In Which Hunter S. Thompson Calls Customer Service And Leaves A Voice Message

“I don’t know what I’m gonna do. The question is what are you going to do…If your setup is still here tomorrow night, I’m gonna destroy it and, ugh, write about it. Yeah, I write a column, several, I write about a lot of things, you might of even heard or read my name somewhere. I write about, I write books, I write things that get out and people read! I’ll ruin your f*cking name! You goddamn idiots, you f*ck up my system!…Go to any bookstore or any magazine rack and you can see what I can do to you. And I will! You bastards who f*ck up my system like this. Goddammit, f*ck you. Get up here.” — Hunter S. Thompson

I recall this making the rounds five years ago or so — another lifetime in internet years — and it brought me great joy. And now, for some reason, it’s starting to make the rounds again, and for good reason: It’s fantastic. Nearly three minutes of bombastic crazy that we can all probably relate to in some way, compliments of the man who had Chivas Regal and cocaine for breakfast each day — when he woke at 3 p.m.

Here’s some background, compliments of Margot Douaihy, who uploaded the audio to the web

Author Hunter S. Thompson left a spirited voicemail for the AV company that installed his home theater. This classic NSFW rant by America’s foremost provocateur was shared with me and audio specialist Jeremy Burkhardt by the AV company that HST called.

Further, one of the AV company’s employees gave an interview in 2010 that provided some further background…

Barrie McCorkle , who is now membership director of Specialty Electronics Nationwide, was general manager at the time of Design Audio/Video in Glenwood Springs, Colo., near where Thompson lived in Woody Creek. McCorkle remembers the incident occurring sometime in 2004; Thompson died in February 2005.

“We just came in one morning,” McCorkle remembered, and “one of my employees checked the voicemail and was like, ‘you’ve gotta hear this.'”

On the message, Thompson complained about the recent installation of a “DVD combination/tape player,” which was no longer working. The author went on to complain that the “machine won’t run,” and that the installers had made a “maze” out of his wiring. After identifying himself as a famous writer, Thompson then threatens to “ruin your [expletive] name.”

McCorkle estimated that he and his employees listened to the message around 15 times that morning.

Pity the poor customer service reps of the world.

(Via David Grann)