Stargazing | Charles Barkley, Melissa Gilbert, the Duaggars

Charles in charge

There’s a lot less of

Charles Barkley

to love (or dislike) these days. The former NBA star has lost 27 pounds after 10 weeks with Weight Watchers.

Charles admits that at one point he tipped the scales at 350 pounds. He had lost 41 pounds on his own before hooking up with Weight Watchers, which this week introduced a campaign called “Lose Like a Man.” Charles will be the spokesman, appearing in marketing that starts on Christmas Day.

“I felt bloated and big,” says Charles, who swore off junk food such as pizza and started eating healthy breakfasts of yogurt or oatmeal. “Now I’ve got more energy.”

He’s got a new respect for veggies, too.

“I thought vegetables were all nasty,” he says. “Weight Watchers has me eating cauliflower, Brussels sprouts and asparagus, and I really, really like it.”

What closet?


Melissa Gilbert

sat down to chat with the women of “The Talk,” co-host

Sharon Osbourne

asked the “Little House on the Prairie” star when she knew that her sister was gay. That sister,

Sara Gilbert

, is one of the show’s co-hosts and recently started dating

Linda Perry.

Sara seemed a bit nervous to hear the answer.

“You know what, I’ll put it to you this way,” Melissa said. “I took her to dinner when she was in her teens, and I sat her down, and I gave her this long speech about how much I love you, and it doesn’t matter, and you’re my darling, and blah, blah, blah, and you can tell me anything. And she looked at me and she said, ‘I’m not gay.’ And I was like, ‘OK, whatever.’

“Years later, she called me, and we were having a conversation about something, and she said, ‘You know, what if I just said that I’m gay,’ and I went, ‘And?’ I mean, I think always I kinda knew.”

Sad week for the Duggars

The stars of TLC’s “19 Kids and Counting,”

Jim Bob


Michelle Duggar

, held a memorial service this week for their 20th child, a baby girl that 45-year-old Michelle miscarried. They named the little girl

Jubilee Shalom


“We would like to thank everyone for their prayers, emails and outpouring of love,” Jim Bob wrote in a letter to fans. “As our whole family is grieving, we also know that God promises to work all things for good in our lives. Our prayer is that Jubilee’s passing will help us all realize that this life is short, and our relationship with Jesus is the most important thing. He gives us a peace in our hearts as He guides us through whatever we might face.”

On a happier note, the Duggars’ youngest daughter,


, turned 2 over the weekend. She beat the odds after being born at 25 weeks and weighing 1 1/2 pounds. “It is wonderful that she is with us and doing so well,” Jim Bob said.

Passing on Palin? Sarah Palin

’s reality series for TLC debuted to a record-breaking 5 million viewers last November. But now, it sounds like Alaska’s former governor is having a hard time getting networks to bite on a new show.

The Hollywood Reporter says Palin and uber-producer

Mark Burnett

are pitching a show focused on Palin’s husband,


, and his career as a championship snowmobile racer. But TLC has passed, and apparently A isn’t interested either. The Palins are reportedly looking for more than $1 million an episode.