NEW YORK Lucky Don Rickles: The Friars Club holds a night in his honor and everyone plays nice.
Robert De Niro, who appeared with Rickles in "Casino," joked that he was sure the 87-year-old comedian had died and Monday's gathering at the Waldorf Astoria was actually a memorial. In fact, it was a tribute to the man known as "Mr. Warmth," who received a lifetime achievement award from the Friars.
Bob Newhart, Joan Rivers and Louis CK were among the comics praising him. Natalie Cole, John Mayer and Diana Krall sang for him.
Rickles, of course, had insults prepared. He told Krall that her husband, Elvis Costello, was the "real star" of the couple. Lewis Black was likely "to die young." As for Rickles himself: "I'm standing here, barely."