Wednesday, February 23, 2005

MORE ON HUNTER S. THOMPSON

My good friend (and local city council candidate) Reverend Andrew Lord has given me permission to relay his story of a strange weekend he spent with the famed Doctor of Journalism when he was 16.

It’s been many years since I spent those warm nights with you in a resort in the foothills above Santa Barbara, California. The Santa Ana winds howled in the oaks above and we raised hell below the forest canopy. You took my booze, damaged the hood of my vehicle, and passed on a spirit that will never die.

When we first met at the bar, you shined a red laser beam pointer in my eyes when I entered the room and fiercely interrogated me to ensure I was not DEA or another federal agent. Then you fed me fine asparagus and potatoes off your plate. You offered some fish and I too went on the offensive, “I am a vegetarian and not going to eat that commercial fish because I don’t need to hire mercenaries to do my killing for me so fuck off.”

After our meal, you wanted to check out my Jeep, landed your ass on the crumpling hood and we did some field testing across the grounds of the resort , looking for the bungalow that JFK and Jackie honeymooned in. You balanced yourself on my hood, pointing and shouting and I drove, just following orders. I took you to the Kennedy cabin and gave you a 1,000,000 candlepower spotlight to help you secure the grounds. You made your move and took a strategic leak.

We went back to your bungalow, I had a brief discussion with security about how the roads in the resort were not clearly marked with proper paint and reflectors and how I may have deviated off the road somehow. No problem here. We spent three days together held up in that bungalow, strategizing how to get those fuckers from Rolling Stone off “our” backs and watching the opening salvos of the Gulf War on CNN. CNN was a new kind of journalism and we watched the “file footage” of aircrafts take off carrier decks and light up buildings in the night-visioned darkness of the Baghdad sky. “So what do you make of all this?” I asked. “There is too much to say…” you replied. I understood, we chain smoked ‘til dawn and called it a night.

When I returned the next days, I found the same mess of room service trays. “Damn it, what has he been up to?” I asked myself. It was the crushed ice, that was it. Seven or eight buckets of ice littered the room and “we” needed more. “You see, crushed ice chills whiskey better than cubed. It is simple thermodynamics.”

A young man from room service came to the bungalow with three more buckets and Rolling Stone was still on “our” ass. The man came in fumbling ice buckets, finding no more surface area for the supplemental ice, he lost all confidence and we could smell the lack of professionalism. Now there was a problem. Out came the big blade and the paranoid fit. “No” I insisted, “He was not DEA, just a guy from room service, probably a journalism student from the university.” You shouted at the trembling young man, “Well fuck then, you are one of us.” We needed the ice and talked about how Rolling Stone just wanted a short something but the drawing you have submitted is inappropriate at best; Rolling Stone agreed. We worked it out, a compromise, just a short paragraph on treason and the invasion of Iraq….

You threw the idea of attempting “objective journalism” out the car window and called it like it was, in a celebration of subjective reporting. You defended The American Dream and put the spotlight on the faces of the bastards who took it away from us - shining a laser beam directly into their eyes. Your spirit will never die and the great shark hunt continues ‘til we harpoon the bastards out in the deep water!

Good Night Good Doctor. You’re a bastard, but I love you.

Note:So far my Campaign Songs have included “Rocket Man,” “Black Bird” and am currently listening to “Ground Control to Major Tom” in anticipation of the completion of the hundred foot Woody Creek, Colorado Cannon (in the shape of a fist) that is to fire your ashes across the canyon into the night.

Andrew Lord Arcata City Council Candidate