Gems out of the mouthy mouth of comedian Joan Rivers, who died Thursday at 81, from The Kansas City Star’s files:
1966: “I love being on (Johnny Carson’s ‘Tonight’) show. … I just did Omaha, and some guy gave me all these steaks for Johnny and I was supposed to keep them all for him. You know, dozens of steaks so Johnny could mention so-and-so’s steakhouse or whatever it was. Wouldn’t you think that guy would have given me one steak? Or maybe even a lamb chop?”
1969: “Five years ago, I was writing for Zsa Zsa Gabor and Phyllis Diller and Bob Newhart. I wrote some sketches for Topo, the mouse for the (Ed) Sullivan show. I was an idea girl for ‘Candid Camera.’ Then I decided to write for myself and I was starving in Greenwich Village. Until I did one shot on the Carson show. That did it.”
1972: “Everybody’s moving out here (to Los Angeles). Look at Johnny Carson. (Husband) Edgar (Rosenberg) says I’ll love it, and I probably will. Edgar’s the smartest man I ever met in my life. I yell but he’s always right.
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“He’s a great, lovely Englishman. We met when he hired me to write a movie script, and that was it. We wrote a script … for life. We were married four days later and we’ve now been married, happily, happily, seven years.”
1978: “The last time I made a major appearance on TV was four years ago, when I guested on ‘The Carol Burnett Show,’ and then realized that in those seven minutes I had given away material it had taken me months to write, and all I had accomplished, perhaps, was giving people a chance to say, ‘Wasn’t that a good ‘Carol Burnett Show’? It didn’t make sense.”
1983: “I’m a feminist in the sense that my whole life I never thought about anything. I wanted to go out and do something and I did it. I came from a family that never thought about it. If I’d told my parents I wanted to be Albert Einstein, they would have said, ‘Fine, terrific.’ But I don’t help women because they’re women, I help whoever’s good. If you’re good, you’re good, and deserve to get ahead.”
1984: “In my heart I’ve always been nice to people, and so has my husband. … I take a lot of credit (for Elizabeth Taylor, a frequent Rivers target, losing weight). And do you know something? She sent Edgar flowers in the hospital (when he’d undergone heart surgery). Isn’t that classy?”
2000: “At this age, truly, what are they going to do to me? They’ve done it all. What, they’re going to take away a TV show? They’ve done it twice. What, they’re going to say she’s unemployable? They’ve done it three times. So (forget) them. I’m going to say what I really think.”
| Tim Engle, firstname.lastname@example.org