I've never cooked. I can't do much more in the kitchen than make a cup of tea and some toast.

At one time I smoked, but in 1959 I couldn't think of anything else to give up for Lent so I stopped-and I haven't had a cigarette since.

I work as often as I want and yet I'm free as a bird.

There have been people who have tried to take advantage of me. They want to be linked to me just because I'm Ethel Merman.

Once I had all the attention, all I had to do was deliver.

You gotta have a gimmick.

I am known to be able to take care of myself when I become angry. I don't mince words.

I wouldn't change one thing about my professional life, and I make it a point not to dwell on my mistakes.

Cole Porter had a worldwide reputation as a sophisticate and hedonist.

At a flea market I always head for the junk jewelry table first.

I've never suffered stage fright. That fascinates people.

I was lucky enough to have the songs in my first show written by George and Ira Gershwin. Then Cole Porter wrote five shows for me.

Broadway has been very good to me. But then, I've been very good to broadway.

Everything's coming up roses - for me.

I can hold a note as long as the Chase National Bank.

There's such a thing as theater discipline. One player doesn't appropriate another's inventions.

Mom claimed that I could carry a tune at 2 or 3 years of age. Maybe she was a little prejudiced.

I preferred delivering my performance in person. I liked to be in control. You couldn't be in films.

I Got Rhythm really put me on the map.

If I feel in need of sleep, I just open a book or turn on the television. Both are better than any sleeping pill.

The slapdash way producers used to assemble a show seems a little unbelievable when we talk about them now.

Music, in the past few years... anything singable or understandable is square.

My beloved Mom and Pop always rated tops with each other, and that's the way it will always be.

Any audience that gets a laugh out of me gets it while I'm facing them.

I was born in my parents' bedroom on January 16. The World Almanac says it was 1909. I say it was 1912. But what difference does it make as long as I feel 33?

In my case, things have pretty much been handed to me.

My father taught me to read music and play the piano-but not well, even though people have said that I'm a natural musician.

I wasn't straining at the bit to become a movie star any more than I had plotted to get out of vaudeville and into Broadway musicals.

Cole Porter wrote Anything Goes and four more hits for me.

Always give them the old fire, even when you feel like a squashed cake of ice.

Legend has it that when God created me, he gave me a big distinctive voice, a lot of boldness and no heart.

I have been ambitious to be a somebody from the time I was 5 years old.

I wouldn't trust any man as far as you can throw a piano.

I've made a wonderful living playing that theatrical character - the professional brassy dame.

Mom and Pop were proud of my popularity, but from their point of view, show business was no way to make a living.

My career at Warner Brothers consisted of one musical short subject. I was running around in a bear skin. Very chic.

I'll pat myself on the back and admit I have talent. Beyond that, I just happened to be in the right place at the right time.

Who's happy these days?

I don't like to read. The only things I read are gossip columns. If someone gives me a book, it had better have lots of pictures.

Eisenhower was my war hero and the President I admire and respect most.

I can never remember being afraid of an audience. If the audience could do better, they'd be up here on stage and I'd be out there watching them.

As far as dramas are concerned, it's considered passe for playwrights to turn out anything the average person can understand.

I'll admit - I was honored to be on the cover of Time.

Of my four marriages, the one to Bob Levitt is the only one I don't regret.

I have plenty of invitations to go places, lots to do. If I'm not working, I go to have my hair taken care of and work at needlepoint.

Christmas carols always brought tears to my eyes. I also cry at weddings. I should have cried at a couple of my own.

I attend surprisingly few shows. The type of theater that is popular today just doesn't appeal to me.

I take a breath when I have to.

When you are in deep conflict about something, sometimes the most trivial thing can tip the scales.