I’m having a good ol’ American beer. Cheers.
I’m so happy to be here. I am so grateful. You know how this industry goes, it ebbs and flows, up and down like a rollercoaster. I feel like I planted all these seeds along the way and they’re all flourishing around the same time. It really started in 2020. I started my podcast and then I got “The Real.” It’s busy, but I’m so grateful.
I came to this country as an immigrant and because of that, I feel the responsibility of taking all the opportunities that are given to me. My mom brought us to America for a better way of life, for more opportunities. That’s part of my hustle. I went to therapy and my therapist asked me, “What will mean success to you? When will you know you’ve arrived?” And I said, “I don’t know, I’m just going to keep doing it.”
You have the drive, you obviously have the passion. Are you good at being still? Do you struggle in the quiet moments?
It depends. When COVID hit, I panicked because it was out of my control. Everybody was home, everybody was doing the same thing, and I wasn’t making banana bread or none of that. That was really hard for me. When I have time now, it’s either that I savor the quiet and the stillness or I have to talk myself into enjoying the quiet and the stillness, because, girl, it’s about to start. We were going back on “The Real,” “Housewives” is going to start up again and the kids are back in school.
How do you fill up as a woman?
Sometimes, I have to hit a wall to realize, “Okay, I need to shut things down.” I will turn off my phone, I will take a bath, I will listen to music, I will sage, I will try to meditate. That’s the only time I can really recharge and just take time for myself. Sometimes I’ll do a whole weekend of that.
You had said that you thought Kris Jenner would make a good cast member on RHOBH. Why do you think she’d be good on the show?
I think she’s definitely outspoken. She’s in charge. She’s a boss. She might give the other women a run for their money. I think she would be cool. I mean, she’s friends with Kyle [Richards], obviously. She knows Kathy [Hilton] now that Kathy’s joined us. I think she would be a great fit. I don’t think she would do it, because she’s so busy and she really doesn’t need to, but if she were to come on, she’d actually be pretty good.
The topic of Erika Jayne… what do you make of how she’s dealing with things at this exact moment?
I don’t wish this on anybody, what she’s going through. It’s hard. Every day there is something in the press. Every day it’s something. The fact that she showed up to the reunion says a lot, because I don’t think I would have. I would have been under the covers freaking out. Because it’s a reality show where you get dissected, not only by the people you’re with, but also the people watching. For her to show up under this kind of scrutiny, I mean, this is huge stuff. I do wish she would have gone a little lighter on Sutton, but other than that, she showed up.
Are you still feeling like an outsider with the women on the show?
I definitely felt that way. Towards the end of us shooting, things shifted a bit, but I haven’t seen anybody since. I’ve seen Sutton and then we did the reunion, so that’s hard to say because the reunion really airs everything out that you’ve ever felt. So, you can’t really judge that.
You are a single woman who says she is open to love, even open to marriage again. What do you enjoy about dating? Because girl, I’m single and I hate it.
I used to hate it too, and that’s why I would marry the first person who came along! But what I’m trying to do is be more open. I’m trying to enjoy the process. It’s not my favorite thing to do. I don’t wake up and think, “I can’t wait to go to the gym.” I’m not that girl. I, too, don’t like it but I’m trying to be open about it. I’m trying to do it in a different way. What about you? Are you dating a lot? Are you dating a little?
I am dating very little. I mean, so little. My friends tell me, “Catt, you’re not going to meet him in your backyard.” Any advice?
That’s okay, you have to feel it. The timing has to be right. If you’re forcing it, I don’t think anything’s going to come with that. But that being said, a friend of mine who never went out, we used to always tell her, “No one’s going to knock on your door.” Sure enough, an old high school boyfriend of hers
ran into her sister and her sister told him, “She would love to see you.” And he goes, “Can we stop by right now?” Her sister said, “Yeah!” She called her and said, “I’m coming over.” She didn’t say she was bringing anyone. So, he literally knocked on her door. She opened the door and they’ve been dating ever since. Damn it, man!
So what you’re saying is my gardener is my future husband.
We’ll have a double date with my gardener as well.
You are one of a few narrators for the audiobook of “Good Night Stories For Rebel Girls: 100 Real-Life Tales of Black Girl Magic.” What was it like to be a part of this?
I knew about Rebel Girls, but I didn’t really pay attention until it was brought to me. I started reading some of the stories and I learned so much about these great women that have done amazing things. I thought, “Absolutely, I want to do this.” I got to go into the studio and record the stories. It was so fun. I am so proud of that project. Some of the stories…you didn’t learn in school. I didn’t know about Katherine Johnson, who was a mathematician and “Hidden Figures.” There’s so many stories that we don’t get to hear.
