This item is not eligible for coupon offers.

Still Foolin' 'Em: Where I've Been, Where I'm Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys?

Still Foolin' 'Em: Where I've Been, Where I'm Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys?

by Billy Crystal


$6.98 $28.00 Save 75% Current price is $6.98, Original price is $28. You Save 75%. View All Available Formats & Editions
Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for guaranteed delivery by Friday, October 18


Hilarious and heartfelt observations on aging from one of America's favorite comedians as he turns 65, and a look back at a remarkable career in this New York Times bestseller.

Billy Crystal is turning 65, and he's not happy about it. With his trademark wit and heart, he outlines the absurdities and challenges that come with growing old, from insomnia to memory loss to leaving dinners with half your meal on your shirt. In humorous chapters like "Buying the Plot" and "Nodding Off," Crystal not only catalogues his physical gripes, but offers a road map to his 77 million fellow baby boomers who are arriving at this milestone age with him. He also looks back at the most powerful and memorable moments of his long and storied life, from entertaining his relatives as a kid in Long Beach, Long Island, his years doing stand-up in the Village, up through his legendary stint at Saturday Night Live, When Harry Met Sally, and his long run as host of the Academy Awards. Readers get a front-row seat to his one-day career with the New York Yankees (he was the first player to ever "test positive for Maalox"), his love affair with Sophia Loren, and his enduring friendships with several of his idols, including Mickey Mantle and Muhammad Ali. He lends a light touch to more serious topics like religion ("the aging friends I know have turned to the Holy Trinity: Advil, bourbon, and Prozac"), grandparenting, and, of course, dentistry. As wise and poignant as they are funny, Crystal's reflections are an unforgettable look at an extraordinary life well lived.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780594574491
Publisher: Holt, Henry & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 09/10/2013
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 157,209
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Billy Crystal has starred in dozens of hit films, among them When Harry Met Sally, City Slickers, The Princess Bride, and Analyze This. He is the author of the Tony award-winning play 700 Sundays, about his relationship with his late father, which was later adapted into a book. Crystal was a cast member of Saturday Night Live, and has hosted the Academy Awards numerous times. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife.

Read an Excerpt

Celebrate Your Birthdays

Honestly, my mom always made me feel special on my birthday, March 14. When I was a young boy, she used to wake me up at the exact time I was born: 7:36 A.M. As I grew older and moved out of the house, it became the phone call at 7:36 A.M. Even after I got married and had kids of my own, I always woke up looking forward to her call—it started the day off on the right foot. I put that tradition into City Slickers, with Jayne Meadows’s voice playing my mom on the other end of the line. Mom’s been gone since 2001, but come March 14, I still get up early and look at the alarm clock, and at 7:36, in my mind I hear the phone ring. Her call always ended with her saying, “Do something special.” I didn’t even mind that she called collect.

The most special thing I ever did on my birthday was when my life’s dream came true: I got to play for the New York Yankees.

In 2007, I was in Costa Rica for Christmas vacation and could feel my birthday looming. I was anxious about turning sixty — it felt like a huge number. Derek Jeter happened to be at our hotel. I’d known Derek since his rookie year, and we’d become friends. I told Derek I was going to be sixty and was a little freaked out about it. Jeter asked, “If you could do one thing to make yourself happy, what would it be? You should do something special.” Somewhere, my mom was smiling.


I knew my answer to Jeter’s question right away. When Joe Torre was the Yankees’ manager, he had let me work out with the team many times, even before World Series games. Joe and I were very close friends, and he not only knew I could handle myself on the field but thought my presence might even relax the guys. Infield practice was the most fun. I was still a good player, having been an outstanding (if I say so myself ) high school second baseman and shortstop, and had played in leagues in New York and Los Angeles into my forties. My skills, though hardly professional, were solid. I still take batting practice regularly in a cage at home, and every morning my gym workout ends with a “catch.” Turning double plays with Jeter on the historic infield of old Yankee Stadium was an enormous thrill. I wanted to do it again—this time, for real.

I came up with a plan where I would get one at bat in a spring training game. Whatever happens, happens, and I then announce my retirement and throw the team a party. Jeter loved the idea, and a few weeks before my sixtieth birthday, he and George Steinbrenner, Lonn Trost, Randy Levine, Brian Cashman, Bud Selig, and Major League Baseball gave me the greatest birthday gift ever: the Yankees would sign me to a one-day contract, and I would play against the Pittsburgh Pirates in a spring training game in Tampa. The game was on March 13, 2008, the day before my sixtieth birthday.

The official contract was for $4 million! But the nice part was that the Yankees gave me three days to come up with the money. We worked it out so that I would be the DH—designated Hebrew. Even though I wasn’t going to be in the field, I needed to prepare. As you get older, there’s a fine line between getting a walk and just wandering away from the batter’s box. So I went into training.

