I wrote this to someone just after he died.
The world is a lot less funnier with him gone.
Imagine him on Twitter.
I was maybe 12 when I first discovered Carlin. Just the perfect blend of raunch coupled with the most on-point command of the English language that this precocious, yet punk-ass adolescent could totally appreciate. Just as with the obsession over a new favorite band, I watched his HBO specials repeatedly, digesting every word, reciting routines and one-liners in nearly every other conversation for a good year of my life. The “Airline Safety Lecture” is still my favorite [Watch it here].
Growing up 15 minutes out of NYC, I think I saw every HBO special he did at the Beacon throughout the 90’s. I always felt like a star when a classmate would ask the Monday morning following, “Were you at the Carlin show on Saturday? Saw you on TV!” While the Beacon shows were always a thrill to see — as George was usually dropping new material, plus the excitement of it being on live television — my fondest memory was seeing him at Club Bene, an old dinner theater type joint in South Amboy, New Jersey, of all places.
Some friends and I found out he was touring months before and rushed — RUSHED! — to buy tickets the morning they went on sale…just like we did when our favorite band came to town. Turns out, the typical Central NJ Carlin fan is a bit more laxidazical when it comes to making dinner theater plans, for when we arrived at the club, they had our tickets waiting in an envelope separate from the others (seems we were the only ones that ordered in advance), and the Maitre d’ escorted us past all those who were seated and directly to the front row, just off stage right.
We take our seats. George comes on. I think he was taken aback for a second when he first saw these fresh-faced teens staring back at him, though I doubt it gave him much, if any pause in unleashing the goods. I mean, “Fuck?” We’d heard the word before… “Snapper,” however, was new…
He gets to a point in the show where he stops everything, looks down at his watch, and says, “Hey! Time for a few fart jokes!” He starts his bit about “Walking Farts,” walks over to our side of the stage, and just as he is about to demonstrate the walking/tooting action, leans down and whispers to us, “Don’t worry, boys…these aren’t real.”
Claim to fame.
For Paul P.
I feel sorry for the homeless guy. I feel really sorry for his dog, though, ‘cause you know the dog’s thinking ‘This is the longest walk ever.’
‘Does this thing have a payoff, pal? ‘Cause I could do this on my own. Really. Thanks for the leash.’
— Norm MacDonald
“Perhaps the greatest joke ever written.” — Dennis Miller
Listen to a whole hour of Dennis rap with comedic geniuses Norm MacDonald and Jason Sudeikis from Thursday’s show here.
Part of Dennis’s two weeks of guests from the cast of Saturday Night Live, past and present. It’s been really enjoyable. See the list of guests and check out some clips on http://www.dennismillerradio.com
Norm kills me every time.
The Lady, today over breakfast.