Friday Filosophy v.03.31.2023
For Friday Filosophy v.03.31.2023, our Founder, Ron Slee, shares quotes from comedian George Carlin.
George Denis Patrick Carlin (May 12, 1937 – June 22, 2008) was an American comedian, actor, author, and social critic. Regarded as one of the most important and influential stand-up comedians of all time, he was dubbed “the dean of counterculture comedians”. He was known for his black comedy and reflections on politics, the English language, psychology, religion, and taboo subjects. His “seven dirty words” routine was central to the 1978 United States Supreme Court case F.C.C. v. Pacifica Foundation, in which a 5–4 decision affirmed the government’s power to censor indecent material on public airwaves.
Carlin said that he picked up an appreciation for the effective use of the English language from his mother, though they had a difficult relationship and he often ran away from home. He grew up on West 121st Street in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of Manhattan, which he and his friends called “White Harlem” because it “sounded a lot tougher than its real name”.
Carlin joined the U.S. Air Force and trained as a radar technician. He was stationed at Barksdale Air Force Base in Bossier City, Louisiana, and began working as a disc jockey at radio station KJOE in nearby Shreveport. Labeled an “unproductive airman” by his superiors, he received a general discharge on July 29, 1957. During his time in the Air Force, he had been court-martialed three times and received many nonjudicial punishments and reprimands.
Over time, Carlin changed his routines and his appearance; he grew his hair long, sported a beard and earrings, and typically dressed in T-shirts and blue jeans. He lost some TV bookings by dressing strangely for a comedian at a time when clean-cut, well-dressed comedians were the norm.
In this period, Carlin perfected his well-known “seven dirty words” routine, which most notably appears on Class Clown. The Supreme Court upheld the FCC action by a vote of 5 to 4, ruling that the routine was “indecent but not obscene” and that the FCC had authority to prohibit such broadcasts during hours when children were likely to be among the audience. The controversy increased Carlin’s fame. George Carlin was arrested seven times for reciting the “Seven Dirty Words” routine.
Carlin was honored at the 1997 Aspen Comedy Festival with a retrospective, George Carlin: 40 Years of Comedy, hosted by Jon Stewart. His first hardcover book, Brain Droppings (1997), sold nearly 900,000 copies and spent 40 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list.
Carlin had a history of heart problems spanning three decades. This included heart attacks in 1978, 1982, and 1991; an arrhythmia requiring an ablation procedure in 2003; a significant episode of heart failure in 2005; and two angioplasties on undisclosed dates.[ On June 22, 2008, at the age of 71, he died of heart failure at Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California. His death occurred one week after his last performance at The Orleans Hotel and Casino. In accordance with his wishes, his body was cremated and his ashes were scattered in front of various New York City nightclubs and over Spofford Lake in New Hampshire, where he had attended summer camp as an adolescent.
- Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?
- ‘I am’ is reportedly the shortest sentence in the English language. Could it be that ‘I do’ is the longest sentence?
- I was thinking about how people seem to read the Bible a whole lot more as they get older; then it dawned on me – they’re cramming for their final exam.
- What does it mean to pre-board? Do you get on before you get on?
- Most people work just hard enough not to get fired and get paid just enough money not to quit.
- I went to a bookstore and asked the saleswoman, ‘Where’s the self-help section?’ She said if she told me, it would defeat the purpose.
- Atheism is a non-prophet organization.
- People who say they don’t care what people think are usually desperate to have people think they don’t care what people think.
- If it’s true that our species is alone in the universe, then I’d have to say the universe aimed rather low and settled for very little.
- One tequila, two tequila, three tequila, floor.
- The main reason Santa is so jolly is because he knows where all the bad girls live.
- Electricity is really just organized lightning.
- I recently went to a new doctor and noticed he was located in something called the Professional Building. I felt better right away.
- You know the good part about all those executions in Texas? Fewer Texans.
- I have as much authority as the Pope, I just don’t have as many people who believe it.
- I’m always relieved when someone is delivering a eulogy and I realize I’m listening to it.
- Standing ovations have become far too commonplace. What we need are ovations where the audience members all punch and kick one another.
- In comic strips, the person on the left always speaks first.
- When someone is impatient and says, ‘I haven’t got all day,’ I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day?
- Not only do I not know what’s going on, I wouldn’t know what to do about it if I did.
The Time is Now.