Paul Krassner sent us an email with an excerpt from his forthcoming book, Zapped by the God of Absurdity: The Best of Paul Krassner. We are delighted Paul gave us the okay to publish the excerpt at Amor et Hilaritas. The first few lines brought into focus a thought I've had recently: how odd it is that conservatives are attacking the FBI.
Paul's excerpt starts out . . .
The current FBI has swung a pendulum from 50 years ago, when the FBI was an enemy of progressive activists. An agent’s poison-pen memo attempted to smear Tom Hayden with the worst possible label they could invoke with flyers – yep, an FBI informer. Others distributed a caricature depicting Black Panther leader Huey Newton “as a homosexual,” and ran a fake “Pick the Fag” contest, referring to Dave McReynolds as “Chief White Fag of the lily-white War Resisters League” and “the usual Queer Cats – like Sweet Dave Dellinger and Fruity Rennie Davis.” I was described as “a raving, unconfined nut.” I thanked the FBI for that title of my autobiography.
Paul is one of my favorite guerrilla ontological historians. While you are waiting for his new book, do check out his autobiography: Confessions of a Raving, Unconfined Nut: Misadventures in Counter-Culture.
Zapped by the God of Absurdity: The Best of Paul Krassner will be published in 2019 by Fantgraphics with an introduction by Andy Borowitz.
Meanwhile at Hilaritas Press, our intrepid RAW Trust Literary Advisors are helping us unravel a few typographical mysteries as we edit The Historical Illuminatus Chronicles. Both the eBooks and Print editions are finished for Volumes 1 and 2. Volume 3 is going through it's 3rd proofreading — one of the final steps. We plan on releasing all three volumes of the trilogy simultaneously, or at least very quickly in consecutive order. No firm publication date yet, but we are getting very close!
We offer awe-struck and unending gratitude to Chas Faris, Gary Acord and Greg Arnott for their meticulous help with editing and proofing. For the last months all of us have had our heads in the worlds of Siggy, Maria and John, Simon Moon and George Washington, and, of course, de Selby. We're enjoying the adventure, but as editors we have also been in Bob's head, and as much as possible in the head of a previous publisher who hand-typed Bob's manuscripts into the appropriate format for printing, and in the process left out a number of words by mistake. Mostly these were prepositions or articles, small words a typist's brain could easily overlook. Those were easy to fix. In a couple other instances we had some lengthly email discussions aided by helpful and sometimes hilarious comments from RAW Trust Advisors Michael Johnson, Eric Wagner, Bobby Campbell, Tom Jackson, Nick Helweg-Larsen, and Toby Philpott.
It's not so simple to examine the syntax in, for example, a sentence in one of the numerous footnotes in The Widow's Son that declares that de Selby's teratological theory does not "argue that electric lights alone are removing teratological molecules from our ken," and that indeed "these molecules, rushing backward from the Big Bang (which for de Selby occurs at the end of the universe) actually do accumulate exponentially in the “earlier” periods of existence." — That's just the first part of the sentence. Some of us thought something was missing when we read the second grammatically iffy part which suddenly switches to discussing de Selby's shady financial dealings and allegations from the notorious Hanfkopf about whether indeed de Selby and La Fournier are one and the same person. After much discussion we decided to leave the sentence as is, and furthermore decided the footnotes in Volume 2, The Widow's Son, are insane and and justifiably so. Michael Johnson put it this way:
"The footnotes are - to me - the thing that makes an already marvelous novel a totally wonderful experience. I read them as part of the “other world” in the novel, with RAW’s intertextual use of de Selby, running with his mad theories, satirizing academia (cacademia?) and its internecine squabbles, the guerrilla ontology of combining the P2 stuff with the Priory of Sion and other fictional and non-fictional tropes . . . The footnotes are so copious and thoroughly ludic in intent (it seems to me) that, even if an editor might question a word choice or syntactical ambiguity, I’d err on the side of keeping it as is; this only adds to the info-dense “madness” of the footnotes."
This is all to say that we have our hands full with a lot of demanding but incredibly exciting work as we craft editions of Bob's work that we think would make him smile in appreciation. At least, that's our goal, and we could never thank everyone enough for all the love, intelligence and support.
As always, lots of love and lasagna to you all!
Rasa with Christina and Olga