June 24, 2008

"Weather forecast for tonight: Dark" - G. Carlin

May 12, 1937 – June 22, 2008

In 1973, when I was 13, a friend of mine gave me a copy of George Carlin's "Class Clown" what a riot...we played that sucker over and over (in secret of course!). We knew George from TV a bit, but these albums hilarious! "AM/FM", "Occupation Fool", and "Toledo Window Box"...we loved them all.

Anyway, one day my Uncle came over, he seemed hip, so I asked him if he had heard George's albums yet, he said no, so I lent it to him. "Whatever you do, don't tell Mom, it's a little raunchy" I said.

Well, several months later I nearly got my ear yanked off, followed by a serious grounding. Seems good 'ol Uncle Tom had forgotten about the "don't tell Mom, it's a little raunchy" part. He was hosting a party at at the home of an old (old being the key word) family friend. At the pool party, after a few drinks, he remembered that he had a comedy record, hell, everybody loves a comedy record! The sad news was my Mom, step Dad, Grandma, and a hand-full of other bluehairs were at the party!! Mom trashed the record, and I never lent another to Uncle Tom!

Well, my love of George's work never waned, the old stuff was classic, but the stuff from the past two decades was biting, and I think spoke more to the state of humankind. George had an amazing insight, and was sometimes very caustic, but I believe underneath he had a heart of gold.

On February 5th 1997, George played here in town. We were busy building our coffeehouse, so I did not go to the show, but I did this piece of art and went to meet him backstage prior to the gig.
A very kind man, we chatted for a few minutes, he signed my work, then had to go inside.

I was very excited, and walked back to the front of the building when I saw a big bush of red hair in the crowd. Having a suspicion, I walked over, sure enough it was Carrot Top! (he grew up here in town). Anyway, he signed the art too adding "my hero", and asked if I'd do a portrait of him.

It was a very kool night even if I did never get to see George perform live.

RIP George...I'm forever a fan!

One of my favorite bits:

"Frisbeetarianism is the belief that when you die, your soul goes up on the roof and gets stuck". - George Carlin


1 comment:

Barbara(aka Layla) said...

Loved all these stories and I am sure George would love them too! How cool that you got to meet him!!! I was 13 in '73 too - those were fun times.