Tuesday, June 24, 2008

In Memoriam: George Carlin

Well, this one caught me by surprise. Beloved comedian George Carlin died this week. I'm late in reporting it because of the whirlwind past few days I've had plus a big event at work. But more on all that later. George Carlin was a groundbreaking comedian among the counter culture voices of the '60 and has been influencing young comedians ever since. His ability to question convention and mores of the day while making it side-splittingly funny indeed helped spread the causes of his generation through the voice of humor. This is the mark of a true satyirst, on a par with Oscar Wilde or Will Rogers.

I was first introduced to George Carlin by Mr. Heumer, my 7th grade social studies teacher. More on him later, too. Mr. Heumer's curriculum included all parts of social history including music, art and even humor. He brought in a recording of George Carlin's famous Baseball/Football comparison. As was quoted in his New York Times obituary:

"Baseball is a 19th-century pastoral game,” he said. “Football is a
20th-centurytechnological struggle. Baseball is played on a diamond, in a park.
The baseballpark! Football is played on a gridiron, in a stadium sometimes
called SoldierField or War Memorial Stadium.”

Way back in 7th grade George Carlin spoke to me. Anyone who would dare poke fun of two of America's most beloved and most macho institutions and make them seem completely ridiculous was my kind of guy. George Carlin was 71

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At 1:23 PM, Blogger heathandpete said...

I was terribly saddened to hear that George Carlin had passed away. He has always been my favorite comedian for the very reasons you cited. I still find myself watching old Carlin stand-up routines that run on HBO late at night. I still find myself laughing hysterically at all of his material. He will be missed. But, I will continue to watch the rich material that he has left behind.

At 9:08 PM, Blogger judy said...

We have lost one of the most brilliant and funniest minds that has ever been a part of the American culture. Along with the Baseball/Football routine, my favorite George Carlin bit of genius was "Stuff". The world is a little less funny now that he's gone, but thanks to all the recordings and videos he'll keep us laughing for years to come.

At 7:05 PM, Blogger libhom said...

I love how he poked sacred cows with sharp sticks.


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