Monday, February 21, 2005

Notes From My Knapsack 2-27-05by Jeff Gill
Hunter S. Thompson is not likely to be claimed as a journalistic inspiration by many columnists in weekly local broadsheets, and I'm not going to qualify as one so inspired myself.But I will always be glad I read his long article on "Hell's Angels" before encountering "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" (hey, I was in high school in the 70's and worked in radio through the 70's and early 80's: of course I read it, I'm not recommending it...exactly).Thompson really did have a style all his own, and it wasn't the parody style of drug-addled incoherence with punctuation and periodic ALL CAPS that has now become the standard verbiage of weblog posting, a style which he sadly began to live down to and produce without any assistance from outside mockers.The creator of "gonzo journalism" was a skilled and proficient writer who, like a modern artist who has mastered drawing and perspective and color before going off on an abstract binge, knew exactly what he was doing even when he seemed most out of control.He got the story, and he told the tale, at least the early Thompson did. There is a touch of HST in any of us who are trying to use a personal voice while getting something newsworthy out in front of eyeballs (yours, dear reader!), even for those who'd never read him.With the passing of Warren Zevon and Hunter Thompson, a piece and a period of American pop cultural history is no longer open for revision or correction. Time will judge (and Zevon much less harshly than Mr. Gonzo), but Boomers aplenty will hold high their Bic, aloft and alight, in memory of both. May they rest in peace.Is that all? Well, I was going to write about Iron Chef America, but since the startling outcome of Battle Crab, I'm going to have to think about it a bit more. Or maybe Trish Mumme will be the challenger on an upcoming episode, and she can explain these things better than I. Tune in next week!
Jeff Gill is a writer, storyteller, and supply preacher around central Ohio who enjoys making his own pasta...occasionally. If you have recipes, send them to Trish; if you have stories of culinary disasters, send them to

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