The River's Badge

Monday, June 23, 2008

George Carlin


I guess either you loved him or hated him.

I was feeling wistful this morning, when I heard on the way to work that George had passed away.


Then, I got to work and turned on the local morning show, and the disc jockey was saying, "I never thought he was funny. Plus, he was a pr***."

This, from a DJ who revels in juvenile sexual "humor". So,take that for what it's worth.


I'm not saying that everything George did was funny, but I do remember watching some of his HBO specials with tears rolling down my face, because I was laughing so hard.

They always said that George was a liberal, but you be the judge. I searched for some of my favorite George Carlin bits on YouTube, and, of course, I wasn't able to find the exact ones I wanted, but I did find these (WARNING: Explicit Language):


CHILDREN


SOFT LANGUAGE


HAVE A NICE DAY


COMMON EXPERIENCES


SAVING THE PLANET (Thank you, George!)


Yes, bad mother that I was, I took my kids (teenagers) to see George in concert. For shame! Well, I tried to expose my kids to the better things in life. And what better example of brilliant comedy than George Carlin?

You know, it's not like they'd never heard those words before. Who are we kidding? As George said, "What about the children?" Well, believe me, those parents who are shielding their children from everything they consider "unseemly" are just kidding themselves. I tried to expose my kids to creative artists, and I include George as a prime example of one.

A couple of years ago, my kids bought me a 4-DVD set of George's HBO concerts. So I guess something stuck with them over the years.

I had a couple of George's albums early on. I had FM & AM:

I also had "Class Clown":
And, yes, that one had the "seven words", but that wasn't the funniest bit on the album. Everybody (in the press) makes such a big deal about that, but to limit George's career to simply the "seven words" really does an injustice to him.

George was a keen observer of life. He talked about all those things that we think about; those things that we find ridiculous, too. Except we can't quite put those thoughts into words the way that George was able to do.

It really kind of bugs me when entertainers I grew up with pass away. They're not supposed to do that!

Say what you will about George Carlin. If you can't get past the language, well, that's too bad. You're really missing out, then. You might wanna rethink your priorities, if that's the case. There's a lot worse things than hearing a swear word every now and then.

I can't think of a comedian who is or was his equal. At least not in my lifetime.

So, THANK YOU, GEORGE! Thanks for all the years that you made me laugh until I cried.

I hope you find a place for your stuff.





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