In Kingdom of Fear, Hunter S. Thompson sucks on a marijuana pipe and disparages himself in front of Anita, his assistant who would become his wife. They’ve just crashed a Cadillac. Sharing the pipe, Anita says, “You’re funny. You’re very strange.”
Thirteen years after the pair were married and 11 after Thompson committed suicide, the widow of the late American journalist will bring his personal marijuana strains to the smoking public.
Thompson, who took over her late husband’s Colorado farm in June, announced on Nov. 27 she will work with a cannabis company to make new strains from his personal marijuana. In a Facebook post, she calls them “authentic Gonzo strains,” named after his over-the-top close-to-fiction style of journalism popularized through books like Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. According to Thompson she’ll make them available in states where marijuana is legal.
It’s not clear how Thompson will create the new strains. She wrote on Facebook that she’s saved 12-15-year-old marijuana and hashish that her husband smoked, and has “found a legal method to extract the DNA” from them. If she has living plants, it shouldn’t be hard to clone them; if she froze seeds from old nuggets, she may be able to grow new plants; and if she has dead decades-old seeds, she could extract DNA from them to try and create similar strains. (We’ve reached out to Thompson and will update the post with any response.)
The journalist was famous for writing through—and about—outlandish, paranoid, drug-induced hazes, and for his raw and poetic approach to political reporting. (And for his reliable fiending for weed.) Thompson committed suicide in 2005, and today is an icon for 1970s counterculture and the drug-fueled creative process.
He wrote in his original 1971 “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” article, which appeared in Rolling Stone: “One of the things you learn, after years of dealing with drug people, is that everything is serious. You can turn your back on a person, but never turn your back on a drug—especially when it’s waving a razor-sharp hunting knife in your eyes.”