George Carlin: The Ultimate Influencer

Influencer Marketing Hub defines an “influencer” as someone who has:

  • the power to affect the purchasing decisions of others because of his or her authority, knowledge, position, or relationship with his or her audience.
  • a following in a distinct niche, with whom he or she actively engages. The size of the following depends on the size of his or her topic of the niche.

Based upon this definition, I’d have to say that George Carlin was and still is a great influencer. In my opinion, he was and is the ultimate influencer. Even after his death in 2008 (His wife died early in 2008 and he followed her, dying in July 2008), his influence continues to this day as videos of his many stand-up comedy performances and late-night television interviews live on across social media. There’s even a Carlin’s Corner channel on SiriusXM.

Carlin was an American stand-up comedian, actor, author, singer, voice artist, and comedian, noted especially for his irreverent attitude and his observations on politics, language, psychology, and religion, as well as some taboo subjects. I always find it interesting when I watch one of his routines from 15–20 years ago and knowing what we know now, it’s uncanny how spot-on he was in his comments.

The following was a written piece by George Carlin that popped up this morning in my Facebook Memories. I had first read it and shared it several years ago. After reading it again this morning, I thought it appropriate to share once again today, at a time when quite frankly people could use a dose of Carlin, albeit in something much different than what would have been typically delivered in his trademark kick-in-the-ass messaging.

It is ironic George Carlin could write something so very eloquent and so very appropriate. I find this message to be warm, yet alerting. I believe it’s still very appropriate today, some 14 years after his death. George Carlin continues to live on as one of the greatest influencers of all time. We can and should learn from his eye-opening statements and heed his advice to remember what should really be part of our daily lives.

An observation by George Carlin:

The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers, wider Freeways, but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less, we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees but less sense, more knowledge, but less judgment, more experts, yet more problems, more medicine, but less wellness.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.

We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life. We’ve added years to life not life to years. We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor. We conquered outer space but not inner space. We’ve done larger things, but not better things.

We’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul. We’ve conquered the atom, but not our prejudice. We write more, but learn less. We plan more, but accomplish less. We’ve learned to rush, but not to wait. We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but we communicate less and less.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion, big men and small character, steep profits and shallow relationships. These are the days of two incomes but more divorce, fancier houses, but broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway morality, one night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill. It is a time when there is much in the showroom window and nothing in the stockroom. A time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete.

Remember to spend some time with your loved ones, because they are not going to be around forever.

Remember, say a kind word to someone who looks up to you in awe, because that little person soon will grow up and leave your side.

Remember, to give a warm hug to the one next to you, because that is the only treasure you can give with your heart and it doesn’t cost a cent.

Remember, to say, ‘I love you’ to your partner and your loved ones, but most of all mean it. A kiss and an embrace will mend hurt when it comes from deep inside of you.

Remember to hold hands and cherish the moment for someday that person will not be there again.

Give time to love, give time to speak! And give time to share the precious thoughts in your mind.

And always remember, life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by those moments that take our breath away.

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!