Reggie Smith, the former great player who’d trained my “Maris and Mantle” — Barry Pepper and Thomas Jane— for  61*, has a baseball academy in Encino, California. He is a great teacher, and a better man. When I told him what was happening, he was almost as excited as I was. We didn’t have a lot of time, but every day I worked on my swing with Reggie and his son (also a great teacher), against live pitching. As I left the West Coast for this great moment—accompanied by my good pal Robin Williams and some dear friends from high school — I was hitting eighty-five-mile-per-hour fastballs and felt as ready as a fifty-nine-year-old comedian can feel as he’s about to play for the New York Yankees.


Trivia freaks will know that I was the oldest person ever to play for the Yankees, and the first player ever to test positive for Maalox. I actually did have to undergo routine testing. When they asked me for blood and urine, I gave them my underwear. The day before the game, I met with Yankee manager Joe Girardi. He wanted me to lead off and play left field. I said that was too far to run. We agreed that I would lead off and DH and have just the one at bat. Joe wanted me to score a run if I could. I wasn’t sure (again, that’s a long way to run), so we agreed that if I did get on base, Johnny Damon would pinch-run for me. It would be more theatrical, so to speak. I signed my contract with Lonn Trost and Jean Afterman and went and got dressed in the clubhouse. I knew most of the guys in there and had been in the clubhouse many times, but this felt unreal — I was one of them. In a strange way, I was very relaxed about it. It was so natural for me to wait until everyone had left the clubhouse so I could take off my clothes and put on my uniform. Just like high school gym class.

The team was on a road trip, and I spent that day working out with Derek and José Molina, who’d stayed back in Tampa. I took batting practice with Jeter and José while a small crowd and many camera crews looked on. I was on my game, hitting line drive after line drive. I know I shocked everyone, which was a great feeling. But I was in great shape and ready. Tino Martinez was throwing me sixty-mile-per-hour fastballs while Janice videotaped from a distance. Derek saw her and motioned for her to come over by him at the cage. She whispered to him, “How fast is Tino throwing?”

“One-oh-seven,” Derek whispered back.


I couldn’t sleep that night. It was really happening. I arrived at the park early the next morning. Girardi met me and we hung out a little, and to this day I can’t thank him enough for welcoming me the way he did. This was his first year with the club, and the last thing he needed was some aging leading man as his lead-off man. Yet he treated me like a ballplayer, which is what I was that day. I did my pregame stretching and conditioning drills with the club and, of course, was then ready for a nap. Batting practice was amazing. I was in the cage with Derek and Damon and Bobby Abreu and Alex Rodriguez and Jorge Posada. When the guys nodded to one another that I was okay, I was on cloud nine. The hard part was that once batting practice was over, we had about an hour and a half till game time. I could feel my sphincter tighten, as well as my lower back and hamstrings. Now it wasn’t just fun, it was really on.

I had lunch with Derek and Jorge and tried to be cool, but I was getting more and more anxious. Jorge and Derek were so easy with me. We all ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches: the same meal I always had before games in high school and all the league games I’d played in and, actually, before hosting the Oscars. After lunch I went to put my game uniform on, and that’s when the pranks started. My shoelaces were cut, so when I went to tie them, they came off in my hands. The toes on my socks were cut as well, so when I pulled them on, my foot went through. I took it all in good stride, trying to act like nothing bothered me, as I knew the guys were watching. I was careful putting on my cup, as the fear of hot sauce loomed. The pranks continued — my hat switched with one that didn’t fit, my glove missing, a belt with no holes — until it was time to go to the dugout.

The stands were full as I bounded onto the field with the team to loosen up. A big roar from the crowd made me feel great, until I realized that A-Rod and Jeter were standing next to me. The national anthem was played, and I had a tear in my eye as I looked into the stands to see my brothers, Joel and Rip, and my daughter Jenny, and of course Janice. Mike Mussina threw a perfect first inning, and then I was up. When the announcer introduced me with “Leading off for the Yankees, the designated hitter, number 60, Billy Crystal,” I just about lost it. Since I’d been a kid, playing with my dad, brothers, or friends, I’d always dreamed of this moment, and now it was real. The crowd gave me a tremendous hand as I left the on-deck circle. “Hack,” (meaning swing) said Jeter, patting me on the helmet.

