WISDOM OF THE 90s by George Burns


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 Burns's latest finds the 95-year-old cigar-puffer as witty, if not quite as sharp, as ever. Burns has no complaints about his health, although since his last bestseller (All My Best Friends, 1989) he's had to have three dentists repair his bridge, has acquired a hearing aid, and has had a cataract removed. The comedian rambles this time out, with most of his humor turning on old age, forgetfulness, sex, doctors, his daily routine and bridge game at the ``Club,'' dinner dates, stage and TV appearances (he now uses a chair after the first ten minutes), and jokes (``What kind of a nut loves to watch topless dancers? A chestnut''). He also writes of adjusting his humor to advancing age and keeping it appropriate (a fiasco on French TV had him touring three different Paris nightclubs, displaying performers' bare bosoms to the home audience--``Everyone makes mistakes''), tells some of his favorite funny stories (not jokes, but stories that might have happened), and comments on actors' insecurity and how he holds back his emotions in public (``maybe I hold back too much''). Burns also gives advice about money and marriage and some signs that old age may be creeping up, suggests that ``If you really believe in something, don't let anyone talk you out of it,'' and advises, ``Don't retire.'' He looks forward to his Hundredth Birthday appearance at the London Palladium--which is already booked. Gracious and rewarding--but not as strongly focused as his last two. Maybe Burns peaked at 94.... (Black & white photographs- -not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 7th, 1991
ISBN: 0-399-13695-9
Page count: 192pp
Publisher: Putnam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 1991