If you have ever sat in my family room, you might have noticed a small bust of a man with a 70's porn moustache, and hair reminiscent of the Beastie Boys "Sabatoge" video. You might think this is a strange thing to decorate an otherwise western-themed room, and you would be correct. However, since the story behind it was so great, I had to put it out there for public display and scrutiny.
When I lived in Denton, TX I worked weekends as the head waiter at a B&B called the Wildwood Inn. One of the guys that I worked with was a dude named Ronnie Bass. To say Ronnie is one-of-a-kind is a severe understatement. He was an artist, a fan of wine, and a good friend.
One of Ronnie's favorite things to do was to scour local flea markets for items to put into his art. One day, he noticed the owners of a large flea market closing and packing up an entire booth. Ronnnie asked what the deal was, and the owners replied that the person renting the stall had been late on their payment, so they were shutting them down. Ronnie asked if he could purchase everything in the stall for the back rent. The owners agreed, and Ronnie got an entire stall for $150. As it turned out, the stall was owned by another artist named Ron Collette and included family picture albums. Ronnie decided he would use Ron's life as an art project. He put himself in the man's family pictures, and even went so far as to make himself physically look like the man- moustache, haircut and all.
One other project that Ronnie did was to take the man's likeness and create four busts of it, each about the size of a golf ball. He glued those busts to the top of four of the brass poles that you see at movie theatres with the velvet ropes between them. Why did he do this? I have no idea.
After the rehearsal dinner for my wedding, Ronnie invited me back to his place to have some wine, and so he could give us our wedding gift. At this point, he was quite drunk- he walked over to one of the poles, broke the bust off, and handed it to me. This was our wedding gift, and I must say it was the most unique one we got! We will probably keep the thing forever, and hopefully I will run into Ronnie again someday.
Okay, now for Friday's random facts:
I have broken/torn cartilidge in my nose 6 times, broken both hands and my right foot, torn up a knee, dislocated a shoulder, had two concussions, and had hypothermia in my life.
I can't stand cats. They're arrogant.
The only state of the lower 48 that I have never been in is Vermont.
I was once held in an airport in Belize because of a bomb threat on my airplane.
At almost all times in the day, I have at least one beverage within reach, but I'm trying to go all of 2009 without drinking regular soda.
Okay, for my suggestion for the Labor Day weekend, go check out Five restaurant. They are at the corner of Hereford and Daggett on the Hill. Anthony Devoti, and his sous-chef Cory are putting out crazy fresh, mainly locally sourced food that is American with a bit of an Italian twist. They are fantastic guys, have a superb staff and a beautiful place, and their food freaking rocks. Now if they would only put one of my wines on by the glass........
Have a great holiday, be good, be careful, don't wear white after Monday, and Cheers.