Tuesday, July 08, 2008

In Memoriam For George Carlin

I am sorry to say that I wasn't familiar with a lot of George Carlin's material while he was alive. Like another late comedic genius, Richard Pryor, I knew him more from some of his film roles and occasional guest appearances on TV. What I did get from him in some of the routines that I did see, made me think of him as that favorite teacher or professor in school, who had a way of explaining his subject to you in a way that resonated with you like nothing or no one else ever had. He had a way of looking at the world, that seemed to make sense, that asked questions of what we were expected to know or believe, that should be the mark of any intelligent human being. We should not just blindly accept everything that "they"(i.e. religion, the media, government, etc.) tell us, just because. But be open to exploring and asking and learning, which will, hopefully in turn, make us better human beings. The mark of a great artist(regardless of their medium) is their ability, through their art, to help us see in a different way, the life around us. I would venture to say that George Carlin met that criteria. Below I'd like to share some of his art with you.

"The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers, wider Freeways , but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less, we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees but less sense, more knowledge, but less judgment, more experts, yet more problems, more medicine, but less wellness.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.

We've learned how to make a living, but not a life. We've added years to life not life to years. We've been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor. We conquered outer space but not inner space. We've done larger things, but not better things.

We've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul. We've conquered the atom, but not our prejudice. We writ e more, but learn less. We plan more, but accomplish less. We've learned to rush, but not to wait. We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but we communicate less and less.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion, big men and small character, steep profits and shallow relationships. These are the days of two incomes but more divorce, fancier houses, but broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway morality, one night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill. It is a time when there is much in the showroom window and nothing in the stockroom. A time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete...

Remember: spend some time with your loved ones, because they are not going to be around forever.

Remember, say a kind word to someone who looks up to you in awe, because that little person soon will grow up and leave your side.

Remember, to give a warm hug to the one next to you, because that is the only treasure you can give with your heart and it doesn't cost a cent.

Remember, to say, 'I love you' to your partner and your loved ones, but most of all mean it. A kiss and an embrace will mend hurt when it comes from deep inside of you.

Remember to hold hands and cherish the moment for someday that person will not be there again.

Give time to love, give time to speak! And give time to share the precious thoughts in your mind.


Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away."

"If God dropped acid, would he see people?"

"If one synchronized swimmer drowns, do the rest drown too?"

"Whose cruel idea was it for the word “Lisp” to have a “S” in it?"

“Once you leave the womb, conservatives don’t care about you..
until you reach military age.
Then you’re just what they’re looking for.
Conservatives want live babies so they can raise them
to be dead soldiers.”

"If the “black box” flight recorder is never damaged during a plane crash, why isn’t the whole damn airplane made out of that shit?"

"The most unfair thing about life is the way it ends. I mean, life is tough. It takes up a lot of your time. What do you get at the end of it? A Death! What’s that, a bonus? I think the life cycle is all backwards. You should die first, get it out of the way. Then you live in an old age home. You get kicked out when you’re too young, you get a gold watch, you go to work. You work forty years until you’re young enough to enjoy your retirement. You do drugs, alcohol, you party, you get ready for high school. You go to grade school, you become a kid, you play, you have no responsibilities, you become a little baby, you go back into the womb, you spend your last nine months floating …and you finish off as an orgasm."

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