Saturday, June 28, 2008

Well, it's been a saddening couple of weeks. Two of my heroes died. Tim Russert and George Carlin. Even though they took different weapons, they were attacking the same problems.

I have heard people suggest that Carlin wasn't funny...that he was just an angry old guy who liked to yell into a microphone. Not true.

George Carlin attacked the establishment, and did so in a way only a handful of people pulled off. He didn't laugh at you. He invited you to laugh at everyone else with him. He asked you questions that, while funny, were intended to make you try to figure things out. All good comedians take you along for the ride rather than just talking to you for a little while.

I heard a few of his acts, starting with his attack on euphemisms when I was younger. I laughed. But he was right. He had a talent for making people burst into laughter then, while holding their ribs and rolling on the floor, turn to the person next to them and say "He's so right."

When I heard the bit about the difference between dogs and cats, I couldn't stop laughing. If you own a dog, and you heard the part about breaking things in the house, then looking guilty, you know what I meant about laughing so hard while saying, "That's so true!"

From an insignificant but huge fan, we'll miss you George.

More on Tim Russert tomorrow. It only seems appropriate to talk about Russert on a Sunday morning.

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