The Pirates’ pitcher was Paul Maholm: six foot two, 220 pounds, from Mississippi. Never been to a Seder. I was nervous, but the one thing I was not nervous about was getting hit by a pitch. It never entered my mind. If Maholm hit me, I’d sue. You ever see a Jew get hit by a pitch? They get plunked in the leg and they grab their neck. Whiplash! Once I’d found out the date of the game, I’d gone to the Pirates’ website to see who’d be pitching. I’d then watched Maholm strike out Barry Bonds. A real confidence builder. I studied his motion and his release point and tried to visualize what hitting off him would be like. As I approached the plate, the ump greeted me, as did the Pirates’ catcher. I watched Maholm’s warm-up pitches, looking for the release point I had seen on the website, and told myself,  I can do this.

“Play ball!”

I stepped in. Since 1956, from the time I had seen Mickey Mantle play in the first game at the stadium I’d gone to, I had wanted to be a Yankee.

So there I am in the batter’s box fifty-two years after that first game, my heart beating into the NY logo on my chest. Maholm is staring in for the sign, and I’m staring back, trying to look like I belong. Here comes the first pitch: ninety-two miles an hour. Ball one. I never see it, but it sounds outside. The ball makes a powerful thud in the catcher’s glove. I want to say, “Holy s__t,” but I act like I see one of those every day. In fact, I do: on TV, not in the F___ING BATTER’S BOX. The count is 1 and 0. He comes in with a fastball, a little up and away, and I hit a screaming line drive down the first base line, which means I didn’t hit it that hard but I’m screaming, “I hit it! I hit it!” Someone yells, “DOUBLE!” Which would be tough because I can’t run like I used to and on my way to second base I’d have to stop twice to pee. The last time a Jew my age ran that fast, the caterer was closing down the buffet.

But I’m still thinking double. The ump is thinking, Foul ball. I had made contact with a major league fastball. Okay, 1 and 1. Ball inside, 2 and 1, and another ball and it’s 3 and 1. I’m this close to getting to first base, just like at my prom. I look over, and Derek Jeter is in the on-deck circle yelling, “Swing, swing!”

The windup, the pitch. It’s a cutter. The nastiest cutter I’ve seen since my bris. But I swing and miss. The first time I’ve swung and missed in two days at Tampa. Now it’s 3 and 2. The crowd stands up. This is my only shot, my only at bat. Ever. Maholm winds, I look to the release point, and there it is: eighty-nine miles per hour, a cut fastball, the same pitch he threw to that obstructer of justice Barry Bonds. I swing over it. Strike three. I’m out of there.

I head back to the bench, but before I do, I check with the ump: “Strike?” He shakes his head no: low and inside. I’m so mad I missed it, and also mad I didn’t take the pitch, that I almost don’t hear the crowd standing and cheering. The guys are giving me high fives. Girardi hugs me, then Kevin Long, the great hitting coach, and then Jorge. Then, for the first time in baseball history, they stop the game and give the batter a ball for striking out. A-Rod hands it to me, saying, “Great at bat!” My teammates greet me as if I’ve just hit a home run. Mariano Rivera hugs me, and others keep saying the same thing:

“Six pitches, man, you saw six pitches!”

I sit with Yogi Berra and Ron Guidry for a few innings, and if that isn’t cool enough, I’m asked to come up to Mr. Steinbrenner’s office. In full uniform I walk into the boss’s lair. He gives me a big hug and then says with a straight face that I’ve been traded for Jerry Seinfeld.

Excerpted from STILL FOOLIN’ ‘EM: Where I’ve Been, Where I’m Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys? by Billy Crystal. Copyright © 2013 by Jennilind LLC. All rights reserved.

