Tuesday, June 30, 2009

#13 - The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test

Well, while on the drug subculture kick, here is a classic: The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe. What a great time in history and what a crazy ride. Get an old bus, paint it day-glo colors, attach all kinds of speakers and recording gear, pack it full of free spirits and drugs and drive it essentially across the U.S. while freaking out the marshmallows in suits and shiny shoes. It makes for quite a book, although a lot of the participants were highly regarded "beat" generation luminaries I've never been a fan of most of them personally. I think they were largely hypocritical and I think many had ulterior motives behind what they tried to publicly pass off as groundbreaking and selfless. The author is also a bit too "square" for the journey and his own judgments and bias shows through often as does his disconnect from the group. All that said, it is a classic, and a great insight to a lost time in America's past. Recommended.

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