Welcome to the Monty Wolf Blog!
Here you will find random bits of me

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

internet mayhem and kitchen magic

this was a fairly non-productive day!

was up late last night working on ron’s computer, so i slept in until almost 8.

ran around to get chairs and a table for lulu’s (not-so) sweet sixteen, hung a painting at the dollhouse and paid a visit to the tailor to get my jacket personalized to my torso; gotta look cool at the mansion, you know?

also moved the heaviest tv in the world: some kind of sony high definition trinitron. which must mean “heavy as a 428 short block” in japanese.

spent most of the afternoon on the phone with aol tech support.

disclaimer: i am not an a-o-hell subscriber!

i’m trying to wean ron off of it; not an easy job!

we get dsl from telco. so, we don’t have to use aol (and i do not).

so, i have not had and problems.

in fact: i’ve been flying through cyberspace while ron has been trying to just pick up his mail.

isn’t aol’s slogan something like: the internet made easy?

who the hell says?

aol reminds me of the democratic party: tell the lie enough and eventually people believe it!

it also reminds me of the republican party: no balls and not willing to follow-through with something that people really want.

i’m not falling for it!

i can’t even tell what i’m supposed to do when i’m on ron’s aol browser; the damn thing has more buttons than nasa’s mission control!

not that i can figure out what i’m supposed to do on ie; that browser is enough to make me want to leave the internet.

i think i’ve been using firefox for about 4 years now and haven’t looked back!

talk about simple: back button; forward button; recycle; stop; home; address bar!

before i got on the phone with the tech, ron told felicia that i was making fun of aol and was promoting firefox.

she told him firefox is old news.

i think what she meant was: firefox being better than aol is old news!

news flash!

just got a party report from the dollhouse: $500 in sushi and another $200 in other party fare have been consumed (along with other substances, i’m sure) and the cops have not yet been called.

the night is still early and "the mutant" and "forehead", two of lulu's friends, are still on the grounds!

following the report: i heard ron bragging on me to susie; i made a little magic in the kitchen tonight by using chicken breasts, pasta, provolone, a few things that i could find in the pantry and my imagination.

some of my favorite meals have been things i’ve just slammed together from nothing.

i remember making eggs the morning after a david bowie concert at a campground in massachusetts surrounded by a mostly geriatric group of campers who came to relax in the mineral baths.

i thought we had everything we were going to need for a groovy camp breakfast: eggs; potatoes baked in the campfire from the night before, ready to become homefries; butter; onions.

everything we needed!

everything but salt and pepper!

now, i’m not a slave to the saltshaker, but potatoes and eggs need a little dash. just a dash, mind you.

but, pepper is a must! fresh ground, preferably.

i looked and looked and couldn’t come up with anything to season meal.

all i could find was a few crumbs of cool ranch doritos left in the bottom of the bag.

hey, wait a minute!



why not?

i crumbled up what was left of the corn chips in the bottom of the bag, sautéed the potatoes in butter with the chip crumbs until the potatoes were ready the scrambled-in the eggs!

i know i am not the only person who remembers that as the best camp breakfast ever.

rabbit manor invitation

click on this image to read the invitation.

oh, and to see the bunnies a little better.

friends, a good ol' murder and teabagging it in the land of teabags

this is the 3rd of 3 miserable days in a row.

on saturday we rearranged the garage at the beach house and built a compound for the shitsus at the dollhouse.

spent most of sunday in bed with one of my headaches.

spent this morning recovering from the previous day’s headache, took lulu to the doctor, supervised the electrician back at the dollhouse, then went shopping for lulu’s sweet sixteen birthday party, which is tomorrow.

i know today doesn’t sound like much. but, i worked through most of it with half of my brain tied behind my back and the other half trying to catch up with the tied-off part.

i also didn’t get to eat dinner until 11pm.

so much for me doing a little writing every night to get back into the habit of writing on a regular basis.

i thought this was supposed to start getting easier after we wrapped up the painting?

well, it has been an interesting week, nonetheless:

i got an email from my first “real” girlfriend: gwen. what a trip! it’s been well over 30 years since i’ve seen her. sounds like she’s had a pretty tough time off and on. it appears that she in a good and stable relationship. i’m happy for her.

got a call from alan yesterday! it’s always good to talk to big al! my sense of humor has always been important to me. and alan’s sense of humor was important in shaping mine. i hope it works out that ron and i can meet up with him and ricky when we’re in socal the week after next (have alan and ricky really been married 30 years?).

oh, did i forget about going down to socal?

ron and i are going down to beverly hills to spend an evening at the playboy mansion for the playboy concours d’eligance!

