Kitchen Readings: Untold Stories of Hunter S. Thompson

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Unsafe use of powerful firearms in combination with explosives

Cultivation of illegal crops

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Kitchen Readings: Untold Stories of Hunter S. Thompson

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Overview

Warning!*

This book contains the following:

Unsafe use of powerful firearms in combination with explosives

Cultivation of illegal crops

Impressionable minors being exposed to illicit activities

Piloting of automobiles under impaired conditions

Transporting large sums of cash across national borders

*Stunts performed in this book were undertaken by professionals. Do not attempt them at home.

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Editorial Reviews

Douglas Brinkley
“Parlor gossip with a Gonzo twist. It’s an essential installment in the Hunter figure legend that continues to grow.
Walter Isaacson
“This is the real Hunter S. Thompson. No friends knew him better than Cleverly and Braudis.”
Loren Jenkins
“A tale of the smart, amusing and passionate soul behind the Gonzo mask....a must read.”
William McKeen
“This book is hilarious and heart-breaking and hard to put down.”
Camden Courier-Post
“Down to its last detail...a work that surely would have inspired Thompson to fire off a letter of approval—rather than a few rounds from a firearm.”
Publishers Weekly

According to the couple of old Woody Creek buddies of Hunter S. Thompson's (aka "Doc") who compiled this ramshackle selection of anecdotes about the gonzo practitioner, the kitchen at Doc's was the favored place for conversation since the living room had devolved into a "squalid, fetid, pigsty." Thompson's legend as a fire-breathing, vituperative hellion had spread far and wide-due in no small part to his own self-promotion of it-but many old-time residents of the Colorado mountain town where he holed up for several decades were fiercely protective of their resident hell-raiser. That attitude is clearly represented by this book's pair of authors, an artist and a sheriff, who relate numerous tales of paranoid and wanton destruction (often involving cocaine, firearms and too many glasses of Chivas) with the same indulgence one reserves for a dangerously eccentric relative. The book keeps the stargazing to a minimum and mostly presents Thompson the man-one who was fortunate he could write because he comes off here as pretty useless at day-to-day life. The authors recount everything from Thompson's invention of shotgun golf to the reason he needed all those peacocks around. While Cleverly and Braudis try to puncture the media myth of Thompson the Indestructible (on his aborted attempt at covering Vietnam, they sardonically note that he seemed to "only like danger when he was the most dangerous person in the room"), it's a gentle ribbing; we should all have friends as generous and forgiving as Thompson clearly did. (Feb.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061159282
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 2/5/2008
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 5.31 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Cleverly is an Aspen-area artist. He has been a columnist for the Aspen Times Weekly since 2000. Both Michael and Bob were close friends of Hunter in Woody Creek.

Bob Braudis has been the sheriff of Pitkin County, Colorado, since 1986. Both Michael and Bob were close friends of Hunter in Woody Creek.

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Read an Excerpt

The Kitchen Readings
Untold Stories of Hunter S. Thompson

Chapter One

Two Beginnings

Cleverly discusses cocaine and tits as big as Texas

It's funny that I don't remember the first time I met Hunter. I had read Hell's Angels and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas before moving to Aspen, so I was well aware of who Hunter Thompson was. I remember seeing him on his stool at the end of the Jerome Bar. But for all that, I can't remember our first real encounter. Maybe I can blame this memory lapse on the seventies; maybe someone was on something. It's likely we were introduced by our mutual friend Tom Benton. Tom is the artist who designed Hunter's GONZO first logo and also the original cover for Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail, the one with the stars-and-stripes skull. Tom worked on Hunter's sheriff's campaign and created the "Aspen Wall Posters," which were a large part of the PR blitz for that campaign. Tom and Hunter were very good friends and had a mutual respect. As it turned out, Tom and I spent a lot of the seventies and eighties driving the same galleries out of business. It was hard work; we became close. It's likely that at some point he was the one who first put Hunter and me together.

My first real recollection, my first Hunter story, was an encounter that took place at the far end of the Jerome Bar in the mid-1970s. Hunter was perched on his stool; I was on the stool next to him. By now we had become friendly. Friendly enough to share drinks, conversation, whatever else. We were doing just that when a young couple approached with caution. Hippies. I thought I'd left you guys back in Vermont.

