"I have stolen more quotes and thoughts and purely elegant little starbursts of writing from the book of Revelation than anything else
in the English language--and it is not because I am a biblical scholar, or because of any religious faith, but because I love the wild
power of the language and the purity of the madness that governs it and makes it music."
-Hunter S. Thompson
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It is not this man's crazy ether binges or acid freakouts or even his Wild Turkey infused writing that makes Hunter so nutritional to my
life. What gives him depth and his work relevance in my own sense of reality is the man's unapologetic conviction despite the odds.
His ability to stay true to his Southern roots as a Southern gentleman without any deviation in his morality, even as a young boy. And
above all, his tireless efforts as an to maintain his position as a true American patriot, in the purest sense. He knew what America
could be.
But to no avail. We had the hubris of a peaceful nation. The "high and beautiful wave" of the sixties couldn't last forever and the
current was too strong. America always seemed to be the boat against the current, bobbing along with its bottom half marred in such
a way that the boat just bobbed in a circle with no logistical way of making it point in any one direction effectively. We are still finding
our way back to shore, reinforcing the hull, repairing what we could of the rudder, and the bow at the front of the boat is taking shape
nicely.
Maybe not today nor tomorrow but I think as long as we have the hope of seeing dry land again, we will never be far from home.
We'll make it safely ashore telling all about our fight for survival on the unforgiving waves of a new tomorrow, the ill will of the
naysayers denying it's existence, beckoning every dawn and dusk. But we paddled on knowing that somehow, we would prevail.
That's the Gonzo way of life in a sense. Hunter was a literary patriot.
He proved that you could be one without going overseas to rage war. Hunter could wield a gun, and was very keen on firing one. He
was an avid gun enthusiast. But his real ammunition was in the written word. This is what he had to say after Richard Nixon’s death
in April of 94: “If the right people had been in charge of Nixon's funeral, his casket would have been launched into one of those
open-sewage canals that empty into the ocean just south of Los Angeles. He was a swine of a man and a jabbering dupe of a
president. Nixon was so crooked that he needed servants to help him screw his pants on every morning. Even his funeral was
illegal.”
There are two fearless people in the realm of danger that should be recognized and praised for their iconic brilliance: Manolete and
Hunter S. Thompson. Both were titans of their respective careers. Manolete slayed bulls, Hunter slayed politicians and mind altering
drugs. I've often made the joke that it wasn't Hunter who tripped on acid...It was the acid that would trip on Hunter. I've never
met the man.
I would've given anything to have just shook his hand to say Thank You. Thank You for gifting America the likes of you. To most of
the elders during his writing prime, he was not the hero they wanted, but the hero they needed. Like Batman. The only difference is,
he didn't fight the freaks of the night.
He fought for the maintenance of the American Dream. Though he wrote that Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas was his epitaph
chronicling the death of the American Dream, I believe Hunter never truly believed it was WHOLLY gone. I think he spent the rest of
his life trying to salvage the remnants of that supposed unrealized dream. D yourselves a favor and head to your nearest Barnes &
Noble and buy Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas, keep this man's legend alive. Don't let his literary works become folkloric. And after
that, to get a sense of who he REALLY was as a man, read “The Gonzo Way”, written by his widow Anita Thompson. I write this not
as a person trying to use another man's great works to greater glorify my own writing. I write this as a love letter to literature and to
celebrate one of the most important faces within that framework: Dr. Hunter S. Thompson.