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June 23rd, 2008

George Carlin.

My father called this morning, too early for it to be good news. I only remember him saying, “Did you hear about Carlin?” I hadn’t.

George Carlin died yesterday, he was 71 years old.

Carlin was a personal hero of mine growing up, I can remember seeing his famous HBO specials even before I really should of been watching. The sharp wit, piercing observations and sarcasm all poured out of the man with a brilliant point of view that seemed so obvious, you wondered why it took Carlin to point it out to you.

TIME called and needed him photographed for a 10 Questions article. I set up hours early and waited for him to arrive in the hotel suite. I left the door closed before he arrived, I wanted to see Carlin through the peephole. He was just like you would of expected, only kinder and happier. He went into a rant about hair care products when I asked him to take his hat off, that then descended into a wonderful moment of he and I yelling the F bomb back and forth at each other till I blew the circuits to that half of our hotel room. Thankfully, I had this second shot ready to go, it was a better photograph anyway. I am so happy I blew those circuits or this image never would have happened.

It was the best assignment I ever had, it was one of my favorite people and it was one of the happiest days of my life.

March 19, 2004.

“The most unfair thing about life is the way it ends. I mean, life is tough. It takes up a lot of your time. What do you get at the end of it? A Death! What’s that, a bonus? I think the life cycle is all backwards. You should die first, get it out of the way. Then you live in an old age home. You get kicked out when you’re too young, you get a gold watch, you go to work. You work forty years until you’re young enough to enjoy your retirement. You do drugs, alcohol, you party, you get ready for high school. You go to grade school, you become a kid, you play, you have no responsibilities, you become a little baby, you go back into the womb, you spend your last nine months floating…

…and you finish off as an orgasm.” ~George Carlin