NYC block of West 121st Street officially renamed George Carlin Way

New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio signed a bill late Wednesday to place street signs naming the 400 block of West 121st Street — between Morningside Drive and Amsterdam Avenue — as “George Carlin Way.”

It’s the street where the legendary late stand-up comedian grew up. Carlin would talk and joke about his neighborhood in interviews and on record, going back to 1973’s “Occupation: Foole” album.

It was an effort three years in the making, led by comedian Kevin Bartini and begun by a simple petition.

It took that long, in part, because of opposition from the Catholic Church on that street, which wasn’t so appreciative of its former student at the Corpus Christi School.

But Bartini, the church and the city’s community board had reached a compromise on that in October 2012, to move the Carlin street signs a block away from the church.

“I am so proud that all the hard work and constant battles to get George Carlin Way approved has finally paid off,” Bartini said Wednesday night. “George was a pioneer that let comic, such as myself, do the work we do. He not only made us laugh; but more importantly he made us think and to question authority.George Carlin; a great man, a great friend and a great American will have permanent residence in Morningside Heights and I could not be happier.”

Carlin’s daughter, Kelly Carlin, wrote on Twitter: “Today, New York Mayor DeBlasio signs into law the re-naming of W. 121st. b/n Broadway & Amsterdam Avenues to George Carlin Way.┬áThis is the street my dad lived on for most of his childhood. This is the street that shaped his mind and soul. This is the street that lived in his heart until the day he died. Thank you, @KevinBartini for making this happen.”

Bartini told The Comic’s Comic he plans to stage a public celebration in coordination with the new George Carlin Way street signs sometime this fall.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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