The old Capitol Theater, where the Dead played in the 70's, has been resurrected to good effect.
Some new owner spent millions. The crowd was pleasantly variable in age; lots of gray heads
but planty of Twenty-somethings.
Hunter came out without much fluff or adieu, stood in front of a mic and started strumming Bertha.
The last time I saw him was at Caldwell College, NJ in 1983, (rowdy outdoor show, opened for Garcia). 
He looked a lot thinner and whiter. But he stood tall and ran smoothly back and forth between
reedy-thin-alto and a booming basso-profundo echoing out stridently.

After Bertha he went to Scarlet Begonias... then weaved in and out of Dire Wolf / Peggy O.
By this time the audience had become rapt; the New Yawk shouters had settled back and
become transfixed. The guy had POWER. Range. Authenticity. This was the Grateful Dead...
from the root! Hunter is certainly no slouch with a guitar, something that I've known but
sort of dis-remembered over the years...so I was impressed with
his solos and again, the wide ranges he could cover.

Two sets... maybe an hour each... nice bar-room break at halftime; the Cap has a full-size bar with
active soundstage separate from the theater proper, but within the same building... now called Garcia's..
to appease both the heads and the local Latino neighbors, I imagine.
Hunter re-appeared without fuss and started picking quietly. The audience rushed back in, now
clearly eager. He wound through various Dead songs including some of those very last songs that
Jerry played on stage... KC Whistle... Standing on the Moon saw tears coursing down my cheeks.
Hunter only played a couple of solo-album numbers...Talking Money Tree.... I was glad to hear
all the GD stuff but would have loved a Promentory Rider or Book of Daniel.
But no complaints whatsoever, I was enrichened by the night, the crowd was bubbly and pleased.
At the close Hunter did a guitar-less howl of Bless the Good Boys back in the Bar. He had a big
smile on the way out. Me too.
-- Skypilot China Greg



                                                             Gotta Take Advantage

                                                         by Ken Babbs


         Not going to get this opportunity forever. Furthur band in town playing at the Cuthbert. Shannon
and Kit at the Springfield Creamery get me a pass, an all access sticker, just what I need.

         The heavy rains stop. The music starts. Shit, too late, I wanted to get backstage, catch Bobby and
Phil walking to the stage, say hello, not gonna be many more chances.

         Opportunity knocks. They take a break and I work through the layers of security, showing my
stick on pass, they have to compare what I’ve got with what’s on their charts, go ahead on, you even
are cleared for the buffet after the show.

         A huge tour bus is just inside the backstage gate. Bobby’s I bet. Door locked but a guy comes up
and I say, can I go in and talk to Bobby. He looks me over, skypilotclub ball cap, prankster jacket, bus
pin on the lapel. “What’s your name?” I tell him and he goes inside, shit I shoulda watched the numbers
in punched in the keycard, but no need, he opens the door and says, “Come on in.”

         Bobby’s sitting alongside a small table with his tech gear on top. He’s grey bearded, casually dressed,
sandals on his feet. Big hug and handshake and we settle in to a comfortable talk, me filling him in on
the milk cow, he tells me he worked on a ranch when he was a boy, both agreeing the kind of background
lets you know you can handle pretty much anything.

         A bell beeps and Bobby gets up. Time to go back to work. What about Phil, I want to know. “Come
on,” Bobby tells me, “we’ll see him.”

         We walk behind the stage, come to narrow stairs going up to an alcove, Bobby goes up, I hang back,
figuring I’ll see Phil when he gets here. Bobby waves at me, come on up. The rest of the band is there and
we meet and greet. Bobby tells them about the time at the Fillmore Acid test when the cops were closing
everything down and Bobby climbed up on a ladder we had put up in the middle of the hall and a fat cop
told Bobby to come down from there, they are clearing the hall and Bobby said I’m part of the crew and
the cop said if you don’t come down you’re in big trouble and Bobby said now I’m really not coming down.

