For a time in the s, he also appeared on the stand-up comedy circuit. There, he would meet his mentor, Lenny Bruce, the legendary comic who pushed free speech to its limits with routines filled with obscenities and sexual innuendo that sometimes landed him in jail. To mark the death of Walt Disney in , he published a colorful wall poster showing Disney cartoon characters engaging in sex acts. I was about to give up when I came to Yippie. As one of the last surviving Yippies, he continued to write prolifically until his death, his daughter said.
And he recently wrote the introduction for an upcoming book about his old friend Abbie Hoffman, Dawson said.
Counter Culture Icon Paul Krassner Dies at 87
Krassner also had hoped to publish his first novel, a mystery whose protagonist is a crime-solving comedian modeled after Lenny Bruce. During a question-and answer session that followed, Lenny stood up on his crutches and asked what I had meant by that. By the mid '60s I had become such a dope fiend that I kept my entire stash in a bank-vault deposit box. Once a week I would don my Cosa Nostra sweatshirt We aim to please! It was, for you brand-name fans Owsley White Lightning micrograms of separate reality.
Charlie answered, "Nothing. Anyway Ram Dass kept seeking illumination and having his feet kissed by strangers, while I stayed at home and got a call from Groucho Marx. He was going to be in an Otto Preminger film called Skidoo , and it was pretty much advocating LSD, and he had never tried it but was not only curious but also felt a responsibility to his audience not to steer them wrong so could I get him some pure stuff and would I care to accompany him on the trip? The acid with which Ram Dass- in his final moments as Dick Alpert failed to get his guru higher was the same acid that I had the honor of taking with Groucho Marx.
As I left the bank vault that week, I was breathing slowly and deeply so that I would not laugh my ass off in the lobby. We ingested those little white tabs one afternoon at the home of an actress in Beverly Hills.
Groucho was interested in the social background of the drug. There were two items that particularly tickled his fancy. One was about the day acid was outlawed. Hippies were standing around the streets waiting for the exact appointed minute to strike so they could all publicly swallow their LSD the exact second it became illegal.
The other was how the tour bus would pass through Haight-Ashbury and passengers would try to take snapshots of the local alien creatures, who in turn would hold mirrors up to the bus windows so that the tourists would see themselves focusing their cameras. I told Groucho about the first thing I ever sold to the old Steve Allen show. It was a sketch called "Unsung Heroes of Television.
He told me about one of his favorite contestants "a gentleman with white hair, on in years but a chipper fellow. I inquired as to what he did to retain his sunny disposition. We had long periods of silence and of listening to music. I was accustomed to playing rock 'n' roll while tripping, but the record collection here was all classical and Broadway show albums.
After we heard the Bach "Cantata No. Do you think Bach knew he was doing that? Later, we were listening to the score of a musical comedy Fanny There was one song called "Welcome Home," where the lyrics go something like, "Welcome home, says the clock", and the chair says, "Welcome home," and so do various other pieces of furniture. Groucho started acting out each line; as if he were actually being greeted by the duck, the chair and so forth.
He was like a child, charmed by his own ability to respond to the music that way. There was a point when our conversation somehow got into a negative space. Groucho was equally bitter about institutions such as marriage "like quicksand" and individuals such as Lyndon Johnson "that potato-head".
Eventually, I asked, "What gives you hope? Groucho thought for a moment. Then he said just one word out loud: "People.
After a while, he started chuckling to himself. I hesitated to interrupt his revelry.
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Finally he spoke: "I'm really getting quite a kick out of this notion of playing God like a dirty old man in Skidoo. You wanna know why?
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Do you realize that irreverence and reverence are the same thing? When he came back from peeing, he said, "Everybody is waiting for miracles to happen. The human body is a goddam miracle. I remember I got a hard-on just talking to her on the set. During a little snack: "I never thought eating a fig would be the biggest thrill of my life. Your little Oliver Hardy bawls you out-he says, 'Well, this is a fine mess you've gotten us into. Editor William Targ sent an advance copy to Groucho, and he sent back a postcard that was as eerie as it was complimentary: "Thanks for the book.
I am sending this card to you, because I don't know where Mr. Krassner lives. Or even if he is alive. At any rate, it's a hilarious book and I predict in time he will wind up as the only live Lenny Bruce. The year after that, I was heavy into my Manson investigation.
Paul Krassner, Satirist, Yippies Co-Founder and Counter-Culture Figure, Dies at 87
Sandy had been a civil-rights activist. But Charlie Manson stepped on her eyeglasses, threw away her birth control pills, remolded her personality and transformed her value system. So now she was parroting Charlie's racism and asking me to tell John Lennon that he should get rid of Yoko Ono and "marry his own kind. I've never met Charlie Manson, although I've corresponded with him. But I have heard a tape of his rap, and he definitely used humor as a tool for evil. For the first time I understood in my guts what Groucho Marx had meant about misusing the power to make people laugh.
The first concerned a rumor that he had said "I think the only hope this country has is Nixon's assassination.. I wanted to verify whether he had actually said that. Marx, you're under arrest for threatening the life of the president. I can't tell you how much I enjoyed A Night at the Opera. Here, now, if you'll just slip into these plastic handcuffs I wrote to the San Francisco office of the U. Department of Justice, asking about the status of the case against Groucho, particularly in view of the indictment of Black Panther David Hilliard for using similar rhetoric.
Here's the reply I received:. It is one thing to say "I" or we will kill Richard Nixon when you are the leader of an organization which advocates killing people and overthrowing the government; it is quite another to utter the words which are attributed to Mr. Marx, an alleged comedian.
It was the opinion of both myself and the United States Attorney in Los Angeles where Marx's words were alleged to have been uttered that the latter utterance did not constitute a "true" threat. Leary was dressed all in white except for a black string tie. I was about to give up when I came to Yippie. As one of the last surviving Yippies, he continued to write prolifically up until his death, his daughter said. His newest book, "Zapped by the God of Absurdity,'' will be released later this year. And he recently wrote the introduction for an upcoming book about his old friend Abbie Hoffman, Dawson said.
Krassner also had hoped to publish his first novel, a mystery whose protagonist is a crime-solving comedian modeled after Lenny Bruce.
He got so into the story, Krassner once said, that he began to believe he was channeling Bruce's spirit. That ended, however, when the spirit reminded his old friend one day that Krassner was an atheist. Open main navigation Live TV. Full Schedule.
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Paul Krassner - The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
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