Not four years ago, my father took me to see George Carlin perform his stand-up routine live as a belated birthday gift, and what a pleasure it was to see one of my favorite comedians display his considerable - and considerably crude - talents within spitting distance of my impressionable young psyche.
Even if that weren't the case, it would still be extremely sad to see Carlin go, as Reuters unfortunately reports. He appears to have passed away just last night of heart failure, at the age of 71.
Carlin had nearly thirty film and TV credits to his name, and while his most recent role happened to be in Happily N'Ever After of all things, he'll surely be more fondly remembered for his roles in Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure and Dogma, and for his numerous Emmy-nominated stand-up specials and Grammy-winning comedy albums.
Of perhaps the slightest comfort and tribute was the fact that the news of his passing had me uttering aloud one of his "Seven Dirty Words", a routine which brought him to Washington, D.C. in order to tangle with the U.S. Supreme Court back in 1978... and yet, earlier this week, the Kennedy Center offered him reason to return to the nation's capital three decades after the fact, when they were to honor him this November with their annual Mark Twain Prize for lifetime achievement in comedy.
Our thoughts go out to his loved ones. He will undoubtedly be deeply missed.