         I’m watching the stairs for Phil but he appears from my right, having walked in from the stage.
Another hug and handshake and me saying I had to take advantage of this, got to say hello, who knows
how many more chances we’ll get and Phil says, “Oh, you’ve got a lot of years left,” and I say, “I’m
shooting for ninety,” and Phil says, “What, only ninety,” and I say, “Okay, you’ve convinced me, I’m
gong for ninety-five.”

         We’re standing in a circle, everybody listening and I say, “Reminds me of the time I was on the
bridge of the battleship Wisconsin, surrounded by Admirals and Captains and other brass hats and
me a mere midshipman, lower than even an enlisted man, my job is to keep an eye on the radar screen
shows all the ships in the battle group, make sure they are keeping the right distance, not converging
and I say out loud, “Something going on here, the destroyer’s on a heading gonna meet up with ours,”
and everyone turned and looked and a Lieutenant came over and took a gander at the screen and said,
“He’s right,” and picked up a radiophone and told the destroyer to alter course and everyone turned
away and I tried to disappear into the radar screen, was my face red.

        “What’s the point?” Phil said.

         “Pointallism,” I said, “like points of a compass like this is the bridge of the battlewagon and
you guys are the brass or at least keyboards, drums, guitar bass and voices and I’m the lowly middie
shy as a timid mouse scared to speak up but the point is to keep to your course with no collisions in sight.”

          Bobby stuck the set list, typed in big letters on a sheet of paper, out to Phil to read. Phil said, “I
think we ought to go right into Sunshine Daydream from China Cat,” and I said, “Which song am I
supposed to play my trombone on?

         Phil looked at me. “All of them,” he said.

         “Oh shit,” I said, “I don’t have the wind. I’d pass out on the stage.”

        Everyone converged on me in a tight circle, arms around each others waists. Phil drew me in from
the left and Bobby from the right and with heads bowed everyone started coming on, bop to the top,
groove to the loose, spirit’s arising, let it go, no boundaries, all free, praise the celestials, hail the heroes,
the voices singing, humming chanting, rising in volume, louder, to a crescendo roar faces raised arms
in the air a final primal howl and it’s off to their stations, grasping their brazen magic wand instruments,
 striding to the microphones and burst into song to the roar of the crowd filling the amphitheater from
the edge of the stage to the top of the far hill.

         I sidled on down the stairs and cut behind the stage and out the security gate. “Hey,” the lady in
charge yelled. “I thought you were staying for the after show buffet.”

         I gave her a wave. “Five thirty reveille, gotta git some shuteye.”    



                                                                                                          Neal, John and Carolyn

John Cassady, Carolyn and Neal's son (there are also two daughters) who has been
living with his mother in London since last June wrote me:

My mother, Carolyn Cassady, passed away last night at 6:00 PM, Friday, 20 September,
in a hospital near London, as I held her hand. The "End of an Era!"

She was 90 years old, after all, and we all knew that this day would come, but it's
never easy, as you know. Now she's with father Neal again...

She, of course, was frail, but still as sharp as a tack. (She would beat me at almost
every answer on her favorite TV quiz shows here, drinking her glass of wine and
smoking her cigarette--just like old times!).

Then last Monday she complained about serious pain in her abdomen.
I reached for the phone to call an ambulance, but she said no, just get her GP,
one Dr. Neilson, who makes house calls. (You know how stubborn the aged
relative could be). I called her, then waited. After what seemed like days,
she arrived, so I chilled in the kitchen, pretending to make coffee. When the
doctor came out and said, "she needs to go to hospital right away for tests,"
I said, "YOU call the ambulance!" She convinced mom that this was a good thing,
because she couldn't do anything more for her here.

We finally got to Frimley Park Hospital, about an hour away, and they started
X-rays and blood work. They eventually told me that she  had a blood infection,
caused by a faulty appendix. They performed an appendectomy on Thursday,
but she wasn't responding correctly to the antibiotics afterwords. (I thought that
Modern Science could do better, but the next day, she was gone...). Yes, she will be missed...

