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August 31, 2010

Hillary’s Hair…

Hi. What heavy news made it to the Washington Post today? I thought I’d pass this important article: In her latest act of defiance, Hillary Rodham Clinton gets a new, longer hairdo.. (thanks Shelby)

And a BIG HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Peg OBrien! Yes, Peg has great hair too.



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August 30, 2010


Okay, It is 24 hours later now, and we are not getting much information about the Five Ws of this thing. Not even the numbers of the dead and wounded can be established…. The numbers don’t add up. I am confused.

Hunter S. Thompson on September 12th, 2001

That was from a column Hunter posted after one of the first disasters of the 21st century (after the November 2000 election). What would Hunter be saying today, 5 years after Katrina? What would he say about that Rally held at the very spot where Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech 47 years ago? We’ve all asked ourselves "what would Hunter say" over and over since he died. But again, as I posted yesterday, one thing we do know, he did believe in RECOVERY. Are we even close? I don’t feel qualified to answer that question. But here are some clips from the weekend news:


What happened to that national conversation we were all supposed to have about what was exposed by Katrina?” Doug Brinkley says we “got amnesia” and “forget quickly” on "meet the press:" 

 Wendell Peirce’s response:

I think the thing you have to remember is that we have to understand that the disaster lifted the veil of issues of race, of issues of class, not only in this city but in the country. If we are to move past it and truly be a part of this wonderful recovery that we’re feeling, we can’t looked at it through rose colored glasses. there’s not an indictment of one person. it’s an indictment of us all.

by Glynnis MacNicol’s analysis of that conversation here.

Aspen Daily News reporter, Andrew Travers, covered the anniversary of Katrina from Mississippi, without rose colored glasses that also hit home:

PEARLINGTON, Miss. — Five years ago this morning a 20-foot storm surge from the Gulf of Mexico swept over this swampy coastal hamlet. The eye of Hurricane Katrina, a storm that would kill 1,800 and cause more property damage than any natural disaster in American history, passed almost directly over it with winds sustaining 140 miles-per-hour.

A few hours later, Pearlington was gone.

Unincorporated and nestled on the Pearl River, which serves as the Louisiana-Mississippi border here, Pearlington had been home to about 2,400 people in 800 homes before the storm. Afterward, the population was effectively zero.

 There’s no monument to Katrina in Pearlington, though 30 or so homes still abandoned with yards gone to jungle around them are a stark reminder of the storm. Some houses still bear the spray-painted “X” the National Guard marked on them to signify they’d searched them for dead bodies after the storm. Today there will be no commemorative ceremony, no party.

“My view is that it came and it went and it’s time to move on,” said West Hancock County Deputy Fire Chief Deedra Burton, a lifelong resident, during a tour of the area. “This is the type of community where we always look for an excuse to party, but this is no excuse to party.”

Read Andrew’s article here


Cspan, (the only channel I have at the moment) aired an interesting Q&A with Allison Plyer about the DATA from New Orleans. I searched the website: The "numbers" are highlighted in a ten minute video here.

But I’ll end with Hunter’s missive from the last page of Hey Rube :

"Politics is the Art of Controlling Your Environment"
That is one of the key things I learned in these years, and I learned it the hard way. Anybody who thinks that "it doesn’t matter who’s President" has never been Drafted and sent off to fight and die in a vicious, stupid War on the other side of the World–or been beaten and gassed by police for trespassing on public property–or been hounded by the IRS for purely political reasons–or locked up in the Cook County Jail with a broken nose and no phone access and twelve perverts wanting to stomp your ass in the shower. That is when it matters who is President or Governor or Police Chief. That is when you will wish you had voted.

–Hunter S. Thompson, Hey Rube

Okay. Goodnight and good luck. 





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August 29, 2010

Fifth Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina

"It’s the recovery that matters." — HST
The anniversary of the Gulf Coast disaster is not going to be a time of easy discussion. Ashley Southal (NYtimes):
NBC will broadcast a special edition of “Meet the Press” live from New Orleans. Senator Mary Landrieu, Democrat of Louisiana, will stop by with her brother, Mitch Landrieu, the mayor of New Orleans. The show’s lineup includes several actors and personalities: Brad Pitt, the actor who founded the Make It Right Foundation after the storm to build affordable, sustainable homes in New Orleans’s Lower Ninth Ward; Wendell Pierce, the New Orleans native who stars in HBO’s “Treme” and is a developer in the Pontchartrain Park neighborhood; Garland Robinette, a local talk radio host; and Douglas Brinkley, the author of “The Great Deluge: Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans and the Mississippi Gulf Coast.” Brian Williams will be the guest host.
("Meet the Press" is seen on the NBC Television Network from 9-10 a.m. ET in most markets. In Washington D.C. and New York City, the broadcast is seen from 10:30-11:30 a.m. ET.)
NPR: GREG ALLEN’s story about the situation, including Aaron Neville’s contribution starts:
Five years after Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans isn’t the city it used to be. The Census Bureau estimates there are now 100,000 fewer people living there than before the storm.

