"It was a thrill to be with Mr. Obama," White said in a phone interview, "but the big thrill was being with Bo, their dog. He's the cutest guy you've ever seen in your life. I spent a half-hour with him on my lap."
White spoke to The Huffington Post from Chicago where she is helping celebrate the 25th anniversary and grand reopening of the Museum of Broadcast Communications. The TV icon spoke candidly about her lengthy career, recent TV projects and supporting gay marriage.
You're helping celebrate the Museum of Broadcast Communications -- what is your all-time favorite broadcast moment of your own? I've been in the business for 63 years, so there's a few moments it's hard to chose between. It's a long career to try and pick one moment out of.
I can understand that. You recently had your own life-size cake. Did you happen to taste yourself? Oh no, I didn't taste myself, but it was phenomenal. It was absolutely life-size and even the chefs that made it were so thrilled with it that they couldn't stop taking pictures of it. Even the fingers and everything -- it was all cake and frosting. And the expression looked so much like me. It was mind-boggling! I go out to the kitchen to feed the dog, but that's about as much cooking as I do.
Now, you had the cake and the roast and you've also gotten a wax figure, a baby orangutan named after you, a televised birthday party -- what honor do you hope for next? I think I've been spoiled enough, don't you think? Might as well quit while I'm ahead! But I'm not going to quit, that's for sure.
You don't have your eye on any other prize? Nope. I'm having the time of my life and the fact that I'm still working -- how lucky can you get? I'm 90 years old and still able to work as much as I do. That's a privilege.
"Golden Girls" reruns are on pretty late, so I've been going to bed with you every night lately. What's it like knowing you're still being watched around the world like that? It's such -- I repeat the word privilege. How many people are lucky enough to still be able to be doing that at this point? That's just plain old good fortune. It's just wonderful.
When was the last time you caught an episode of "The Golden Girls"? Oh, it's been quite a while. I don't really get a chance. I'm working so much. I don't get a chance to watch much television, but I'm thrilled that it's still hanging in there. Right now I'm sitting in the museum and I tell you, four years ago, when Bruce DuMont came to Los Angeles and told me an idea he had about a television museum, I had no idea we'd be sitting in this beautiful building. It is just gorgeous.
What do you think Rose is up to now? Have you given that any thought? Rose? Well, I know Sue Ann Nivens is probably camped outside of some army barrack somewhere, but Rose I think would just sort of retire and not be the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I think she'd still be having a good time. Anybody who thinks that Bob Hope was her father is not the brightest you've ever seen.
You seem to be up for everything, do you draw the line anywhere? Yes, I won't have anything to do with drugs. I don't find them funny, I don't find them cute, I don't find them to laugh at. I've seen too many people get in trouble with them, so I draw the line at that kind of thing. I like bawdy humor. I love bawdy humor, but not dirty humor.
Where's the line between bawdy and dirty? Well, I mean, if a joke or humor is bawdy, it's got to be funny enough to warrant it. You can't just have it bawdy or dirty just for the sake of being that -- it's got to be funny.
What's it like being a gay icon? Oh! I didn't know I was a gay icon. I get a lot of mail -- but I don't get many bad letters -- but I got a woman the other day that was so upset with me because they said, "How do you feel about the gay marriage thing?" and my answer to that is, "I really don't care with whom you sleep, I just care what kind of a decent human being you are." I figure all the rest of it is your business and not mine. And not hers, incidentally.
Going to your TV projects, I know you're dying to have Robert Redford on "Hot In Cleveland." Who would he play? [Laughs.] Hopefully with me.
[Laughs.] And you're on "The Client List" season finale. The subject matter of that show is a little racy. Did that affect you saying "yes" to the role? Jennifer Love Hewitt and I did "The Last Valentine" together and we became great and dear friends. When she asked me to guest, I was delighted. It has nothing to do with racy or whatever; it was kind of a fun part and I did it mostly because I love Jennifer.
Do you think you'll ever rap again? No, I don't think so. I was surprised I did it once! I had a good time.
How do you keep up your energy? Just listening to you talk about all your projects is making me tired! [Laughs.] Sorry about that! I don't get tired. I have a good energy level, but I'm blessed with good health and love what I do for a living. That's a good combination. I'm a very lucky old broad.
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