(Side note--she virtually STARTED the "Beat Generation," by moving from Denver
to SF in 1947, when father Neal followed her there, and she turned him (and Jack
and Allen) onto the jazz clubs in North Beach! The "Counter Culture" was all her
fault! Ha ha. Who knew!?!). (She denied it...).

All best, JC



    Ken Babbs was the emcee for The Field Day in August of 1972 – the man at the mic, keeping his cool
amongst the heat and craziness, combining cowboy good looks with R. Crumb-character moves and
a rubbery grin.


These days, Ken Babbs keeps the Prankster spirit alive with his Skypilot Club while continuing
to lead the sort of back-to-the-land lifestyle that he has long advocated. We’ve enjoyed our visits in the
past; the release of Sunshine Daydream seemed like a perfect time to get out the shortwave and dial in
Kap’n Ken at Skypilot Headquarters …


Someone came up with the idea to approach the Dead about a benefit concert …


K.B.:   They were talking at the Creamery about what to do and there was one employee – Benny
The Benevolent Benefactor – who said, “Why don’t you guys get the Grateful Dead to do a concert
and raise some money?” They talked about it and sent this other woman who worked there,
Carolyn Hannah, down to talk to them.

The Dead were interested, but they weren’t real enthusiastic about it until Ramrod [the late Larry
“Ramrod” Shurtliff, head Dead roadie and spiritual mainstay] spoke up.

Ramrod – who came to the Dead through the Pranksters – said, “Wait a minute – these are our people.
We’re all in the same family; we’ve got to help out here.”

And that’s when the Dead said, “Okay – we’ll do it.”


Ramrod was the real hero of things.


K.B.:    Yeah, and Maria, too – Carolyn Hannah’s Prankster name was Black Maria. The two of
them … plus Benny The Benevolent Benefactor. (laughter)






For the DVD release they got me to write a recollection of the concert to include in
the written material to go along with the disk.

                                             SING ME BACK HOME

                                                       By Ken Babbs

         Religious forces are needed to overcome the egotism that divides men. The common celebration of the great sacrificial feasts and sacred rites, which gave expression simultaneoously to the interrelation and social articulation of family and state was the means employed to unite men. (women too) The sacred music and the splendor of the ceremonies arroused a strong tiede of emotion that was shared by all hearts in unison, and that awakened a consciousness of the common origin of all creatures. In this way disunity was overcome and rigidity dissolved.

-- I Ching


         "They'll be fucking on the ground in front of us," Phil said gleefully, looking out at the bare assed beauties bodies sweat glistening in the torrid sun. Yeah, dream on, Phil, this is not a lascivious crowd, they are opening up to the day, the gathering, the music, save that screwing shit for after.

         Chuck and Sue Kesey were in a quandry. The Christiansen brothers, their creamery competitors, had convinced the Springfield Creamery's milk supplier not to renew the contract which, so the Christiansens hoped, would force Chuck and Sue out of business and the Christiansens could swoop in and buy out the Springfield Creamery and take over the business.

         Too confoosing? And certainly not amoosing. Chuck and Sue had built up the Springfield Creamery from close to nothing to close to continual success. What are we going to do? What are we going to do?

         One of the employees, Benny the Benevolent Benefactor said let's get the Grateful Dead to play for a benefit. What a notion. Only one way to see if it would fly and that was to fly Chuck's small airplane to G.D. H.Q. so they followed the path of the migrating birds in the fall although this was in late spring early summer and the path was the 5, four bright lanes beneath them, not to lose sight of.

