The Questionnaire: Hunter S Thompson
Hunter S Thompson, 60, was born in Kentucky. Jailed for robbery when a teenager, he went on to become a journalist and writer. He was credited with inventing the New Journalism in 1970 – after his stream-of-consciousness account of a week-long bender with illustrator Ralph Steadman – and ‘gonzo’ journalism, for his oddball style in works such as Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas.
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Fire, breaking glass and constant explosions.
What is your greatest fear?
Having all my blood sucked out by strangers.
With which historical figure do you most identify?
Benjamin Franklin, coz he loved electricity, and Charles Manson, coz he loved freedom.
Which living person do you most admire?
Fidel Castro, never mind why.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Weakness and failure.
What objects do you always carry with you?
A hookah, shotgun, ben-wa balls, and a fork.
What makes you depressed?
I went to the wilderness once and killed four pigs. This has depressed me for too long. Ralph Steadman also depresses me.
What is your favourite smell?
The smell of cordite.
What is your favourite building?
The tomb of Genghis Khan.
What is your favourite journey?
What is your favourite fantasy?
In my dreams I am a beautiful naked rhinoceros kidnapped by dolphins and dragged out to sea.
What is your most unappealing habit?
Should the Royal Family be scrapped?
No, send them to prison.
Do you believe in capital punishment?
Do you believe in monogamy?
What or who is the greatest love of your life?
Jilly, drugs, guns, whisky, speed and water.
Which person do you most despise?
Hitler – he was filthy.
How do you relax?
Do you believe in life after death?
Yes, they are the same.
How would you like to be remembered?
‘He was polite.’
What is the most important lesson life has taught you?
To hate the police and to always drive the fastest car on the road.
*note the original can be found here, and is referenced as written by Rosanna Greenstreet for The Guardian, Saturday 27 December 1997 and published at 18.22 GMT. Fifteen years later, to the day, I bow humbly, and can almost imagine the dignity and hubris he presented during this exchange. Long live “Two Thumbs” Thompson. *abide in eternity fine sir, abide.