Monday, June 23, 2008

George Carlin, 1937-2008

"Here's another question I have. How come when it's us, it's an abortion, and when it's a chicken, it's an omelette? Are we so much better than chickens all of a sudden? When did this happen, that we passed chickens in goodness. Name 6 ways we're better than chickens. See, nobody can do it! You know why? 'Cause chickens are decent people. You don't see chickens hanging around in drug gangs, do you? No, you don't see a chicken strapping some guy into a chair and hooking up his nuts to a car battery, do you? When's the last chicken you heard about come home from work and beat the shit out of his hen, huh? Doesn't happen, 'cause chickens are decent people."

-George Carlin

One of the most influential stand-up comedians of the pasty 30 years, George Carlin, died last night in California of heart failure at the age of 71.

According to Bloomberg News, Carlin went to St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica, yesterday after complaining of chest pain and died at 5:55 p.m. local time, publicist Jeff Abraham told the Associated Press.

He had a history of cardiovascular issues, including several heart attacks.

"You know something people don't talk about in public anymore? Pussy farts."

Carlin was especially noted for his political and black humor and his observations on language, psychology, and religion along with many taboo subjects. He gained prominence with such routines as "The Seven Words You Can Never Say on TV," which landed him in a Milwaukee jail. The subject of Carlin's routine in 1978 reached the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled that the FCC had the power to prohibit stations from airing profanities when children may be able to hear them.

Carlin's most recent stand-up routines were primarily focused on attacking the flaws in modern-day America. He often took on contemporary political issues in the United States and satirized the excesses of American culture.

"I don't have pet peeves, I have major psychotic fucking hatreds!"

He was considered by many to be a successor to the late Lenny Bruce and was described by Comedy Central as the second greatest stand-up comedian of all time behind Richard Pryor, and right before Lenny Bruce. He was a frequent performer and guest host on The Tonight Show during the Johnny Carson era and was the first person to host Saturday Night Live.

He is survived by his second wife, Sally Wade; his first wife, Brenda, died in 1997.

The Kennedy Center announced five days ago that Carlin was to be awarded the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.

Promising to not come in your mouth,

James "The Check's In The Mail" Comtois



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