         The plan was a go and the 1972 Springfield Creamery Benefit Field Trip, like the small plane, took off, but with no freeway to follow, what ensued was a free spirited concert, outside, in a field in Veneta, west of Eugene, the parking lot of the Oregon Country Fair, all put together with volunteer labor and concurrent with the physical stage and accoutrements being constructed, a movie team was formed, for this extravaganza was going to be shot in its entirety in 16 mm color film. The whole deal was sealed when the band members and the film makers agreed to split the proceeds equally and in those days there was no Grateful Dead Productions, there was just the band members shaking the hands of the film makers, a done deal.

         Music has power to ease tension within the heart and to loosen the grip of obscure emotions. The enthusiasm of the heart expresses itself involuntarily in a burst of song, in dance and rhythmic movement of the body. From immemorial times the inspiring effect of the invisible sound that moves all hearts and draws them together, has mystified mankind.

-- I Ching

         The word first goes out over the air. "Good afterhoon folks, Poppinjay the Dee Jay poppin dee jay all dee way, letting you know the Springfield Creamery benefit concert is a go, and you heard it first right here and as for you innocent thousands who are hanging on the edge of their seats wanting to know, yes, it's true I'll be poppin dee jay all deed day in every way every way from the first note to the last." Raising his foot and finishing on the same breath he started, he gasps and drops his foot to the flooor, flicks the mike switch off and brings up the volume up on the record. Sing me back home/ a song I used to hear/ make my old memories come alive/ sing me away and turn back the years/ sing me back home before I die.

         The early morning sun beams through the branches of a tree where birds are chirping and down below crickets are fiddling. A rooster crows. In the middle of a big field. A child gets up out of a sleeping bag and yawns. The sun continues to rise over the top of a tower constructed from logs jaggedly impaled into the grtound. A dog sleeps in the back of a pickup. A naked man takes a leak next to the Hog Farm bus. People are up and moving around, the start of a new day, the sun already bulbous.

         Page Browning, shirtless, a bandanna tied around his head, is in charge of building the stage and he brooks no shit. While others argue the merits of the plan, Page gets right to work. "Woo-ee, doin' good. By this afternoon I'll be even better. Energy's coming off me like sparks. Here's the marker stake I put in while the egghead philosophers were talking. Less talk, more action, I say, unh," he pulls out the stake and picks up the posthole digger. "I'd rather have callouses on my hand than on my tongue."

         Chuck Kesey, hand to his chin, thinking, looks at an empty spot in the field: "This used to be an Indian celebration ground. I found some painted rocks out there." (Did a forbear carve that Indian rock Chuck later gave as a present to Donna Godchaux?) "Maybe I can do something to restore the spirit of the place. I'll build a counterbalancing spire of freedom, reaching for the sky."

         Porta potties arrive on a trailer pulled by the suck-a-truck. No dogs, the poster said but dogs abound in abundance and a decision must be made: "Let them bring their dogs but they must pay full admission."

         A low slung Ford station wagon clunks across the field, Poppinjay’s raspy voice inside, "All dee way, kiddies, just like dee man done say, whoops, careful on the ruts, and dee overhanging branches, dee jay aint gonna be poppin in any way we get stuck now."

         What's the deal on people that don't pay, the ticket takers want to know. "You're going to have to say something like, have you got anything at all? Give them a little shit. Don't really hassle them but give them shit. Like, 'you know you're not supposed to be here if you can pay.' And then, if they still say they can't pay, ask them if they've got any money at all. Go all the way down as far as you can, without spending more than thirty seconds on each person. Food stamps or anything. If a guy wants to give his shirt, go ahead and take it. The thing is, you really want to discourage all this, the whole trip is to make money for the creamery." -- Bob Laird

         Poppinjay walks through the crowd, "What's this, a shy man smoking a joint. Doesn't want it to be seen, he's nervous. He thinks I'm a nark. Oh gosh, he spits it out, too bad, after all, we're right out in the open, damn, Poppinjay, you've failed again.

