I remember the first time I fell in love with him. I was 10 years old and he, the aging but ever-so-wise Miracle Max, was saving a young man’s life for one reason and one reason alone – true love. Ever since then, my adoration for Billy Crystal has been solidified; a man who lives by his words: “To be good, you need to believe in what you’re doing.”
In Crystal’s latest memoir, “Still Foolin’ ‘Em: Where I’ve Been, Where I’m Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys?” he demonstrates that life, even in our advancement, only remains as good as our ability to laugh.
At 65 years old and with nearly 40 years in the spotlight, you can expect this book to be full-out Crystal – sarcastic, witty, and full of love. His lengthy history in Tinseltown includes everything from comedian and actor to director and author. In the memoir, Crystal discusses his early work as well as his personal life throughout those years.
More than anything, this book moves away from the standard all-encompassing memoir and gives readers hilarious and moving stories handpicked from Crystal’s life. The book is without any absurd drama; there are no drug stints, hookers, or attempts at aged twerking. Instead, Crystal gives a real look into his everyday life in 21 stories, beginning with his 65th birthday and ending with not only finding his keys, but also celebrating his own life with the beginning of a new one – the birth of his grandchild.
Most of the memoir navigates through Crystal’s early to present years, revealing not only the business aspect of his celebrity life, but also the personal. Here, readers come to understand the importance of humor at the onset of aging and the difficult and sometimes embarrassing scenarios older people face. Some of the best stories showcasing Crystal’s road to aging includes: “Sex,” “Take Care of Your Teeth,” “The Five Stages of Forgetting Things,” “Still Foolin’ ‘Em,” and my personal favorite “Buying the Plot.”
“Still Foolin’ ‘Em” reveals two sides of Crystal: the comedian, who is frank and unapologetic, and the family man behind the humor, who is affectionate and thoughtful. Throughout the book, the most important message that Crystal offers to readers is to accept life’s troubles by using them to our advantage and, above all, never losing our ability to laugh with the lows. We conclude the work knowing Crystal is more great than good, not only because he believes in what he is doing, but we do, too.