It’s probably the opposite of friend Elton John’s advice. However, singer Billy Joel is clearly his own man, as not only did he enjoy what looked like a civilized lunch with wine on the table, but he also took himself off home on a scooter.
Joel, 61, seemed more than familiar with the speedy number, and felt so sure of himself that he didn’t even bother with a helmet.
His appearance comes days after fellow singer Elton John told Rolling Stone magazine that the 61-year-old needed ‘serious rehab’.
Clearly oblivious to his friend’s warning, two days ago he was seen leisurely sipping on a chilled glass of white wine with a female friend.
And yesterday he appeared to be having a ball as he laughed and chatted with friends over lunch.
And just like his last lunch, he was enjoying the outing outdoors at a local Miami eatery.
Stretching his arms out in the air, an animated Billy appeared to be regaling his pals with a humorous story.
Looking somewhat florid and weary in the face, he kept his party enthralled.
Dressed casually in a black t-shirt, cargo shorts and sandals, Billy then defiantly flexed his biceps before departing on his Vespa. Driving off he was not wearing a helmet nor any protective gear.
Speaking to Rolling Stone recently, Elton John said Billy to get serious about rehab and ‘do something better’ with his life.
He revealed that the pair cancelled many tours because of Joel’s illnesses and ‘alcoholism’.
He also said Joel should do rehab like he did it – with patients cleaning floors, not watching television.
He then went on to criticise Joel’s past attempts to stop drinking.
‘He’s going to hate me for this, but every time he goes to rehab they’ve been light,’ he said.
‘When I went to rehab, I had to clean the floors. He goes to rehab where they have TVs. I love you, Billy, and this is tough love.’
The 63-year-old also said Billy Joel’s ‘lazy’ approach to his career.
At the end of the day, he’s coasting,’ he said.
‘I always say, “Billy, can’t you write another song?” It’s either fear or laziness. It upsets me. Billy’s a conundrum. We’ve had so many cancelled tours because of illnesses and various other things, alcoholism.’
Billy did spent a month in a California rehab centre for treatment of alcohol abuse in 2005 and also spent about two weeks at a Connecticut facility in 2002.
In an interview with CNN this week, Billy shrugged off Elton’s comments.
‘I’ve worked with Elton for such a long time and I’ve enjoyed our relationship too much to let something as random as these comments change my affection for him,’ he said.
‘Elton is just being Elton.’