         The crowd is growing, bringing in food, lots of vittles for the picnic, plenty of liquid. Stickers, the concert tickets, are pasted to their bodies and clothes. Green shirted, blued shirted, big breasted ones, skinny ones. An undisturbed cobweb rests on a bush next to the path through the woods.

         "Say, is that a topless girl already? Kids running loose and free, is it like that in Ohio at one of those church lawn picnics behind the big brick Methodist? How could it?" talking all they way to the microphone on the stage, "Do I detect the rolling of marywanna? That’s it, Poppinjay, keep everyone up to date, provide a service, not an outlet for your extroverted ego, these folks (he looks down at the crowd) cannot be ignored. Bearded, hatted, levied, postsmokers, beerdrinkdrs, haltertopped, longtressed, scantily dressed, talking, nodding sipping hanging on the fence, a mustachioed gent with carnal intercouse on the mind, prevented by the fence, always the fince, in front of the fence, the crowd, behind the fence, the stage, say who's idea was this fence anyway?

         The two way radio Poppinjay holds in his hand sqawks. Brother Bartholomew, his broadcasting partner, is calling him from the sound board tower in the middle of the field. "You know the red acid with the little stars? You better tell everybody not to take it."

         "Okay." Poppinjay is interrupted by Sparky offering him a drop of liquid. "Here put one drop on your finger, it will help lubricate your throat."

    Poppinjay turns away, talking to himself: "I dunnoh. It's about the mouth is tense. Relax if you’re going to be talking to the people, whatever you got to say, say it, why be so reserved?" He steps to the microphone. "Ladies and gentlemen, today's program is being brought to you by salt tablets and our sponsor recommends everyone take one or two and today only they are absolutely free over at the Whitebird tent where two guys dropped off a girl who was freaked out, don't suppose she got into that bad acid, you know the blue tablet shaped like a little pyramid of Xychotomes over there in Egypt with the white eye in the middle?”

         “Why? what's with it?” someone yells.  

         “It kills you so think how happy you'd be when you didn't take one and John Lanning you didn't take your insulin and you're ging to faint in the crowd unless you run back to the Mu Farm where the guy wearing a gas mask has your medicine. Water is located in the old water truck but don't wallow in it, it's right behind the kids' tent, keep wet and keep salted up.”

         Bob Weir comes up on the stage and Poppinjay greets him by hitting him up for a loan, “I already got thirty-five hundred, another thousand and I can start building on the house.”

         Weir is unfazed. What about next week? Can I mail it to you then? What are those guys doing with that nitrous tank?”

         What tank? When Poppinjay turns back around Weir is gone. He sees Jerry Garcia standing behind an amp and walks over. “Hey Jer, we’re really moving today. Gosh, I don’t know what to say for a change, I’m so public but I can’t help but be too personal, just a little over the edge, you know what I mean? There’ll be time, shoot, we got all day, so don’t mind me poppin dee jay all over you, I’m merely trying to be the perfect host.”

         Garcia blew smoke in Poppinjay’s face. “Who needs a cranky landlord when there’s a perfect host around.”

         “Is there anything I can get you?” a young lady asked.

         “Yeah, more beer.”

         She fills a cup from a keg, all around her beer in bottles, in cans, in drinking jugs, “Last call for alcohol,” someone shouts and the band breaks into song.

         Left my home in Norfolk, Virginia, California on my mind

         Tell the folks back home this is the promised land calling

         And the poor boys on the line.

         These folk in their promised land, getting acquainted one with another, renewing old acquaintances, dope and booze lowering the barriers of social blundering, take some time for the hot hot high to come on, dance to the music, nothing frantic, smooth and easy, it’s going to be a long day.

         “The ordeal,” Poppinjay mouths, standing at the side of the stage. “The martyrs of today lay themselves bare on the furnace of public scrutiny. They face the terror and band together in mute support, scream their anguished pleas for union, are joined in holy reverence and vent their joy with life, not in separation, they have opened their hearts and found them loving.”


