Hilarious and heartfelt observations on aging from one of America's favorite comedians, now that he's 65, and a look back at a remarkable career.
Billy Crystal is 65, and he's not happy about it. With his trademark wit and heart, he outlines the absurdities and challenges that come with growing old, from insomnia to memory loss to leaving dinners with half your meal on your shirt. In humorous chapters like "Buying the Plot" and "Nodding Off," Crystal not only catalogues his physical gripes, but offers a road map to his 77 million fellow baby boomers who are arriving at this milestone age with him. He also looks back at the most powerful and memorable moments of his long and storied life, from entertaining his relatives as a kid in Long Beach, Long Island, and his years doing stand-up in the Village, up through his legendary stint at Saturday Night Live, When Harry Met Sally, and his long run as host of the Academy Awards. Listeners get a front-row seat to his one-day career with the New York Yankees (he was the first player to ever "test positive for Maalox"), his love affair with Sophia Loren, and his enduring friendships with several of his idols, including Mickey Mantle and Muhammad Ali. He lends a light touch to more serious topics like religion ("the aging friends I know have turned to the Holy Trinity: Advil, bourbon, and Prozac"); grandparenting; and, of course, dentistry. As wise and poignant as they are funny, Crystal's reflections are an unforgettable look at an extraordinary life well lived. Includes a portion recorded in front of a live studio audience.
©2013 Jennilind LLC (P)2013 Macmillan Audio
Sure, I'd love to hear your story....
I hesitated at first because I really don't need a comedian, even an excellent one like Crystal, to tell me what aging feels like. This is much, much beyond that. Truly laugh out loud funny and surprisingly poignant, the decades of Billy's life are full of colorful (and often famous) characters that will fascinate you if you're acquainted with them or not. Yes, there are the old guy jokes, and they're funny, but it's when he's playing straight man to what is happening to him and around him when this book really zings. This is a book that you should NOT read on paper (or screen), but listen to performed by a master joker. Great fun.
I enjoyed this book, and as expected, I laughed out loud multiple times. I can't imagine "reading" this book when you have the opportunity to listen to Billy Crystal read it to you. Having his voice truly made all the difference and brought the laughs.
The insights into the sports figures were especially interesting and getting a peek behind the scenes of movies like When Harry Met Sally and City Slickers was a treat.
Going back and forth between Crystal reading the book and reading it live in front of an audience was a really nice touch, I especially loved that.
Because Crystal is reading it to you, it feels intimate. So occasionally he drops facts, or lines, that are surprising, like how rich he is, or how much he dislikes someone, things that were really, very honest. I loved it. I love being surprised, and I love being surprised that I'm surprised.
I recommend this book.
I very much enjoyed this book. Billy Crystal reads the book, and it is like an 8 hour performance from him. In fact, several chapters were recorded live as performances. Billy Crystal goes through his life and his loves with his unique perspective with warmth, wit and love. You'll laugh, you'll cry . . .oy vey, what else do you want?
I thought all good comedians were the product of dysfunctional families. This is a very moving (if the last chapter doesn't get the waterworks going, see a professional) and enjoyable account of a family man and entertainer that thoroughly disabused me of that notion. Mr. Crystal's loving musings about his family--whether blood relatives or lifelong friends--nearly made a convert out of this sworn single person. Now there's the kind of success anyone would envy! The narration went by so fast that I had to be on the edge of my seat not to miss a single detail, but I doubt any other reader could have done the impressions or the tender memories justice.
The audio is DEFINITELY better than hard copy would have been for this book, with Billy Crystal reading.... it was like an 8 hour AMAZING show.
He was genuine, funny, transparent. I'm not sure if I sniffled and got choked up any less than I laughed out loud. Very moving story, wonderful writing, incredible performance. Highly recommend.
Fans of Billy Crystal could not ask for more -- everything you love about Billy Crystal is here. The sensitive, sometimes cranky, occasionally outrageous, intelligent, thoughtful and always very funny comedian-actor-director shares his life with us as you'd expect him to -- honestly, lovingly and with sharp wit. Happy I bought the audiobook version since the stand-up chapters recorded before a live audience added so much to the experience.
What a great book! Funny, authentic, and much of it feels like you are in a live audience hearing it straight from the man himself. Wonderful stories about Billy Crystal, his kids, family, Ali and the Yankees. I hope he lives another 50 years, so that I can listen to him narrating the sequel.
This is a fun diversion from the history / lecture series' I normally listen to. A warm uplifting book fill with Billy's memories.
The BEST part of this book are Mr. Crystal's stories of the great Micky Mantle and Muhammad Ali. A human face is painted on these sports legends that very few have seen. The chapter on the filming of his HBO movie 61 was probably the best chapter in the book. As a youngster, my father took me to Yankee Stadium to watch these very same legends play. Tears swelled up inside.
The book also has its slow chapters. One can sense that Mr. Crystal has a preoccupation with death. He deals alot with dying which detracts from the otherwise brisk flow of the book.
This book is highly recommended,
BTW, you look marvelous
Unless you're use to people looking at you like your crazy be careful because you WILL laugh out loud. Billy Crystal has been a constant favorite of my family since Soap and continues to be with my kids. His life has been full of ups and downs just like everyone else only he doesn't run to the bottles & drugs like so many others. He has been blessed with talent, a wonderful family, and the chance to become friends with people he admired as a child and you're so happy for him. This book is light hearted, funny, and overall amazing. A MUST GET.
Billy Crystal! He gave a private performance for me as "we" walked the causeway and while "we" drove to Ft. Lauderdale for my own gig. What a delight hearing his tales in his own voice! I'm new to audio books and I haven't stopped talking about how great it was to have this book read by the author himself. I believe, especially after hearing his book, it was just like him to want us to get the full meaning of each story... that might have been lost with someone else voice. I'm in the middle of listening to it for the second time and I marvel at how pleasant his voice is and the care he put into each chapter. He wanted to get it right...and I believe...well, lol, he did!
One? ONE? That's tough...Well, one was his conversation with Charles Bronson-nothing like the exact words to get the point(s) across... Then there's his 40th birthday, and when he met his wife, and lost his father and mother...
The warmth in his voice...he is talking to you one-on-one like a friend.
Both...tears all the way around...I laughed out loud, and at many points, tears were evident -which could have been embarrassing had I not had my ear buds in-and with some of the sadder moments my eyes filled with tears and made me feel the emotions those moments were meant to share.
There's not enough time or space...just listen to it...you'll fall in love with Billy if you're not already!
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