I AM KEN KESEY'S DOG I saw it all. Old bus, new bus. I saw a green parrot riding a ferret bareback in the living room, a joint on top of a Bible. I saw goats dance through the back door , gambol past the couch and out the other door. I have seen hippies with no hair and bad dogs, dread hair, multi-colored hair, people just come off the road with wild desperate sweaty hair and delusional, paranoid thoughts, which were embraced with hospitality and home movies. They ran me ragged, all the visitors. I had to protect everyone. They'd wander off by the cows and talk to them like they were porpoises, smart and communicative. The hippie dogs wore bandanna scarves like city teenage girls and didn't seem right. When they saw ducks, they stood riveted instead of getting low down and tearing off after them. I showed them every hideyhole and every feral cat, and the dogs seemed disinterested. The old bus is a swamp lament down there all humble and mossy. I led groups down there to see it, Smithsonians, filmmakers from L.A., famous people and kooks. Not one of these people ever gave me a treat. I saw a nutria go after a feral cat near the pond. Its long yellow teeth showed and it tiptoed like a cold rat. The place is a hotbed of daily violence. The heron will shake a bullfrog in its beak like a crazy thought and gobble it down standing on one foot. The barn owl is as big as a bulldog and leaves strange messages in its dung balls, teeny bones and fur. When Hunter Thompson visited, he carried a pistol with him at all times. They call me Happy.
-- Channeled by Genie Murphy
Date: Tue, 13 Nov 2001 23:45:26 EST
Subject: Way Back When
Way Back When
my daughter was 10 and Ken was collaborating with the Portland Symphony
to present Little Tricker the Squirrel Meets Big Double the Bear, I brought my daughter into the big city from our rural farm community near Aurora to see the performance and to see Ken Kesey.
When the concert master appears, violin tucked under his arm, to take his seat and the audience applauds little miss Mahrie leans over to me and in a stage whisper asks:
"Is that Ken Kesey?"
"No, honey, you wait, he'll be on in a while."
The conductor appears and again, Mahrie asks:
"Is that Ken Kesey?"
"No, sweetie. I tell you what: When Ken Kesey walks out onto the stage, you won't have to ask me, you'll know."
"How will I know?"
"I don't know how, but I'm sure we'll recognize him."
The first half of the concert proceeds, followed by intermission, followed bythe re-appearance of concert master and conductor.
At long last, onto the stage emerges -- larger than life, in full tails,
a GIANT bear head with a jaunty top hat perched on high --
a . . . presence. He swaggers out onto the stage.
Mahrie, with a HUGE smile on her face turns to me, nods emphatically and says:
"Now THAT'S Ken Kesey!!!"
Kesey sang this song a lot:
"When you walk the streets you will have no cares, if you walk the
lines and not the squares. As you go through life, make this your goal,
watch the donut not the hole...."`
Here's Kesey and his grandson, Caleb, in England on the Wheresmerlin Tour. Pic by Freddy Hahne
In one of his many lessons, this time in grammar, Kesey taught: "i before e except after c. Except for words that rhyme with a, like sleigh and weigh. For the others, remember this ditty: Neither the foreigner nor the weird financier seized their leisure at its height."
From: ellen hatcher
Ken Kesey and friends came to Kansas City on February 1972 for a University of Missouri Kansas City Symposium "Perspectives on American Culture" and in the process formed the UDDER Party. Here are Ken's thoughts from the program notes:
"Who wants to take a train back and forth every day from one schizophrenic life to another." from The last Supplement To The Whole Earth Catalog"
"Concerning today's movement, Mr Kesey has stated, 'Yet, while there's no gainsaying the steadfastness of of the workers neither is there any getting around the fact that the industry has suffered some depressions. I have watched faith fly high and fall in shreds, in impossible shreds, in the course of an hour. Movements moving like a fleet of Diesels were to be discovered a few miles further on in steaming, cracked-block and dirty carburetor dejection. Wise young Davids with a people's future in their pouch set off against Molech's Goliath and were busted halfway to the battle in the bus station toilet, tying off with their slingshots.' "
That was then.... E.H.
(now it is a whole different ball game. And that is to the good. -- ken babbs)
TRIPS FESTIVAL, LONGSHOREMAN'S HALL, SAN FRANCISCO. 1966
"Then, just before the auditorium doors were opened to the public, I looked across the hall to the opposite exit doors. There is this person, this somebody in a silver spacesuit with a silver helmet, holding open the exit doors to let people into the hall. Just ushering people into
this circus that I'd been trying to organize for the past four days. So I rushed through the halls to the exits yelling 'What the fuck is going on? What the hell are you doing?' At the exit doors this spacesuited person flips up the face guard and I recognize the guy who was at the Fillmore for the Acid Test. He yells back, 'Hi, it's me, it's all right. These are just a few of my friends.' Well it sure as hell wasn't OK with me. I didn't care who this guy was. I was responsible for putting on a show and I damned well didn't want anyone ruining everything I had worked so hard to do. So I screamed and yelled and carried on. Everytime spaceman tried to explain, I just cut him off by pouring more boil over, ready to burst, screaming, 'So do you know what I mean? Do you damned well know what I'm saying?' Space Captain flipped the lid on his space helmet shut and walked away. At first I was stunned. I couldn't believe it. People don't do that. Then I began to laugh. My temper was broken. It made me feel good. The spaceman was Ken Kesey. That was the first time we met."
Bill Graham interviewed by Tom Wolfe for Electric Kool Aid Acid Test.
Kesey recited this poem at a Grateful Dead Concert at the Oakland Coliseum in memory of Bill Graham:
buffalo bill is defunct
jesus he was handsome man
he used to ride on a white horse
and shoot clay pigeons
one two three four five
just like that
and what I want to know is
how do you like your blue eyed boy now
mister death ?
e e cummings
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