         The concert, captured in its entirety on film, remains as a time capsule, a vessel full of exuberant free spirit as exhibited by the enraptured edified and satisfied concert goers, a spirit that can still resound, that can still fill our hearts with joy, with compassion, with that sense and knowldge of our oneness, our open sharing and caring and the belief that the goodness inherent in all of us will continue to shine just as it did in Veneta, Oregon in 1972. And will prevail.

         R.I.P. those who aren't around any longer, we know you are watching from on high:  Keith Godchaux, Jerry Garcia, Paul Foster, Phil LaGuerre, Ken Kesey, Lew Melson, Ramrod, Sonny Hurd, Johnny Hagen, Page Browning. 




By DAN SEWELL — Associated Press

CINCINNATI — The war Wendell Berry often writes about is what he sees as man's violence
against his surroundings.

The Kentucky-based author, essayist and poet was named winner Monday of the Dayton Literary
Peace Prize's lifetime achievement award for his steadfast promotion of the need for people to
live at peace with their environment.

"We are violent in our use of land," he said. "The most direct way, which is invariably the
most violent way, to get what we want is the accepted way."

In his writings, he has pointed to strip-mining of mountaintops for coal, clearing forests for
timber and putting chemicals into the soil for agriculture. He took part in a 2011 sit-in at the
Kentucky governor's office in protest of strip-mining.

"As a poet and fiction writer, my goal was to write a good poem and tell a good story.
That's complex enough. A lot of knowledge, a lot of study, a lot of work goes into that,"
Berry said by phone from his home in the Henry County hamlet of Port Royal. "I have as a
storyteller, and somewhat as a poet, been stuck with the story of the decline of rural life in
all its aspects during my lifetime. And so I've told that story, and I suppose it has a potential

Berry, 79, doesn't just pen works that highlight the benefits of a simpler life at ease with nature.
He and his wife keep a garden, raise sheep and live largely technology-free on a hilly central
Kentucky farm.

"It's kept me in touch with the problems I've written about," he said.

Read more here: http://www.kentucky.com/2013/08/12/2762119/apnewsbreak-author-berry-wins.html##storylink=cpy

My name is Osty Gale and I'm an aspiring journalist attending college at Cape Breton
University. I was wondering if I could conduct an interview with you & some of the
other Merry Pranksters for an article in my local paper (The Cape Breton Post).

1.    Describe your first encounter with Ken Kesey

A jaybird was yacketing in the branches of  an oak tree. The late afternoon sun sent
a beam through the tree and lit up the deck on the back of the house. Centered in the
light a singular looking man stood erect, balanced, hands at his side, a slight smile on
his lips, balding head a golden dome. His glinting blue eyes drew me to him like a beacon.

2. What role did psychedelic drugs (LSD) play in your life? How did they affect your
 view of the world?

A grad school course in mind and consciousness expansion. Able to explore not only the
outer world but the inner as well, including all the way down to the DNA in your body.
Most important thing is the awareness of how we are all inter-related and how we have
to be kind to one another and help each other out.

3. Can you recall your fondest memory of first meeting some of the Beats like Jack
Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg?

Yes I can and I am incorporating them in the book I am writing, called Cronies, which
is a burlesque, defined as an historical happening embellished with inventions and
exaggerations, giving me the freedom of writing not  a memoir or fiction but a jazz
sort of thing, starting with something recognizable then taking off into improvisational
soars of unexplored realms and meandering back to the established tune again. Jack
Kerouc, in his book, On The Road, is the inspiration. Met him just once in NYC, same
time I met Ginsberg who I got to know quite well over the years.

4. How did you meet Neal Cassady?

On the bus. He was the driver. I was in back, getting thrown around by his driving as
he demonstrated how to do a race car four wheel drift, and I yelled at him, "That's all
fine and good in a race car but the attributes of a champion bus driver is he is so smooth
the passengers don't even know they are driving down a road, they are as comfortable as
if they were in their living rooms."

