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Hippie icon Wavy Gravy on his new biopic

Lisa Geduldig
12/05/10 8:00 AM
Special to The Examiner

Wavy Gravy is a hippie clown also known as a flavor of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. The East Coast native moved to San Francisco in 1962 at the request of Lenny Bruce, and spends part of the year at Hog Farm in Berkeley and Black Oak Ranch in Laytonville. His summer camp, Camp Winna rainbow, is for kids of all ages. A movie about his life — produced and directed by Michelle Esrick, who spent 10 years documenting Wavy Gravy’s service to the world — opened Friday.
Who has had the biggest influence on you in your life?
A toss-up between Gandhi and [Martin Luther] King.

Is there a golden rule by which you live?
I roll on “Put your good where it will do the most,” which is a transmission I received from Ken Kesey.

Where do you find inspiration?

How did you go from being Hugh Romney to Wavy Gravy?
At the Texas Pop Festival in the fall of ’69, it came to pass. The details are revealed in “Saint Misbehavin’: The Wavy Gravy Movie.”

How would you describe yourself?
Portly clown.

What was it like having Ben and Jerry’s name an ice cream after you? Does it get any better than that?
Nope. And all the royalties went for Camp Winnarainbow scholarships. I hope to be reincarnated as a rainbow sorbet.

What are you doing now? What’s coming up for you?
The opening of Michelle Esrick’s film “Saint Misbehavin’” in December and an art opening at the Beat Museum of my minimalist collage. I am also gathering musicians to perform at my 75th birthday concert this May, benefiting the Seva Foundation.

Tell me about the film “Saint Misbehavin’.”
The movie covers my life’s story with the Hog Farm, the Seva Foundation and Camp Winnarainbow. It is not just about me, but the whole era, and makes me honored to be a part of it. Ms. Esrick and Co. have spent over 10 years in its creation. It has to be seen to be believed.

Is there something about you that people would find surprising?
My marriage to my wife, Jahanara, has lasted 44 years. Michelle calls her “the ground beneath the clown.”

How do you see your role in the world?
Hippie icon, flower geezer and temple of accumulated error.

Read more at the San Francisco Examiner:


so wavy, the hog farm and camp winnarainbow are just up the road from us. we had a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner with about 80 plus folks there this year. Rose has worked at the camp for 15 years being in charge of the nurses for each camp session and hanging out with kids. david has worked there part time for the last three years in the kitchen.
we both love it.

darkstar oaks is one the oldest homesteads in mendocino county. so david gets to take care of, rehabilitate and restore, make things work, and clean-up the accumulation of stuff around the place. we've done a lot, but there is a long way to go. we think we are on the road less traveled and love it!

our first winter garden is in and growing under a plastic canopy, which now can carry a snow load. just after we put it in, it snowed and the whole thing collapsed, so david reinforced and resurrected the whole thing. the plants are happy.

we have so many plans and wishes on the list. priorities are always shifting. rose wants a large organic garden, more chickens, a couple of sheep, an art studio, a sleeping pavillion, and a music venue. david wants the same but thinks he needs a tractor. rose is always telling david to put away the tractor porn he reads most evenings.

david also wants a windmill to aerate the pond, a blimp and a blimp needs a hangar, an a lot of other imaginary stuff. that's the way he is as he lives in his head while conversing with the imaginary characters that live there.

we see progress every day. we feel so fortunate to live here and we wish to share it with all our friends.

we'll keep you updated as we randomly attack this website.

pace e bene e ciao!


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