'George Carlin Street': It Could Happen!

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Legendary comic George Carlin, recently and beautifully memorialized by Louis C.K., started out his life in Morningside Heights. He lived on 121st Street between Amsterdam and Broadway for pretty much the entirety of his childhood, starting in the '40s, and now his fans are pushing for the city to rename that block after him. Led by comedian Kevin Bartini, the petition now has over 2,500 signatures online. Bartini, who is the "backup warmup comedian" at the Daily Show, described the idea of a new George Carlin Way as a "no-brainer."

"It's not just that he grew up there," Bartini said. "It's also that so much of his art and persona came as a direct result of living there."

Bartini got the idea for the petition while chatting with Daily Show executive producer Rory Albanese about how he lives in the same neighborhood where Carlin grew up. He started the petition the old-fashioned way, standing on the street corner and asking people to sign. He then moved it online, where it's amassed a pretty decent amount of signatures at this point.

Carlin's daughter, Kelly Carlin, a writer and performer (though not of stand-up), said she's "thrilled" about the petition.

"I know my dad loved his neighborhood deeply and you know, I think it's important that New Yorkers know where he came from," she told Runnin' Scared. Carlin and her family lived in the same building on 121st that her dad grew up in for a couple years when she was a kid in the '60s. Echoing Kevin Bartini, she noted that if you look at a lot of the other blocks named after people in New York, the proposed George Carlin Way/Street/Block is a "no-brainer."

Does Manhattan Community Board 9 think so? A rep of CB9 told us that "we just heard about it today, so we don't have any further details."

[via Gothamist]

[rgray@villagevoice.com] [@_rosiegray]

Go to Runnin' Scared for more Voice news coverage.


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8 comments
Roger Lev
Roger Lev

beautiful man-told it like it was-miss hm very much---jolly roger

Kqtny
Kqtny

A pestilence on him for a mad rogue! 'a pour'd a flagonof Rhenish on my head once. This same skull, sir, was, sir,Carlin's skull, the Corpus Christi jester.

Concerned Neighbor
Concerned Neighbor

While I admire George Carlin's career, I don't think this is a very appropriate way to honor his memory.  Carlin made his early career in large part poking fun at the congregation and school of Corpus Christi Church, which he attended as a child and which to this day still stands on 121st Street.  George Carlin was a committed Atheist.  There is nothing wrong with that: my point is not to support or denounce the idea of religion.  But out of respect to the members of the religious community at Corpus Christi--many of whom still live in the area right around 121st Street--I think it would be best to find an alternative way to honor Carlin's memory.  George Carlin seemed little tied to the Morningside Heights neighborhood later in his life.  Why brew potential conflict by pushing this this through, particularly when many members of the Catholic community in the area are opposed to it?

jay
jay

I credit that eight years of grammar school with nourishing me in a direction where I could trust myself and trust my instincts. They gave me the tools to reject my faith. They taught me to question and think for myself and to believe in my instincts to such an extent that I just said, 'This is a wonderful fairy tale they have going here, but it's not for me.' [George Carlin, in the _New York Times_ 20 August 1995, pg. 17. He attended Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx, but left during his sophomore year in 1952 and never went back to school. Before that he attended a Catholic grammar school, Corpus Christi, which he called an experimental school.]Good luck convincing said same school of this change in street name.  

a citizen
a citizen

I'm from Morningside Heights too and love telling people that I grew up in the same neighborhood as George Carlin. Sign this petition please!

Kiep99
Kiep99

That's a fantastic idea.   

joe payne
joe payne

What an awesome idea, I really hope New Yorkers fight for this. Long Live George!!!

horatio
horatio

Alas, poor Carlin! I knew him, Kqtny, a fellow of infinitejest, of most excellent fancy. He hath bore me on his back athousand times, and now how abhorr'd in my imagination it is!My gorge rises at it.

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