Chaz Bono, Lacey Schwimmer, ...
Credit: Craig Sjodin/ABC

It’s pretty clear how Chaz Bono won’t be spending his evening now that he’s completed his first Cha Cha on Dancing with the Starsvisiting internet chat boards. Bono’s participation invited controversy since he’s the show’s first transgendered contestant.

“It’s a good idea for everyone to stay away from them,” Bono told reporters afterwards. “Message boards generally attract people who want to be mean-spirited.”

Bono and his partner Lacey Schwimmer — who danced at the end of the two-hour premiere — earned a 17 for their first spin under the mirror ball. “I feel great. I was feeling pretty good when I was doing it,” Bono said. “I was trying to focus on the dance, do a good job, and have fun and I think I did just that. This has been such a good experience. When I started I was like no matter what I’m going to try to enjoy every minute. Even with the nerves and everything, I just told myself to enjoy the moment.”

The famous child of Sonny and Cher, who was introduced as an author and an activist, said he “appreciated the nice things” the judges said about his footwork but admits it was kind of a blur. His knee injury was also mentioned during the show but Bono admits “nothing is really wrong with it.” (What?!? A reality show making a mountain out of a molehill?).

In fact, Bono appreciates all the intense activity, especially because of what it can do for his midsection. (During his intro package, he said, “Look at my belly. Isn’t it round and beautiful?”) “I just want to have the best time I can and stay on as long as I can and entertain,” he said afterwards. “If I can lose weight, which I have been, by doing it, that’s awesome.” — With reporting from Carrie Borzillo

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