The blog 5 days in Connecticut is a rambling, navel-gazing tell-all about a man's struggle with alcoholism and drug addiction. There's little to distinguish it from the reams of self-published addiction stories that populate certain corners of the Internet.
It would be an entirely unremarkable piece of work were it not authored by an adult son of Dallas energy magnate T. Boone Pickens, and if the son didn't accuse his father of child abuse.
"My parents had a terrible marriage; my father hated my mother, and she was terrified of him," reads one post. "He abused all of us. It was up to me to take care of my mom. When my father abused her, I took care of her. She smothered me with kisses, pulling me too close for too long. It felt strange, but I knew she needed me. I was her little husband, the one that loved her unconditionally."
Freud would have a field day with that tidbit, but Pickens leaves it mostly unexplored. It's his domineering father, he suggests, who is largely responsible for driving him into a downward spiral of drug and alcohol abuse. He started drinking when he was 12, snorting cocaine and dropping LSD at 15. By then, he was addicted.
T. Boone Pickens says those claims are, in a word, bullshit, and filed a lawsuit in Dallas County back in February, claiming that Michael Pickens is a cyber bully who's filling his blog in hopes of extorting money from his father.
The lawsuit was filed anonymously, with all parties identified only by their initials. "B.P.," for example, is described as "a father, a grandfather, a role model, a leader, an innovator, and a successful entrepreneur," but it wasn't a very long leap to figure out who the parties were.
The evidence so far would seem to back up T. Boone Pickens' assertion that the blog's claims are at least highly exaggerated, if not outright bogus. Pickens is joined in his lawsuit by three other children, T. Boone III, Pamela Pickens and stepdaughter Elizabeth Cordia. And Michael Pickens' own son, Michael Jr., thinks his dad is out of bounds.
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"I love my father dearly, and I know he loves me," he told Forbes. "But this blog stuff is out of control, it's not accurate in the least."
Michael Pickens dismisses this, saying his siblings "are being paid monthly to cosign Boone's bullshit," but there are questions about his credibility. There's the history of drug addiction, of course, but there's also a run-in with the Securities and Exchange Commission. According to Forbes, he was sentenced to five years probation in 2007 after attempting to drive up the price of his penny stock holdings by sending out hundreds of thousands of faxes to investors addressed to a fictitious "Dr. Mitchel."
A temporary restraining order forced Michael Pickens to take down the more incendiary posts, but he's continuing to blog and share his recovery story. He's been touting a recent radio appearance and has used the example of his nephew T. Boone IV, a TCU student who died of a drug overdose in January, as a pretext for speaking about his own struggles.
The trial is scheduled for September.