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  1. I haven’t got a Cadillac. I’ve got a subway token.
  2. Divorces are getting so common that a woman I know doesn’t bother getting a new marriage license. They just punch her old one and give her a transfer. You can’t teach an old dog new tricks — so she keeps changing dogs.
  3. I’ve always had the ability to manipulate words and communicate ideas and thoughts.
  4. Truck drivers stop me and say, ‘What is the poem for the day?’ or ‘Give me a poem for my girl.’ I have one on almost every subject.
  5. In all my years in show business — on stage, clubs and TV shows — my audience has been 75 percent white. In Las Vegas and Atlantic City I look out at the crowd and only see a few black faces here and there. But I can’t allow myself to be conscious of the race factor. I couldn’t perform my best under those conditions.
  6. Game shows are like golf and tennis are for some men. It’s not like going to work.
  7. I’m living the life of liberty, happiness and pursuit.
  8. New York can be any city it wants to be.
  9. Many times good actors I have known in New York accept series. I tune in at the beginning of the new season and think ‘He’s really working.’ But six months later, if I tune in again, the actor is on a treadmill, grinding it out as best he can, and he can’t help it.
  10. If the social evolution leads to jokes, I use them.
  11. Word games are very easy for me.
  12. Some college athletes don’t want to turn pro, they don’t want to take the cut in pay.
  13. America is the only place in the world where you can work in an Arab home in a Scandinavian neighborhood and find a Puerto Rican baby eating matzo balls with chopsticks.
  14. There’s no money in television, but TV provides the wherewithal to get the dollars for live performances.
  15. I was so scared the first time I flew the flight attendant called me Whitey.
  16. I start with the joke line and write backward.
  17. Six good guest shots on top shows during one season are more than enough and any producer who wants to make me happy could offer some floating guest dates for discussion and panel shows. It’s generally agreed that I love to talk, so shows of this kind are right down my alley.
  18. My mother just liked the way the name Nipsey sounded.
  19. I talk about things that are front page news.
  20. I used to say, ‘We’ve always had integration in the South… we just want it now in the daytime.



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