Picks and Pans Review: The World According to George Hamilton

updated 10/20/2008 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 10/20/2008 AT 01:00 AM EDT

• In a new memoir, the eternally bronzed actor, 69, looks back on the swath he's cut through Hollywood and ponders the meaning of life. He shares with PEOPLE's Maureen Harrington.

ON ELIZABETH TAYLOR
The most fun in the world. But when I was seeing her, she did make me wait one night while she wrote a thank-you note. I told her I was out of there. She was used to men catering to her.

ON LAUGHING AT HIMSELF
What does a life mean? Not a hill of beans—that's from Casablanca. As you get older, it's how you do it that makes the difference. I don't get taking yourself so seriously. I always think, "Aren't I foolish?" I'm the brunt of the joke and I love it.

ON THE TAN
It's all natural, baby. I tan the original way. It seems less like cheating, somehow.

ON DOMESTICITY
I learned to cook. I fix myself a tray with a bud vase, a napkin in a ring. I play it as an actor: If I was playing a butler, how would I serve me best?

ON DANCING WITH THE STARS
I had a team to take care of me. They worked on me like an Indy car. They thought, he's the oldest one in captivity—one tusk, but he's there.

ON WEALTH
My epitaph should read, "Being of sound mind, he spent it all."

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