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May 25 2010

Hunter S. Thompson - Playboy - Fearlessness & Truth

Ancient Gonzo Wisdom is a collection of interviews with Hunter S. Thompson that bristle with authenticity and spontaneity.  Anita Thompson, author of The Gonzo Way and Executive Director of the Gonzo Foundation, selected and edited this compilation of her late husband's interviews that span almost four decades. 

Late last night I was reading through a few of the interviews in the book, one of which was HST's November 1974 conversation with Playboy.  HST talks about the Hell's Angels, the Freak Power platform and his run for Sheriff of Pitkin County, Ibogaine poisoning, Nixon, and Gonzo Journalism.  Perfect reading for a warm summer night while sipping on a beer.

Some artists are fearless but can't see the truth.  Others can see the truth but are afraid to speak up against the status quo and their peers.  They can't get through the resistance.

Hunter S. Thompson was both fearless and he possessed that rare and valuable quality of discernment.  The ability to see things as they truly are.  That is really difficult.  It takes experience, expertise and discipline. It takes a true artist to both discern the truth and to have the courage to speak it.

Hunter S. Thompson's lifelong relationship with Playboy continues in Gonzo spirit to this day.  Gonzo Imperial Porter brewed by Flying Dog Brewery in memory of HST with label art by Ralph Steadman was featured in the April 2010 Brazilian edition of Playboy (in Portuguese). 

"Boa pra cachorro"?  Maybe it's "good for dogs", but in the immortal words of Hunter S. Thompson "Good People Drink Good Beer", too!

Playboy Brazil Gonzo