5. Can you tell me a little bit about the trip on Furthur?

Never took a trip on Furthur. And it would be a tough chore to tell a
little bit about the trip on Further, it was such a grandiose
adventure covering so many miles and years and caught on such an
alarming number of hours of film and audio tape but one thing I can
say is that it was full up, and kept you glued to the moment, no time
for musing on other thoughts or things not raging right in front of
your eyeballs.

6. Tell me about the acid tests.

We were editing the bus movie at Kesey's house in La Honda in the
spring of 1965. Every Saturday night we would show the reel we had
edited during the week. Word got out around the Bay Area and lots of
people started showing up, so many people it was getting out of hand.
We started renting little halls where we could show the movie. By
then we were friends with a band called The Warlocks and they joined
up with us. We started calling the shows The Acid Test. Our only
advertising was a generic poster with a little blank square in the
bottom right hand corner where we would write in the location. We
charged a dollar at the door. For your dollar you got an Acid Test
card with your picture on it that we took with a polaroid camera and
then pasted on the card and then laminated the whole thing. It also
had your personal info on it. With your acid test card you got into
the acid tests for  a dollar. Our only rule, unenforced, was that
everyone should stay until dawn so no one was running around loose on
the streets. We didn't have anything to do with the acid, didn't know
where it came from or who filled the trash cans with kool aid, one
labled acid, the other not-acid. The Merry Band of Pranksters is also
a band and we played on a stage at one end of the hall and the
Warlocks played at the other end. Sometimes we played at the same time.
And of course we showed the movie of the bus trip. Later on the
Warlocks changed their name to . . .

7. What do you think of White Supremacy?

It's too bad, one of those things that seem incongruous in today's
world, but just shows to go you how people will let certain ideas,
certain dogmas or beliefs take over their minds so they think it is
the truth but as a bumper sticker I saw said, just because you think
it doesn't mean it's true.

8. Do you think Americans want and could fight the next war with the
same fire and fervency as they did in World War 2 or Afghanistan ?

Get out of here. No comparison between WW II and Afghanistan. One was
necessary the other is totally a waste. Nothing was learned from the
Vietnam debacle. Generals and munitions and armament and other war
manufacturers always want wars and it is the job of the civilian
masters to tamp it down.

9. What inspired you and Kesey to write “Last Go Round”?

We had been wanting to do a movie that takes place at the Pendleton
Round Up for a long time, even went there and took pictures and made
tape recordings. Kesey wrote a screenplay and a gal in Pendleton said
she could get a movie made of it but that didn't happen so I said to
Kesey why don't we turn it into a novel and when that comes out see
if Hollywood wants to make a movie of it.

  10. Do you have a specific writing style?

Sit down at typewriter, er computer,  and pound away. Also when
inspiration strikes when the computer is off I pick up pen and paper
and write it out longhand. Secret is to write whether you want to or
not. Be confident.

  11.Did you or Kesey come up with the title?

Neither of us. Came from the 1911 Round Up in which the bucking bronc
title ended as a tie between three cowboys and they had to have a
last go round to pick the winner.

12.  Is there a message in your novel “Who Shot the Water Buffalo”
that you want readers to grasp?

It was obvious right from the getgo, in 1962 and 1963 when the novel
takes place, that this was a big waste of time money and lives. Can't
go into someone else's country and bomb and gun them to pieces to
convince them your way of doing things is better, like we're going to
replace a 2000 year old culture with ours? This point is belabored in
the book.

13. What was the hardest part of writing your book?

I first wrote it in 1962 and 1963, typing it on a manual typewriter.
I didn't publish it then and it sat for 45 years and I picked it up
to go through  it again and realized I'd have to type the whole thing
all over again into the computer, but a friend of mine sent me a
scanner and software that allowed me to transform the old typed pages
into the word program and from then on I was able to rock and roll on
the book.

