My dinner party with 5 famous people: #5 Joan Rivers

Last but not least, I would round out my celebrity dinner party with Joan Rivers. She might seem like an odd choice, after all, she’s known for her catty fashion criticism and overdone plastic surgery, but she still amazes me. I didn’t really appreciated Ms. Rivers until I watched the documentary, A Piece of Work. That woman works her butt off. Comedians have tough lives. It’s not easy being on the road for most of the year, getting heckled, cancelled, or made to feel irrelevant. Yes, all this is hard, but it was specially hard for a young woman in the 60s who was expected to be at home with the kids. A young woman who was told she’d never have a career because she wasn’t pretty.

In this documentary she bares it all. Her husband’s suicide, her regrets about betraying Johnny Carson, and her never ending feeling that she’s not good enough. She puts herself out there. She is so vulnerable but at the same time you realize nothing could get to her. She is absolutely fearless.

Joan Rivers and me doing a segment on The View, before we grab some lunch.

Joan Rivers and me at a booth. I’m obviously trying to get the waitress’ attention.

You watch her jump on a plane and do gigs in five different cities in 3 days. I couldn’t do that at 28. I don’t know how she can do that at 78. The whole time you watch this documentary you see a person struggling with mortality. It’s like she thinks if she does one more show she won’t be forgotten. But it works… how many other female comedians have been a household name for almost 50 years?

I love Joan because she’s sassy, and I know if she’s the first person to arrive, and I’m wearing something ugly, she’ll have the balls to tell me to change. I love her because she’s a fighter. Because she will not go softly into the night. I love her because she’s shocking and reminds us to lighten up.

I would serve her Vodka on the rocks and a wine chaser. Maybe she’ll nibble on some appetizers but I don’t see her as a big foodie. I’d sit her between Dan Savage and Sir Issac Newton. Dan and her would be hilarious, and she would have a field day making jokes about Newton’s weird behavior.



  1. Very interesting choice! Joan is a class-act and in a class of her very own. I need to catch up with dinner party guests #2, #3, and #4. Sir Isaac, very cool. This is a great blog series and you chose some intriguing folks, your dinner would be fantastic for sure. Can I bring a dessert and join the party?????


  2. and I think I am late to ask for the invitation…lol…very well written -


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