It might seem a little hypocritical for me to make a big show of a tribute for George Carlin. For several years now, I have made a good amount of fun at his expense: "Didja ever notice how some comedians who used to be really edgy and thought-provoking have started to sound more and more like Andy Rooney?" For me, there was a point in the eighties, when I stopped listening to him. This was about the time of "A Place For My Stuff." By this time I was getting my observational humor from Jerry Seinfeld and Steven Wright. George just seemed a little tired.
He had come a long way from those "Seven Words" in 1972. Over the course of a decade George went from being a champion of free speech to wondering about lost socks. I stopped watching his HBO specials, and started listening to Denis Leary and Bill Hicks. I even thought Dennis Miller was funny for a year or two back there.
But they all owed their whole schtick to George Carlin, and as time passed, I found myself returning to the wit and wisdom of Wonderful Wino, "The big sounds in the big town", and "An Evening With Wally Londo". These were my primers. I learned to curse creatively from George Carlin, and I never looked back. I followed the stream upriver to Lenny Bruce, and I know that they are, after all, just words. We give them power.
And finally, I was given this last gift of Carlin from my buddy Joe: George never referred to President Pinhead by that office. He only referred to him as "Governor", since that was the last office to which he was elected. Thanks, Joe, and thanks George.