Although the part of the city visitors see — the French Quarter, Uptown, The Garden District — look the same as before, New Orleans still has many challenges ahead.

Despite that, many in New Orleans say things may actually be better than before Hurricane Katrina.
I wish that were true. But let’s check in tomorrow to see what the discussions reveal…

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August 28, 2010

god Bless Maria Khan and David McCumber

Hi. I need you help –quick. it’s been a long, interesting day, but I promised Jim Caruso, Flying Dog Brewery captain and Gonzo Foundation member, Hunter’s story titled: "Turbo Must Die."  It’s about a martyred gold-standard steer that George and Patti Stranahan sacrificed to save the limousin strain of beef, as it were.

I remember typing it  into an ESPN column, but a quick scan doesn’t catch my eye in HEy Rube. I believe, however, that it originated in Generation of Swine...


Which leads me to thank Maria Khan (Hunter’s lovely fiancee at the time) and David McCumber (one of Hunter’s greatest editors)– "Generation" is dedicated to them.  It’s been a long time since I’ve opened this book, but this time,  my heart was captured by some Hunter’s best columns. Everything from the nature of heaven and hell, to George Bush senior, Oli North, Paradise Valley along with his dearest friends Ralph Steadman, Russell Chatham, Caligula, Joseph Conrad, Samuel Coleridge, Tex, The Chang Dynasty, "The Lord and Good Lawyers," The Gideons… well, you get the picture. It’s all there in beautiful gonzo order.

Anyway, where is Turbo Must Die???

thanks for your help. I’m a bit giddy after spending some time with good people in beautiful Monterey with an equally beautiful friend.. Thanks for your help with this search. I’d ask Ed Bradley, as Hunter laced this story  in an ESPN column after a night with Ed and his sweetheart Patricia Blanchet. If Turbo is not in the published version, I guess I’ll find it on my old hard drive or ESPN archive. Or maybe someone will search ESPN archive for me?? Athena and my meowing Siamese cats would be grateful so that I can unpack groceries (which contains their treats) and get the copy to Jimmy before my macbook turns into a pumpkin…

many thanks in advance… And thank you Shelby Sadler, Liz Yount, Manuel Rico, Nate (from Bishop), Neil (from Mr. Vac), Bob Braudis & Joe Disalvo’s force for watching over Owl Farm while I was away…. Thank You.


Anita Thompson

12:29 am update (groceries unpacked and animals happy):

OKAY! while i was still correcting typos on the post, a reader, named Gabriel, emailed the google book link. It’s from Songs Of The Doomed:(pg 281 of my hard copy) . (NOT Generation Of Swine) I offered him a job. By the Way, Songs Of The Doomed was Edited by David McCumber

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August 17, 2010

Let Me Clear Something Up About Hunter’s Fans

Life is good at Owl Farm. We’ve had more rainbows over the valley this year than I’ve seen in the 10+ years living here. The two resident Red-tailed hawks were flying overhead today as Athena ran back and forth with the ball. The cottonwoods, shrub-Oak and daisies are more lush this year than ever because of the record rainfall. Hunter loved Owl Farm.

But with all this, there is something that has been an issue with some of Hunter’s friends/family for way too long. There is a notion that Hunter felt disdain or merely "tolerated" his readers. Not true. What is true is that he did NOT tolerate trespassers or mobs, and never suffered fools, but he DID appreciate and love his readers. If you never got a chance to meet him in person, you only need to watch a video of him, or read his letters books to know.

His fans did not make him a great American writer (he did that on his own), but they did make him a successful writer. That was not lost on Hunter. The ability to pay his way and pay for various college tuitions etc, was due to the symbiotic relationship he had with his readers. Never forget it.

He also appreciated Christine from gonzo.org and all her work.

