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Last words by George Carlin – Brief Remarks

Posted by Raul Barral Tamayo en Jueves, 15 de enero, 2015


As one of America’s preeminent comedic voices, George Carlin saw it all throughout his extraordinary fifty-year career and made fun of most of it. Last Words is the story of the man behind some of the most seminal comedy of the last half century, blending his signature acerbic humor with never-before-told stories from his own life.

Carlin’s early conflicts, his long struggle with substance abuse, his turbulent relationships with his family, and his triumphs over catastrophic setbacks all fueled the unique comedic worldview he brought to the stage. From the heights of stardom to the low points few knew about, Last Words is told with the same razor-sharp honesty that made Carlin one of the best-loved comedians in American history.

George Denis Patrick Carlin appeared no more than 130 Tonight shows, starred in an unprecedented fourteen HBO Specials, hosted the first Saturday Night Live, and penned three New York Times bestselling books. A few days before his death, Carlin was named the eleventh recipient of The Kennedy Center Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.

Tony Hendra was recently describe by The Independent of London as “one of the most brilliant comic talents of the post-war period”. He began his comic career with Graham Chapman of Monty Python, appeared nine times on The Ed Sullivan Show, was an original editor of National Lampoon, and starred in This is Spinal Tap.

Comments extracted from the book, they could be right or wrong, you decide for yourself:

  • I have this real moron thing I do? It´s called thinking.
  • It’s called the American Dream because to believe it, you have to be ASLEEP!
  • Part of my mother´s strategy for advancing her life-agenda and realizing her material dreams demanded careful control of the development of her children.
  • I’ll never forget the moment when I made my mother laugh for the first time. That I actually took an idea and twisted it and she laughed. How magic that was, the power it gave me.
  • Traditional Freudians might attribute my chronic need for attention to the fact that I had no father and half a mother. Naaah. The truth was much simpler. Then as now, I was a consumate show-off.
  • Making faces had the same silent power. I was gifted with a rubbery face and took pride in contorting it in the most revolting ways.
  • The exciting thing was the discovery that I could create funny dialogue for these characters and voices. Plenty of people can do imitations. The real power is in making up stuff for your impressions to say.
  • The most exciting thing of all was to try this stuff on my mother and have it work.
  • Weird how the military touches so many aspects of your life. It’s like the Church in that way. You hate it but it forms you. It’s a parent. Mother Church and Father Military.
  • A large part of the United States goverment is the United States military, whose business is war. so the military is tellins us how to feel about war -so they can stay in business. Something is fucked up here.
  • The most important milestone in my early career was meeting Jack Burns at WEZE in Boston in 1959.
  • Stage One: radio as a way into show business. Stage Two: become a comedian, like the comedians I’d listened to on the radio as a boy. Stage Three: achieve fame as a comedian and take possesion of the ultimate dream: movie stardom.
  • There was a lot I didn’t know at the time or realize. I was getting too busy too quickly. Or perhaps I didn’t want to know or realize. Marijuana can do that for you.
  • I’m alway open to change but I need to have it happen in a natural, organic, timely fashion. I always say that everything in nature works very, very slowly.
  • Fuck the drug war. Dropping acid was a profound turning point for me, a seminal experience. I make no apologies for it. More people should do acid. It should be sold over the counter. Acid finally moved me from one place to the other; allowed change to take place. Suddenly all the conflict that had been tormenting me between the alternative values and straight values began to resolve.
  • The Violence of the Left is symbolic, the injuries are not intended. The Violence of the Right is real -directed at people, designed to cause injuries. The violence from the Right is aimed directly at people and the violence from the Left is aimed at institutions and symbols. Take that, you cocksucker.
  • I would no longer deal with subjects that were expected of me, in ways which had been determined by others. I would determine the ways. My own experiences would be the subject. I went into myself, I discovered my own voice and I found it authentic.
  • I do love words.
  • Lily Tomlin: “I worry about being a success in a mediocre world”.
  • My rejection of the older generation’s notions of values and authority were by now complete. Your values suck, I reject your inherent authority, I don’t buy that authority comes on a direct line from God to my parents, to my appointed church people, or to the police or to anyone else. For me, all authority comes from within. All my power comes from within me.
  • The Court was banning not just words, but ways of thinking, acting, speaking, communicating with one another. There was plenty more hypocrisy at work.
  • I used to mark my really severe drug use by the years I couldn’t remember who won the World Series.
  • Anal became cocainal.
  • Hallucinations could come not just from the drug alone, but from starving for days on end. I’d stay up as much as six days and not eat, or eat only morsels of food. Now, as we know, mystics often have visions purely from lack of food. Never did see Jesus though.
  • It’s impossible to overestimate the importante of Jerry Hamza in my career and life.
  • His father told Jerry: “I’ve been calling people cocksuckers all my life, and I never made a quarter with it!”.
  • HBO’s lack of censorship was liberating. Even in the vicious, repressive atmosphere of The Bush years, they’ve never wavered.
  • Brenda always said that I was being singled out because of what I did and said onstage.
  • The noiser the culture becomes, the strongest your voice has to be to be heard above the din.
  • The slow violence of poverty, the slow violence of untreated disease. Of unemployment, hunger, discrimination. The real violence that goes on every day, unheard, unreported, over and over multiplied a millionfold.
  • “FUCK YOU, COCKSUCKERS!” is my approach. To the world, to the leadership.
  • The problem was caused long ago by us arrogantly trying to control nature, believing we were superior to our environment.
  • Earth doesn’t need us to save it. The planet will shuck us off like a case of the crabs. The planet is fine. WE are fucked.
  • When you’re in front of an audience and you make them laugh at a new idea, you’re guiding their whole being for the moment. If a new idea slips in at that moment, it has a chance to grow.
  • No one is ever more herself or himself than when they really laugh. Their defenses are down. They are completely open.
  • The boilerplate definition of satire is taking on the mentality of your enemy and taking it to extremes in an ingenious way.
  • Most awards are just an excuse for a television show.
  • It always seemed to me that the reasons groups come together were superficial.
  • The giant puzzle: “Who the fuck am I, how did I come together? What are the parts and how do they fit?”.
  • The ideal grouping for human beings is one. With the occasional sexual visit to the lady in the next group. Temporary twosomes are fine.
  • The larger the group, the more toxic, the more of your beauty as an individual you have to surrender for the saje of group thought.
  • Bullshit is the glue of our society.
  • I love anarchy.
  • The most important lesson I’ve learned form nature, and I don’t necessarily apply it well, is balance.

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