I was very happy to be able to interview Richard Marshall for the third time, and
saddened that this would be the last. In this one I ask him questions about the
elusive member of the Discordian duo, Greg Hill aka Malaclypse the Younger. To
clarify some points that were not clear in the interview, I have added notes in
HILDE: Thanks for letting me interview you again. It's been two years since the last
MARSHALL: This one will have to be short.
HILDE: I understand you haven't been feeling very well.
MARSHALL: I'm dying. Guess that qualifies. Still going to college?
HILDE: Yes, and still studying journalism. I'm very sorry. Is there anything I can--
MARSHALL: No. Ask me your questions.
HILDE: All right. Last time we talked a lot about Kerry Thornley. If it's OK with you,
this time I'd like to focus on the more elusive of the Discordians Duo, Gregory Hill.
Almost nothing is known about him; many people still doubt he even existed.
MARSHALL: He's real. Was.
HILDE: How well did you know him?
MARSHALL: Not as well as Newport or Lacey. (Bob Newport and Louise
Lacy--Hilde). Newport probably knew him best, certainly better than Thornley. But
I don't think anybody really knew Hill except himself.
HILDE: How did you meet him?
MARSHALL: I wish I could tell you, but I don't remember. We hung out with some of
the same people, and at one point got to talking. Don't remember about what.
HILDE: What was Greg Hill like? You said before he and Kerry Thornley were very
MARSHALL: Opposites. Hill was an intellectual--they both were--but Hill was the
kind who would sit back and observe. You always had the feeling he knew more
than he was saying. Thornley would spout everything he knew and a lot that he
didn't. They argued a lot, and it got heated at times. But they were friends, and
friends can do that.
Thornley would walk through a door and everyone in the room knew he was there.
He was the life of the party, the center of his universe. Not that he was selfish, but
he wanted to experience everything, sense and feel everything. And people could
Hill was different. You'd see him at a party sitting in a cloud of smoke, watching
everyone and saying nothing. But it wasn't like he was lonely, wishing someone
would talk; it was more like he was observing, analyzing.
But get started on a topic that interested him, and he'd talk as much as Thornley.
Just not as fast or flamboyant.
HILDE: What interested Greg Hill?
MARSHALL: Almost anything that was different, anything the average person
would not be talking about.
Hill loved computers back even when they were little more than science fiction. He
had this idea that they could somehow become intelligent. He thought the biggest
problem was lack of randomness. He believed the ape mind, which included
humans, developed because it couldn't control its own...input. It was crammed full
of sensory information from all directions and was forced to try to make sense of it
And humans had hands to try to not only make sense out of the world with their
minds but to build what they imagined, to reshape the world. The combination of
hands and brains; that's what made us people.
But a computer, that's controlled. Don't put garbage in and you don't get garbage
out, something like that. Hill believed for a computer to develop intelligence, it had
to have a random spark, burning chaos. It needed garbage. He worked on
something about randomness, a computer game or something, but he said it
wasn't really random. I know nothing about computers, so don't know what he
But a computer needs hands. What's the good of thinking deep thoughts if you
can't do anything with them?
HILDE: Did he believe robots might become intelligent?
MARSHALL: Robots were science fiction back then. I guess they still are, really.
He thought it would take a massive computer brain to transmit signals to robots, so
that the mechanical men would serve as the computer's hands. He wrote an article
about it. Fascinating even though I didn't understand half of it. But really I thought
what's the point of making robots into people when we already have people?
HILDE: Do you remember the name of the magazine it was in?
MARSHALL: No. Sorry. It might have been Analog; they had science articles
sometimes. Maybe Isaac Asimov's. He did put out a magazine of sorts, something
about computers. But sorry, I don't remember the name of that either.
This is kerry thornley dot com, a site about kerry wendell thornley aka lord omar khayyam ravenhurst, co-conspirator with gregory hill aka greg hill aka
malaclypse the younger, contributor to principia discordia, worker on operation mindfuck, investigated by im garrison, friend of robert anton wilson and
robert shea, supposed co-assassin of president john f. kennedy, and fnord
|An Interview with Richard Marshall
September 14, 2011
by Pope Hilde
|This is part A of the third of a series of three interviews with
original Erisian Richard Marshall conducted by Pope Hilde.
We have them all.