Joan Rivers, comedy legend, has died at age 81. Two stories from the Longreads Archive:
GROSS: So, like, that’s kind of a paradox to me that you live to be on stage and at the same time, there’s this dread of being on stage.
Ms. RIVERS: Not a dread of being on stage, a dread of not doing well, of disappointing them. I you know, I always you think I have one friend who’s a very good, very, very famous comedian, comic, who once said to me: I give them five minutes. If they don’t like me, I go on automatic.
And I thought: They have bought the tickets, they have paid for a babysitter, they have come out to see you. They want to have fun. I want them to walk out of a show and say, that’s the…
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