Table of Contents

65 Is Not 60 9

I Worry 15

Sex 23

Growing Up Crystal 29

Count to Ten 55

My Twenties 64

The Elbow 115

Take Care of Your Teeth 126

My Thirties 133

The Five Stages of Forgetting Things 181

Conservative 182

Iron Balls - My Forties 199

Kiss Me Twice 280

Still Foolin' 'Em 287

My Fifties 301

Grandpa 358

Celebrate Your Birthdays 373

Let Him Go 387

Can't Take It with You 398

Buying the Plot 411

Epilogue 425

Acknowledgments 427

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

Still Foolin' 'Em: Where I've Been, Where I'm Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys? 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 103 reviews.
JBecker55 More than 1 year ago
Billy Crystal is one of my all-time favorite comedic actors. There isn’t one of his movies that I haven’t enjoyed. I was surprised at what a great talent he has as an author. His book on aging is to die for. I haven’t laughed so hard from a book in a long time.
HopeLife More than 1 year ago
Billy Crystal never ceases to amaze. We know that he is a brilliant stand-up comic. We know he is a gifted actor. Now he proves himself as a superb author. His book is filled with wit and humor about his personal aging process. At times I laughed so hard it brought tears to my eyes. Billy Crystal is surly a man of many talents.
BenGoldwin More than 1 year ago
Still Foolin Em is a book rich with Billy Crystal’s trademark humor. Every page is a delight. Here, Crystal talks about getting old and finds the humor in it. A splendid memoir to say the least.
BagelsRule1 More than 1 year ago
I am still smiling after finishing this great book, I didn't want it to end. Funny, poignant, as good as his show 700 Sundays. Billy Crystal is a treasure. My husband is planning on reading it next since he also grew up in Long Beach. They way he writes about his family and other actors is so touching. Being a Yankee fan myself I especially enjoyed the chapters dedicated to his day playjng with the team. I hope he continues to write more books and also host the Oscars.
mcduff1495 More than 1 year ago
I'm still reading this book, but last night I read the first 3 chapters when I went to bed and finally had to stop reading because I was laughing so hard I couldn't see the writing. I would like to get the audio book, but only if Billy reads it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I so wanted to give this book 5 stars, but just couldn't. The sections about aging are hysterical and he really knows how to make one laugh about the things that we Boomers know are coming or have arrived. If you are Jewish, or enjoy Jewish humor it is even more funny since Billy is very much in the tradition of the great Borsht Belt comedians, many of which he knew such as Sid Ceasar. Sadly this type of humor is on the wane because the tough times that Billy came from are no longer there for guys like Mel Brooks or Carl Reiner to start out in and use as the basis of the laughs we expect from that type of comedy. I think this book also gets 5 stars for getting a glimpse into some of the great movies and TV shows of all time that Bill was either associated with or friends with people who starred in them and let's face it, when the Jewish guy wins America's former sweetheart in When Harry Met Sally, who can complain? So, his anecdotes about so many people that tickled our funny bone really also make this a great book. There are many parts that also had me falling off my seat with laughter and that too gets 5 stars. But, what takes it down to 4 stars is while I am saddened and can relate to Billy's losses of friends and family over the years, he has been a big shot star for so long that he has forgotten what it is like for the rest of us when he writes. I don't want to to say that he he dwells on his self importance, but between the name dropping, telling you about watching movies with the President, playing for the Yankees, and all of his award and his endless "friends" in the business it gets a bit tedious, sort of a "look at me I made it and I am now so important" kind of thing. I mean his holiday card list has to have 500 names on it if you can believe all these famous people are his "friends." And yes Billy, we get it too, you have a perfect little family now and you can send the kid to Northwestern and not consider tuition, but some of us can't and so a little humble pie thrown in would have made this a 5 star. So, please Billy make this one it, we can only kvell so much over your glorious life with all your great buddies so much.
Sicilian More than 1 year ago
I stopped reading this book after the first chapter. This is not the Billy Crystal that the public knows. This man is someone who uses the F word repeatedly. I've put down other books for that same reason as well. The old adage of if you can't say or complete a sentence without using profanity means you have very little English skills. Billy's idea of sharing intimate details of his life just doesn't equate to the public persona he has trained us to know and love. I was very disappointed since I've always loved his work.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it! Laugh out loud funny, tender and candid.
EJW More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed "Still Fooling Them" because it was a light and easy book to read with out doing any thinking. Crystal gives a short basic story of his life from his young child hood until now in his 60's. While fun to read it would have been better if he did not do so much name dropping of famous people who adored him and making himself so self important to them and to his industry. Like many comics Crystal seems to have an odd combination of low self esteem and a large ego. If your a Chrystal fan buy it and enjoy, if not skip it and save the money.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Billy is a great actor, comedian, and an incredibly funny man who appreciates the little things in life and loves sharing it with others!! What a terrific sense of humor, very refreshing!!
dshazam More than 1 year ago
Book was very entertaining at times; however, he did seem to lose some flow when he skips around the time periods of the events in his life.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fun read that will have you laughing out loud! I plan on giving copies to friends this holiday season.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
After the first chapter...just a self pat on the back
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved the book. It's funny and serious and Billy has a winderful way of telling his story. He is so real and honest and I connect to everything he says.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very funny. I plan to buy a copy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read and reread 700 Sunday's, which I love, so I HAD to read this as well. This was equally as good. I laughed so hard I couldn't see through the tears.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I started listening to Billy Crystal's audio book in my car, on my way to work today. I am wondering if there will soon be warnings and disclaimers suggestiing not to eat or listen to certain books while driving. I genuinely think aspirating breakfast/tearful laughter while driving, might be as distracting as texting while driving. ( I never saw that one joke coming.) But it definitely is a great way to start the day. I felt like my students laughed more. Maybe I should always have a comedy warm up prior to class. Please keep writing Mr. Crystal.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Moves his tounge around in your mouth
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
sp61 More than 1 year ago
Nothing earth shattering or newsworthy but a fast easy read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago