They always use the word 'insult' with me, but I don't hurt anybody. I wouldn't be sitting here if I did. I make fun of everybody and exaggerate all our insecurities.
I don't care if the average guy on the street really knows what I'm like, as long as he knows I'm not really a mean, vicious guy. My friends and family know what I'm really like. That's what's important.
Famous people are deceptive. Deep down, they're just regular people. Like Larry King. We've been friends for forty years. He's one of the few guys I know who's really famous. One minute he's talking to the president on his cell phone, and then the next minute he's saying to me, 'Do you think we ought to give the waiter another dollar?'
I stopped smoking. But my personality I still have. I get up in the morning, and not everybody loves me, so if you want to call that a bad habit, there's that.
Sinatra had a lot of mood swings, but he was wonderful to my wife Barbara and to me. He made no bones about who he liked and who he loved, and he had this great charisma. When he walked into a room, it stopped. I've only seen that happen with Ronald Reagan.
In the 45 years I've worked in casinos, I dreamed of being honored by an organization like the American Gaming Association, especially since I don't even have a hunting license.
An insult is mean or unkind. Milton Berle called me the Sultan of Insult, and I was called the King of Insult. But the guy that gave me the best title - and I use it to this day - was Johnny Carson. He called me Mr. Warmth.
I always say, when you're onstage you can't please everybody. I'm sure there are people who may not take to what I do, but that's okay. Thank God the majority are in my corner.
Johnny Carson was a big influence on me - all of those shows I did with him over the years, like, 100 of them, they made a bit of a name for me at the time, so that part of my life was very good.
When I got out of high school, I wanted to be an actor but was getting a lot of rejections. I was getting rejected by life. My mother, God rest her soul, told me not to quit.
I have a wonderful road manager, and he travels with me. And my valet and friend travels with me. My little entourage is great, and they take good care of me.
I mean, in my - and I'm not trying to do spilled milk, but in those days it was a little - I think it was much tougher, because you got an image, and you were in a saloon. And it was tough to come out of a saloon and to get in films, and to maintain an image, you know.
After I graduated, I tried Broadway, which was difficult for me. It was tough to get a part on Broadway, so I just started talking to audiences at different social gatherings, and little by little I became Don Rickles - whatever that is.
If I have learned anything, it is to keep my wife happy by sending her lavish gifts. Other men can learn from my success and send their wives and girlfriends fresh flowers for birthdays, anniversaries, and of course, Valentine's Day.
My father was an insurance man and a small-time gambler. He was a good man, but he had an eye for the racehorses, and I saw how it used to bother my mother. I've never gambled a dime. Never, in all those years in Vegas.
Every night when I go out on stage, there's always one nagging fear in the back of my mind. I'm always afraid that somewhere out there, there is one person in the audience that I'm not going to offend!
Bob Hope was totally regimented. I go in and say a line like, 'Hi Bob' and I'd have to do it five times, and then Bob would take me to the writers to say the line different ways. He wouldn't let me ad-lib.
The young comedians always ask me, 'What's the secret for staying around?' I tell them, 'There is no secret - just stay around. Longevity is the most important thing.'
When I walk down the street in New York, I swear to God, the building constructor, the guy pounding cement and what not, will yell, 'Hey, you hockey puck!'