Too Busy to Die
Too Busy to Die
by Carl Reiner, Foreword by Judd Apatow Hardback
“Like other successful endeavors in my life, I credit my old friend, Mel Brooks... he always gives me sage advice. When I told him that I was at loose ends since completing my last book, “Carl Reiner, Now You’re Ninety-Four,” he shouted, “Start a new one and call it, ‘Too Busy To Die.’” I thought it a smashing title and hopefully,“Too Busy To Die,” will also turn out to be a smashing read.”
“Too Busy to Die” starts with that first reminiscence, then follows Carl’s earliest forays into show business, in all of which Bessie continued to tell him that “You were the best one.”
As Carl honed his dramatic skills he discovered, oft times through desperation or necessity, that his comedic skills could save the day, by merging both at every opportunity to great success.
There’s a section of short stories, mostly wacky, funny fantasy, but not all fiction. In “How Paul Robeson Saved My Life,” after being drafted into the Army where he entertained the troops as a member of Special Services, Carl had a memorable encounter with a Sergeant where he learned the power of fighting bigotry with humor.
There is the poignant story of the last time Carl saw his brother Charlie, who was very sick at the time, but managed to attend the Mark Twain Awards in Washington, D.C. honoring Carl. After the ceremony they were introduced to President Bill Clinton and Charlie, who had received the Bronze Star for his participation in the invasion of Normandy, spent a good amount of one-on-one time with President Clinton, discussing his wartime experiences. A high point for both Charlie and Carl.
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