Still laughing with George Carlin

| June 6, 2011 | 1 Reply

As George Carlin fans all know, the Grammy award-winning comedian died in 2008, shortly after completing his 2008 HBO special, “It’s Bad For Ya.” I’ve always enjoyed George Carlin’s work, which is intensely funny, yet equally serious. He had a precise grasp on what ails America, exemplified by the following brilliant routine from his 2005 special, “Life Is Worth Losing.”

While in a bookstore yesterday, I happened to pick up a copy of George Carlin’s 890 page tome, 3XCarlin: An Orgy of George (2006). I’m only on page 104, yet I found myself laughing out loud dozens of times. This is about the best $20 I’ve ever spent on a book. Here are a few of his writings, and there are many more that are equally good, even in the first 100 pages:

No I’m tired of being unable to buy clothing that doesn’t have writing and printing all over it. Insipid sayings, pseudo-wisdom, cute slogans, team logos, designer names, brands trademarks, small-business ego trips; the marketing pigs and advertising swine have turned us all into walking billboards. You see some asphalt walking by, and he’s got on a fruity dodger hat and a Hard Rock Café T-shirt. Of course you can’t see the shirt if he’s wearing his hot-shit Chicago Bulls jacket. The one that only 50-million other loser jock-sniffers own. And since this cretinous sports fan/consumer zombie is completely for sale to anyone, he rounds out his ensemble with FedEx sneakers, ValuJet socks, Wall Street Journal sweatpants, a Starbucks jockstrap, and Microsoft condom with Bill Gates head on the end of it. No one in this country owns his personal appearance anymore. America has become a nation of obedient consumers, actively participating in their own degradation.

Even some low and [restaurants] are pretentious. The menu can’t merely say “cheeseburger.” They have to get wordy. So, go along with them. When you order your food use their language. But you must look right at the waiter; no fair reading from the menu. Look him in the eye and say, “I’ll have the succulent, fresh ground, government-inspected, choice, all-beef, six-ounce patty on your own award-winning sesame-seed bun, topped with a generous slice of Wisconsin’s finest grade-a cheddar cheese made from only premium milk imported from large galvanized steel cans, having originally been extracted from a big, fat, smelly, champion blue-ribbon cow with a brain disease.”

I’ve begun worshiping the sun for a number of reasons. First of all, unlike some other gods I could mention, I can see the sun. It’s there for me every day. And the things it brings me are quite apparent all the time: heat, light, food, a lovely day. There’s no mystery, no one asks for money, I don’t have to dress up, and there’s no boring pageantry. And interestingly enough, I have found that the prayers I offer to the sun and the prayers I formerly offered to “God” are all answered at about the same 50-percent rate.

Religion presents an interesting situation. Jerry Falwell; it’s simply an absurd name for a clergyman. The last person in the world I’m going to believe has an inside track with God is some guy named Jerry. Can you imagine the supreme being, in the middle of the night, “Jerry! Wake up. I got some revelations.”

A house is just a pile of stuff with the cover on it. You can see that when you’re taking off an airplane. You look down and see all the little piles of stuff. Everybody’s got his own little pile of stuff.

Here’s another one. You’ve never been to your friend’s place of work, but you pictured it. And he changes jobs, but it’s a similar job. Do you bother to change your mental picture of where he works? By how much? Or your friend works at one Wendy’s and gets transferred to different Wendy’s. Do you picture a whole new Wendy’s? Or do you get lazy and say, “They’re all pretty much the same, so I’ll just go with the old one.”

People say, “I’m going to sleep now,” as if it were nothing. But it’s really a bizarre activity. “For the next several hours, while the sun is gone, I’m going to become unconscious, temporarily losing command over everything I know and understand. When the son returns, I will resume my life.” If you didn’t know what sleep was, and you had only seen it in a science fiction movie, you would think it was weird and tell all your friends about the movie you’d seen.

They try to blame movies and TV for violence in this country. What a load of shit. Long before there were movies and television, Americans killed millions of Indians, enslaved millions of blacks, slaughtered 700,000 of each other in the family feud, and attained the highest murder rate in history. Don’t blame Sylvester Stallone. We brought these horrifying genes with us from Europe, and then we gave them our own special twist. American know-how!

The reason for most violence against gays is that heterosexual men are forced to prove that they, themselves, are not gay. It goes like this: men in strong male subcultures like the police, the military, and sports (and a few other cesspools) bond very strongly. Hunting, fishing, and golfing friendships also produce this unnatural bonding. These guys bond and bond and get closer and closer, until finally their just drunk enough to say, “You know, I really love these guys.” And that frightens them. So they must quickly add, “but I’m not a queer!” See the dilemma? Now they have to go out of their way to prove to the world, to their buddies, and to themselves that they don’t harbor homoerotic feelings. And it’s only a short step from “I’m not a queer” to “In fact, I hate queers!” And another short step to, “Let’s go kill some queers!” And what they really seek to kill is not a queer outside; it’s a queer inside they fear.

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Category: American Culture, Humor

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich and his wife, Anne Jay, live in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where they are raising their two extraordinary daughters.

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  1. George Carlin’s brutally patriotic criticism : Dangerous Intersection | September 17, 2011

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