George Carlin's Monologue
Don Pardo V/O: Ladies and gentlemen, George
[Cheers and applause. George Carlin emerges from the
audience and heads to Home Base. But it's a videotape
of Carlin's entrance from the very first episode of
Saturday Night Live in 1975: he wears long hair, a
beard and mustache, a T-shirt under a dark suit. After
a moment, we dissolve to Carlin, live in 1984,
standing at Home Base: his hair, beard and mustache
are neatly trimmed - he wears eyeglasses, a casual
blue shirt and dark slacks. Cheers and applause
George Carlin: All right, all right, all right.
Thank you. Hey. Come on, now. [crowd finally quiets]
Let me ask you something. Who was that guy on the
tape? ... Does anybody know who that was? He sure had
a lot o' hair, I'll tell ya that. ... Yeah, I hosted,
uh, the very first Saturday Night Live -- nine years
ago -- and they told me if I did a real good job,
they'd have me back. ... So here I am and I'm really
glad that some people live up to their word.
On that first show, I did a monologue about God. And
before the show was over, by one in the morning, uh,
we had the Archbishop of New York, Cardinal Cooke, on
the phone, complaining about the monologue. Seems he
didn't think that God was a suitable subject for a
monologue. Okay in a sermon but - NOT in a monologue.
... And I didn't really say anything THAT wrong -- I
felt. I mean, all I said was, it was my feeling that
if - if you look at it real carefully, that maybe -
maybe - God isn't perfect. You know? Just maybe He's
not perfect. I mean, if He created us in His own image
and likeness, how perfect could He be, you know? ... I
mean, uh, if God created everything, I'd say He has a
serious quality control problem. ...
And I think it shows up in His work. I mean, if you
take a look at a mountain range -- they're all
crooked, they're not nicely up in a line ... they're
all different sizes, you know. Leaves, the same thing.
You can't find two leaves the same. Even fingerprints.
He can't make two fingerprints the same! He's got four
and a half billion people to work with -- He can't
make two of 'em the same. ...
Now, the reason I'm repeating these things is 'cause I
thought maybe now that I'm back, maybe we could get
the Archbishop on the phone again tonight. ... Now,
it's not the same man. Now, it's, uh, Archbishop
O'Connor. And I'm not sure about his viewing habits. I
don't know how late he stays up at night. Probably,
he's working on some really tough, serious government
problem at this time. ... You know? Well, these days,
clergyman have to devote so much time to politics that
they really don't have any time to think ... much less
- much less watch TV. [cheers and applause]
But who knows? Now, that the election is over, maybe
he's sittin' over there with Jerry Falwell, splittin'
a pizza ... readin' the Constitution and flippin' the
dial ... and, uh, maybe they'll give us a call. I told
them in the control room -- if we got a call from
Archbishop O'Connor -- please, take a number and I'll
get back to him, okay? ...
And, hey, speaking - speaking of Jerry Falwell, this
has been a strange year. 1984? We started with Orwell
and wound up with Falwell? ... Huh? I'm not really
sure how this church and state separation stuff is
gonna work out. Ah, personally, I'm in favor of the
separation of church and state. My feeling is that
either one of these institutions screws you up bad
enough on its own. ... You put them together and you
got certain death. ...
So, uh, I would like to begin the show with a prayer
tonight, if you don't mind. ... Uh, this is a little
prayer dedicated to the separation of church and
state. And I guess if they're gonna force those kids
to pray in school, they might as well have a nice
prayer like this:
Our Father who art in Heaven
And to the Republic for which it stands ...
Thy kingdom come,
One nation, indivisible
As it is in Heaven ...
Give us this day
As we forgive those
Who so proudly we hail ...
Crown Thy good
Into temptation ...
But deliver us from
[Cheers and applause]
Okay. We'll be right back.
[Even louder cheers and applause as we pull back and
dissolve to a wider shot that includes the crowd
before fading out.]