The Sporadic Beaver

Still on the Bus

August 5, 2011

Tags: Magic Trip, John Babbs, Merry Pranksters, Ken Kesey, Neal Cassady, LSD, Further

John Babbs was a freelance writer I worked with when I was editing porn magazines. If his name rings a bell it's because Babbs, aka Sometimes Missing, was a Merry Prankster, one of the psychedelic adventurers who, in 1964, rode across America with One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest author Ken Kesey, in a bus driven by Neal Cassady.

The Pranksters documented their LSD-fueled journey on 40 hours of film and audiotape. Now, some 47 years later, directors Alex Gibney and Alison Ellwood have assembled this footage in a coherent form. The result is a home movie, Magic Trip, which opens today in New York and San Francisco.

Click here to read my photo essay, “Still on the Bus,” about the film and my relationship with Babbs.