As you may, or may not know, I have about as unhealthy an obsession over Hunter S. Thompson as he had with drugs and alcohol. I’ve often said, if there was no god, I’d believe in HST. So, you’ll imagine my sheer rapture at finding the book “Ancient Gonzo Wisdom; Interviews with Hunter S. Thompson”
On page 183 of the book, I ran across the Proust Questionnaire that he did for Vanity Fair back in September 1994 (yes, he’s that amazing that he landed the September issue, which is incidentally the name of an excellent documentary, but that’s another story).
I’ve pasted the interview below for your enjoyment.
Vanity Fair—September 1994
Gonzo journalism’s granddad (and sole survivor), Hunter S. This month he
casts a bleary eye on V.F.’s Proust Questionnaire.
Vanity Fair: Which historical figure do you most identify with?
HST: Marquis de Sade.
Vanity Fair: Which living person do you most admire?
HST: Richard Nixon—despite r umors of his death.
Vanity Fair: What is the t rait you most deplore in others?
HST: Greed and dumbness.
Vanity Fair: What is your greatest extravagance?
HST: The money I spend on the physical love of animals.
Vanity Fair: What is your favorite journey?
HST: Racing the stoplights on Park Avenue in a fast car at four o’clock in the morning.
Vanity Fair: What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
Vanity Fair: On what occasion do you lie?
HST: To the police.
Vanity Fair: What is your greatest regret?
HST: The destruction by greedheads of the once honorable Woody Creek Tavern.
Vanity Fair: If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?
HST: To get rid of my evil son.
Vanity Fair: If you could choose what to come back as, what would it be?
HST: I have no choice (and neither do you). I have been here many times for many reasons and I will be here after you leave. I am Lono.
Vanity Fair: Where would you like to live?
HST: In the Place of Refuge on the south Kona coast.
Vanity Fair: What is your most marked characteristic?
HST: A tortured, honky-tonk smile.
Vanity Fair: Who if your favorite hero of fiction?
Vanity Fair: Who are your heroes in real life?
HST: Hal Haddon [lawyer, Gary Hart’s campaign manager], Morris Dees [civil rights activist], Nina Hartley [pron star], Jacques Cousteau [undersea explorer].
Vanity Fair: How would you like to die?
Vanity Fair: What is your motto?
HST: “Res Ipsa Loquitur.”