Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Books I'm Reading 32) Last Words by George Carlin

I was a child of the 80's but I came to become a teenager in the 1990's and just as George Carlin was getting into his greatest stride, I learned of his presence. I knew he had been around before (the hippy dippy weatherman), but the 90's was when I learned of him and thus, it's when I knew him best.

Last words was his 'memoir' a word he didn't like as it sounded too much like 'moi'. The interesting thing to me was the pacing of the autobiography and the tone. The entire tone of the book was as I know Carlin from the 90's and early 2000's, deeply thoughtful and self analytical, brutally honest and absurdly whimsical all at the same time. He had that way about his language that could disarm you. Everyone's got some childhood shit, and you get a lot of that for the first part of the book. In a way that it obvious that Carlin's rebel side formed early. You get the painful history of substance abuse as well. But neither of those is the part I really enjoyed.

He's got this section where he talks about becoming Mr. Conductor at Shining Times Station. I have to say, that small bit, above else, that gem of insight into the universal human condition of childhood, is to me the best part of the book.


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