1. A Brief Introduction

Terrance Gonzo’s Asylum For The Half-Baked features a dose of bad luck, half-formed sketches of events, gleaned from people who probably shouldn’t have been there, who may even regret ever having had met me.”

Pennington Flash: Your mind went quickly in the end, didn’t it?

Terrance Gonzo: That’s right. Same day I sensed it was over I found out my ex was getting married, and there I was, looking for a pen I was holding in my mouth.

So I positioned three bottles of booze by my bed. I worked hard on their configuration to ensure they all fit. Keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer.

PF: When did things really fall apart?

TG: I voluntarily sectioned myself when I came to, naked in the British Library, looking at a map of American Samoa.

PF: What was it like in there?

TG: The British Library?

PF: No, the asylum.

TG: Well I don’t know if you’ve ever worn a straitjacket in a padded cell but it’s a lot of fun. I spent large parts of my days running round, bouncing into walls, shouting into the cameras ‘I love this! I love this!’ It was only then they took me out. They’re so contrary.

PF: Did you ask for a refund right away?

TG: No no. I stayed there a while and I was glad I did.

Anyway, they told me I’d be charged a small fee if I wanted to take advantage of the refund facility.

PF: Charged for a refund?

TG: That’s right. So in the end if I wanted to leave I had to pay them more than the original outlay. Still, I went along with it eventually. You can only live a certain way for so long, and I felt I had enough material.

PF: Yes, you met some interesting people in there, didn’t you?

TF: That’s right. You never quite realise how insane everyone is. A lot of them told me their stories.

PF: And what was the general thrust of these tales?

TF: In short, romantic woe, and the seemingly endless inability to get what you want.

PF: And you incorporated that into your writing?

TG: Indeed I did. What follows is some of what I heard in there…

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