So thanks to a reader (how a Toby Keith fan found this blog I will never know), it turns out that both Kris Kristofferson and Toby Keith are denying that the reported 2003 exchange between them, noted in Rolling Stone magazine, ever happened. The Tennessean covers most of the details here.
While some have noted that if neither side remembers the story, it probably didn't happen, I have to wonder why the hell Ethan Hawke remembers it, as he is the one that wrote the story? I'm sure some will attribute this to him being some disconnected Hollywood type or (fill in the blank comment about "liberals"). However, of all things to start an article with, this was an amazing account, and I find it odd that he would contrive a story that was going to be read by millions of people, and had to have known it would be subjected to serious scrutiny if it wasn't true. I expect that Rolling Stone didn't hold the article up to normal scrutiny because it was from a celebrity author, but I could be wrong about that too. Or maybe they just didn't want to spoil such a good story.
I guess we may never know, but I for one, am saddened to learn that this is being denied, as it was about to become my favorite story.
Update: While I think all parties involved are hoping this blows over, this blog has a bit of information (evidence? conjecture?) that Kris had told the story to others after it happened and that his memory might not be all it used to be. In summation, we still have no idea where this story came from.