14. Did your view of LSD and Kesey’s view of LSD differ from each other?

Not much. A door to open your mind to unlimited realities; a means to
expanded consciousness; a greater awareness of the material and
spiritual realms; a more benevolent look at our fellow humans; need
to work constantly at helping to save the world.

15. Do you think “On The Road” by Kerouac is as relevant today as it
was 40-50 years ago?

The book is an American classic now. Revolutionary to the core when
it came out, not only in the writing style of free form let it flow
without thinking mode, but also in the freedom of the road; you
aren't stuck in one place but can go, can break new ground. All still
true today but more ingrained in the culture now that so many people
have learned the lessons from the book.

16. Who are some of your favorite authors, past or present?

R.I.P. Elmore Leonard. Others of his ilk: Michael Connelly, Ian
Rankin. My current favorite: Patrick O'Brian and his 20 novels of
British Navy in the early 1800's; same two lead characters in all the
books. Old faves, Faulkner and Hemingway and James Joyce.

17.What is some advice you would give to a young author?

So you say you wanna write? Then sit down and write. Pen pencil
typewriter computer writing tablet cell phone whatever, lay it down,
don't waste a lot of time thinking about it, pour it out, then you have to
read it and rework it until you are happy with it. So you can't find
a publisher, so what, in today's world you can self publish easily.
What is important is to exercise that muscle, you can do it all your

18. What are some of your future plans ?

Swim in the Pacific Ocean. Complete as many of the projects I've
started that I can. Stay attuned. Be healthy. Help fix what's broken.
Keep on keeping on.

19. How has this generation changed compared to the generation you
were exposed to growing up?

Most obvious thing is the influence of all the handheld gadgets plus
the gaming thing, so many screen heads where once there were none
then the TV came along and after that the explosion of electronic
gizmos. Still the car rules in a large portion of society, can't beat
traveling in meat space but still, time behind the wheel is time
taken away from turning the wheel.

20. In august of 72, Kesey held an event at his Springfield Creamery and
the Grateful Dead
performed there. Do you have any fond recollections of that concert?

That event at the Creamery was attended by over 20,000 people. They were on the roof,
on top of the milk vats, sitting on the assembly line where the bottles were filled with milk,
there was barely enough room for the Grateful Dead who were crammed onto a tiny stage
jutting out from the big open door to the loading dock. The whole thing was filmed and
streamed out to a Country Fair parking lot in Veneta way over on the west side, fifteen
miles from the Creamery, where scantily clad fans danced and sweltered to a 24 minute
Dark Star as the sun descended and the band sequed (or however you spell it) into El Paso.
Now, 41 years later, that same movie, reworked a few dozen times by a few hundred movie
and audio geniuses, has been shown on the big screen for the first time, one day only, all
over the country, on Jerry Garcia's birthday but never fear, if you missed the showing you
will be able to buy the boxed set DVD for a mere pittance of I don't know how many hundreds
of dollars thanks to the generosity of Rhino who bought the movie from the Grateful Dead
Archives who bought the movie from Grateful Dead Productions who acquired the movie
I don't know how from Dark Star, the company that filmed produced and edited the movie
along with Intrepid Trips and FWAPS, what a long strange trip it do wah do wah doobie do be.

21. As an Emcee for the concert, what were your concerns with it, being an outdoor concert and all?

Would that there would be enough water for all for it was a recordsetting hot day of 105 degrees
but never fear the water truck was near, although quickly emptied, so the quick thinking
entrepeneurs hustled up a hot air ballon that hovered over the nearby slough and dipped
a huge bucket into the water and sailed back to dump the load on the crowd, fortunately
averted at the last minute by yours truly himself who got the word over the radio and
forwarded it to the balloon pilot, that the slough is where the effluent and waste from
the porta potties is dumped; a hail mary save, otherwise we would have gone down in
history as the only concert ever held where everyone was covered with shit falling from
the sky.