You know he was a bedrock patriot, and that he also didn’t tolerate fools or drunks.  Invaders of his privacy & property were (AND ARE) promptly punished. But please know that if you were one of the lucky one to meet him at a book signing or received a letter, believe me, his tenderness and gratitude were genuine. Just as your gratitude is for him.

Selah and cheers,

Anita Thompson

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Gonzo Foundation Seminar and more updates

Hello! Although it’s bedtime here (or sunrise in a few hours)Thanks everyone who participated in the first Gonzo Foundation seminar. it was indeed a success. yes, I plan to host more — perhaps once a month. Although I love staying up late with a silent phone, I wanted to say thanks to Rory for posting and making the video available http://totallygonzo.org/  before I call Mr. Tambourine man. With so much going on here, I was waiting for the DVD to be sent to my mailbox. Ashley, Greg and the rest of the crew at the local TV station have been great. Cheers to Grassroots — and especially to George Stranahan and Michael Owsley who lead the discussion. So, thank you Rory for the link….And grassroots TV station.

After watching Wayne Ewing’s "Animals Whores and Dialogue," everybody stayed late, and Ralph Steadman’s "Weird and Twisted Nights" playing on the speakers had Julie and the girls dancing in the kitchen. 

As for Septmber, Flying Dog’s Jim Caruso has arranged for an evening of Gonzo Foundation Bliss in NYC on Sept 23,24 25th to toast to more American literature, journalism and Political activism. more Details TK.

 In the meantime, hello to Lars Ramberg who lit up the Aspen Art scene via The Aspen Art Museum’s commission of "Restless Empathy" exhibit. Where’s the link? let me find it. It was a fabulous show and his study of Aspen’s history lead him to create a dozen masterpiece benches with Hunter’s quotes to ever-so-slightly remind us of our past, present and future…. here’s the link http://www.aspenartmuseum.org/restless_empathy_artists_projects.html.

 And welcome famed editor Shelby Sadler who will be arriving tomorrow to whip me into Woody Creeker Spirit.

Good night!

Anita Thompson

p.s. Thank you everyone who kept your vmails brief and courteous. Morgan and I will get back to you within a few days. some of you did not leave phone numbers or contact info, fyi. So if you don’t hear back, that’s why. It would take us weeks to try to line up caller ID with messages. So, try again.

The writing competition will be announced in Dc in the fall. American Gonzo the new order. Very exciting. If you have a love of truth in your heart and dedication to the craft of writing in your mind, we want you. Book contract for the winner on the horizon. the plan is for the gonzo family to grow literature, journalism and activism long after we’re gone. Your kids will take the lead soon. Selah! As Tim Mohr put it, parachutes abound!


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August 09, 2010

First Gonzo Foundation Seminar (Sold Out)

That is the problem with this rich and anguished generation. Somewhere a long time ago they fell in love with the idea that politicians — even the slickest and brightest presidential candidates — were real heroes and truly exciting people. 

That is wrong on its face. They are mainly dull people with corrupt instincts and criminal children.

— Hunter S. Thompson

Yes, hello. I am indeed excited to host the first, well the first Official Gonzo Foundation Local’s Seminar here at Owl Farm. George Stranahan and Commissioner Michael Owsley will lead the discussion on local politics. Grass Roots TV will be here, along with attendees from all over the valley. it should be interesting and fun. There will be wine, drinks and appetizers. And yes, security at the gate. If you didn’t get into this seminar, there will be more. Depending on how this one goes, I’d like to host them often. 

If you’d like to sign up for future seminars, please visit the UNDER CONSTRUCTION (don’t mind the Van Halen style gonzo mockup logo) thegonzofoundation.org and simply click in your email and we will get back to you when the next seminar is scheduled. Thank Peter for putting up the site on very short notice. Thanks bro. We have many wonderful speakers lined up, just as I’m know Hunter would love — because they’re his people. 

A liberal is a conservative who has been arrested.

Tom Wolfe

You can also click in your email to get the announcement when we launch the Gonzo Foundation writing contest in September. Or call 970-923-4995 for more info. So, I look forward to hearing from you.

Your friend in Woody Creek,

Anita Thompson



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August 06, 2010

Be There Or Be Square

Hi there. Tomorrow, August 7th, from 4-6pm, join the locals at the Woody Creek Community Center (and Cafe — two doors down from the Tavern) for the opening party of People’s Press.  We will be celebrating George Stranahan’s award winning book "Phlogs," along with laughter and good conversation with Patti and George Stranahan. People’s Press says that white gloves are optional.



Anita Thompson

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