie Fisher.  Dennis can't come to the phone right now cause we're in bed together, talking about...everything.  You know we're not having sex because neither of us really enjoy it.  But perhaps, who knows, this could be our Waterloo.  At the beep, do it.