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Carlin cracks up crowd

February 17, 2007|by DAN DEARTH

HAGERSTOWN - Comedian George Carlin entertained about 1,800 fans during two shows at The Maryland Theatre.

Carlin was greeted by thunderous applause when he took the stage for the first show.

"I'm here for me. You're here for me. And nobody's here for you," he told the audience.

Carlin summarily went into his act and lambasted former Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong and golfer Tiger Woods for their ubiquity in the media and advertising.

Recent scandals that involved male students having intercourse with their female teachers, and the 69-year-old Carlin's journey into old age also were topics.

"I've been drooling in my sleep a lot," he said. "I'm drooling about a pint, pint-and-a-half a night."

Carlin blew his nose, said he would sell the used tissue on eBay, then attacked political correctness by telling jokes that smacked of incest and misogyny.

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Mike Weiner of Frederick, Md., said before the first show started that he has followed Carlin's career for the last 30 years.

Friday marked the third time that he saw the legendary comic perform live.

"I saw him first in 1973 right out of high school," Weiner said. "He's right-in-your-face comedy. He's like a modern Lenny Bruce to me. You have to have an open mind to appreciate his comedy.

Hagerstown residents Curtis Dobson and Jeff Smith said they waited outside for 90 minutes to buy a ticket two years ago when Carlin last performed at The Maryland Theatre.

This time, they ordered the $50 tickets in advance and landed seats in the second row, Dobson said.

"(Carlin) says everything everyone else is afraid to say," Smith said.

Carlin is a comedic icon who is as good today as he was in the 1970s, said Jose Cidre, a Sharpsburg resident.

"He was avant-garde and cutting edge," Cidre said. "His work speaks for itself."

Fred Dodrill of Middletown, Va., said he has enjoyed Carlin's humor for "many, many years."

"I just love his way with words," he said.

Dodrill said he usually catches Carlin's performances on HBO, but Friday was the first time he saw the comedian in person.

"He's well worth the $50," Dodrill said. "I would have paid double to see him."

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