It was mid-afternoon on a beautiful sunny day. It was far too nice out for good people to be in a saloon. So it was just Hunter, me, the bartender, a couple of real estate agents scheming in a distant corner, and the hippies. The guy was a furry little fellow, standard hippie-issue fare. The girl was hot. She had great Texas-size breasts swelling out against her hippie top, which did a terrible job of covering them, cleavage to the wind. Hunter chose not to ignore them, the hippies, for two obvious reasons.

"Hi," the hippies said. It turned out that they were on a pilgrimage, and Hunter was it. They had traveled some distance to meet the great man, and now they were here. And here he was.

"Hi," Hunter responded. "No, no, not disturbing us at all, just having a little lunch," he said, eyes glued on Texas.

Hippie ears were cocked, trying to figure what the hell Hunter was saying. This was a classic response for those chatting with Doc for the first time. Or the thousandth. There was plenty of adoration to go around, and Hunter graciously accepted every ounce of it. He even went so far as to show some interest in them, while mentally willing those young breasts closer and closer to him. He had somehow maneuvered the hippie girl between us and now had his arm around her. I was enjoying her smell. The target area was pointed directly at Doc.

Suddenly the guy edged very close. "Hey," he whispered, "you guys want a bump?"

Only one answer to that question.

"Where do we go?" the hippie asked.

"Right here's fine," Hunter said.

It was the seventies in Aspen. We thought the stuff was legal; we thought it was good for you. None of our friends had been hauled off to rehab yet. Hippie boy produced a vial, chock full. Yum, yum. Hunter reached out and snatched it from his hand like a striking cobra. Lightning fast.

He unscrewed the top and held it up to the light, then proceeded to dump out a large pile of cocaine onto the top of each of the young lady's breasts. Both hippies were frozen, mouths agape. I watched, waiting for Hunter to produce a bill to roll up, or some other cocaine-snorting device. None was forthcoming. Hunter proceeded to place a finger over one nostril and bury his face into one of the breasts, making loud snarfling sounds with liberal flashes of tongue. The pile of cocaine disappeared. He repeated the process, covering the other nostril and snarfling the other breast. When he pulled his face away from the girl's bosom, his nose and upper lip were smeared with the white powder. Saliva glistened around his mouth.

He held the vial up to the light again: about a quarter full. He handed it to me. I dumped the remainder of the substance onto the back of my hand and snorted it the same way Hunter had, but unfortunately sans breast. My pulse quickened and there was a pleasant sensation, though I still was pretty sure that Hunter had had the most fun.

I handed the vial back to Hunter. He held it up again, empty. He screwed the top back on and tossed it to the hippie boy. The hippies stared, mouths hanging open, the girl's cleavage soaked with Hunter's spit. What had just happened?

Hunter turned to me, his back to the hippies, and resumed our conversation at exactly the point where the young couple had interrupted it. They lingered; they had only Hunters back. Then the boy took the girl's arm, and they slowly retreated. Backing up, then turning to the door. They had met Hunter S. Thompson. Did we get their names? Did they get mine? Did we know where they were going, where they came from? They were gone, perhaps off on their next quest.

Braudis remembers rough and tumble: pavement and politics

My earliest memories are of pavement. South Boston, 1948. Concrete sidewalks and tar streets. Blacktop playgrounds. In the winter people scattered ashes from their coal furnaces on the ice so they . . .

The Kitchen Readings
Untold Stories of Hunter S. Thompson
. Copyright © by Michael Cleverly. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 22, 2009

    Great Inside look at the life of Dr. Gonzo

    A must for any fans of Thompson. The intimate tales from the people who knew Hunter best give an inside look at one of America's most unique writers/journalists.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    The drugs kicked in around Barstow

    Excellent stories of the celebrated doctor by his friends. He was bats**t crazy. I still miss him. Of all the books I've read on Thompson, this was one of the best. As his friend Sheriff Broadus says, "now when the phone rings at 3 AM, it's just bad news."

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 2, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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