It’s not only women of excellence, by the standard traditional sense. It’s all these amazing Black women and girls from past and present. It’s what should be in the history books, but isn’t.
Yes, absolutely true. Thank you for talking about it.
It’s important to address what is going on at the border. How devastating and heartbreaking it is to watch these refugees being treated like criminals. You are an immigrant from Haiti yourself. I know that it just wrecks your soul to watch that happen.
It wrecked my soul to the core. We’ve had enough. We can’t seem to get a break. Earthquakes, political unrest, and then there were hurricanes and floods. These people are not coming over to say, “Give me a free hand.” They actually are trying to survive, coming to Texas to get water and food and supplies that they can’t get. And to be treated like that, I mean, it’s inhumane. I couldn’t believe what I was watching. We have so much food, so many things in excess in America, that to not be able to help your fellow man to me is just, I don’t get it. It really, really crushed me.
I don’t know what the answer is. I don’t know how to fix it.
Keep talking about it.
You are receiving the distinguished humanitarian award for your work in Haiti with the Angels For Humanity charity. What do you do with them?
We have a beautiful luncheon every year with proceeds that we take to Haiti in December to feed over 4,000 kids. We feed them breakfast, lunch. We give them presents. Santa comes. It may sound simple to us, but it is everything to the kids. It is absolutely everything. To me, it wouldn’t be fair if I had this platform and I got to live this life. It could have been me still in Haiti needing help. I wouldn’t get the blessings that I have if I didn’t, in turn, provide for someone less fortunate than me.
We hear you and bravo. Keep up the good work. And now I’m making a serious 180 to our quick rapid fire. Are you ready?
I’m ready. I might as well take another drink.
Here we go. Rapid fire with Garcelle. One designer label you would want to be buried in?
One housewife you wish you never had to sit next to at dinner again?
I cannot believe you’re asking me that. Lisa Rinna.
Least favorite domestic chore that you have to do at home?
Laundry. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it.
One male celebrity that you haven’t met, but you sure would like to?
Brad Pitt is always on my list. Although I did meet him, but I was on a date and I hated that. I swear. I wanted to shove my date out of the way. I was thinking, “Brad Pitt is in the room and I’m with a date? Get out of here!”
The most important virtue that you are trying to teach your boys?
Only one… compassion.
One red carpet fail that sticks out in your mind over the years?
I wore a rainbow colored poncho back in the day. That was horrible.
What is one naughty snack food that you run to when you are stressed?
Last famous person that you texted?
On your podcast you said that any potential partner would have to fit into your life and that you lead a big life. What does leading a big life mean to you and how does it shape your choices both personally and professionally?
When I say a big life, it’s not necessarily a glamorous life. I wear a lot of hats. From being a host, to being a mom, to being a friend and a sister. There’s a lot going on and I want someone who has his own thing, so that when we come together, we can share different perspectives.
What’s your advice for someone who’s looking to make it in the talk show realm?
Learning to listen. Listening is a big component, because someone may say something to you and if you’re not really paying attention because you’re just ready for your rebuttal, you may miss something. Watch a lot of talk shows so you get the idea of it. My makeup artist who worked on “The Real” with me, she was a seat filler at “The Real” just a year and a half before starting to do makeup. Then she started doing my makeup. So, the ones that you can go to, go in person, see if you can be an intern. Overall, just have an opinion and stick with it, even if it’s unpopular.
How does it feel being the first Black housewife [on RHOBH]? Is it quite an honor for you, or is it something that you feel uncomfortable with?
No, I mean, I never thought I’d do reality. So when I decided to do it, I didn’t realize the impact that show would have on my life. There was a lot of pressure. Being the first of anything, I felt like I had to represent my Haitian sisters. I had to represent my Black sisters. I was going crazy. And then I realized, I just have to be me. If I’m not me, it’s going to seem phony and I didn’t want to come out and act in a way that I don’t behave in real life. It was a lot of pressure, but I got over it.
Can I ask you one superficial question? I love all the clothes and bags. Are the clothes and bags yours? Are they loaned to you? How does that work?
Everything is mine. I can say that because I’m not a whole brand… I love Zara. I love Gucci. I love Target. Everything is mine. The only time I would borrow something is for a confessional, like jewelry. For the blue look that I had this season, the jewelry was borrowed from a friend of mine, Safia.
When is your memoir coming out?
We are doing a cover reveal in a couple of weeks and then the book comes out early next year. Originally, we were going to call it “Finding My G-Spot,” but that wouldn’t clear with Amazon, so the title now is “Love Me As I Am.”