Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Farewell George Carlin

George Carlin passed away Sunday night. I wanted to provide a retrospective in video, but the problem is that I try to keep this blog clean.

It took a while to find a couple really clean and funny ones. I could find plenty of clean ones and plenty of funny ones, but bits that were both were not easy to find. Here are a couple of his cleaner funny bits:


Baseball and Football:

George was an incredible commentator on our society. He was absolutely fabulous for years and years and years. He wasn't just funny; he was very insightful. I usually felt that when I listened to one of his routines, I ended up thinking even more than I laughed.

He was also really good at cursing. He didn't just throw curses out. He used them really effectively. His routines weren't about the bad words (except for his very famous one about the seven words you can't use on TV), but he used them as tools. In this way, he was very much like Lenny Bruce who also did lots of really on-point social commentary and really good cursing.

George did lots of cursing and lots of railing against conservative America, corporate America, and religion. As far as I could tell, his later years were all about these curse-laden diatribes as he became even more political than he was in his youth. Some of this stuff was funny and much of it was an important part of the discourse, but I prefer his earlier stuff. With George Carlin and Richard Pryor gone, we no longer have a really funny man from that era (the 60's and 70's) who can also enlighten us and get us to think. Chris Rock is great, but he is of a different time. I can only hope we can find others to continue the tradition that Lenny Bruce started.

Soundtrack: Etta James (At Last!), William Shatner (Has Been), Stan Kenton (Kenton on Hi-Fi)

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