“oh, oh, oh rabbit manor. up in rabbit manor!”

i guess it’s just another symbol of how my life is changing.

so, while we’re down there, we’re supposed to go sailing out of newport. that will be my opportunity to hook up with alan.

on the way down: we’re going to stop off at david heavener’s movie ranch. ron tells me that they’re shooting that day and i’ll have a quick part in a horror moving they’re shooting. maybe i’ll get to be murdered. how cool with that be? we’ll have to see if that pans out since we’re going to be on the run from the moment we leave the peninsula till we return.

i will, however, get a chance to talk to david about my screenplay.

the latest edition of octane magazine arrived today.

there is a picture from the latest goodwood of the redhead, the blue flame, al teague’s streamliner, flatfire and one of the nebulous cars. it’s always nice to see the redhead in a magazine. especially when it’s a teabag rag from a teabag event in the land of teabags.

the fog was the thickest tonight that i have ever seen! far too dangerous for mutant 17-year-olds to be driving in.

i think it’s been over a week since the sun has appeared in pebble beach!

my tan is gone!

Saturday, July 28, 2007

tales to tell: the crazy artist

one day, back when ron and i were working together at kptl in carson city, this crazy lady came into the radio station looking to paint or draw something for the radio station. i guess she thought we were television and not radio.

she was in tears before she ever left ron’s office. since my office was right outside of ron’s i was there for the whole scene and wishing i had a place where i could hide.

well, even though we knew she was a couple of enchiladas short of a #6 combo, we talked about how we could use this woman’s talent in order to help her out.

and talented she was.

she was as talented as she was crazy!

her portfolio was loaded with wonderful examples of her artwork, from oils to watercolors to charcoal.

she had a great oil of pope john paul ii that is, or was, hanging in the vatican, and a very realistic watercolor of the silver legacy casino in reno.
very talented!

extremely talented!

so, ron commissioned her to do renderings of the air staff.

knowing that tq, being the former mrs. nevada and all, would feel slighted if she didn’t get hers first, he had “the crazy artist” (everybody has a nickname in and around the “secret obelisk society” and that became janet’s) begin with her image.

about a week later she returned with the rendering of tq.
it was. . . well. . . it looked like tq. sort of! but, it did not hold up to her other examples.

so, needles to say, i was a little apprehensive about my turn.

she took a photo home that somebody else had recently shot of me on one day, came back a day later with her 35mm and shot a few more before heading back to her home.

the sad story is: her home was a van that she shared with a dog that we never saw.

about a week or two later: she showed up with a folder containing my portrait.

i didn’t even want to open it when she handed it to me; i didn’t know if i could look gracious under that kind for pressure; i just knew it was going to be. . . well. . . not great.

until, however, i actually saw the rendering!

i thought i was looking at myself in the mirror.

i mean that thing looks more like me than me!

my friend, jim fannin, says the image haunts him my eyes are so lifelike.
janet captured the real me: the smile in my eyes, the creases of my smile and around my eyes, my elvish ears, the part in my van dyke and all the little nuances that make me me.

i never hoped for it to be as good as it turned out!

let me remind you: she was living in her van and that is where she created my rendering in charcoal and pencil.

truly amazing!

every time i look at that thing i am blown away with it.

shortly after, she had to leave town (i assume in her van) and we never saw her again.

scott (of the famous “scott and monty show”) and jarvis never got their turns for immortality and the other artwork ron commissioned (a parade of rock and roll stars gathering under the reno arch, as the kptl crew, with ron behind the wheel of a 1963 corvette, passed).

all of these things were commissioned, not because we needed artwork for the radio station, but because ron was trying to help out the crazy artist.

today my friend, kathryn (i’ll have to tell the story of how she and i missed our connecting flight out of atlanta when we were coming home from myrtle beach bike week), suggested that i use that image as my picture on the blog.
since kathryn is so good for my ego, i decided that she knows best.

when things were not going so well for me, kathryn was the one person who helped me to believe in myself. well, fannin always tells me to remember that i am monty wolf and nobody else is. but, he’s not as attractive as kathryn. and a pretty woman is much easier to believe than some dude, even if he is one of my radio heroes.

thank you kathryn!

thank you fannin!

and thank you janet, the crazy artist!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

the quest for a good cup

to paraphrase dr. pretorious from the movie "the bride of frankenstein": "coffee: it is my only weakness!"

i have been a coffee snob for years.

long before starbucks had a shop on every-other corner and coffee became fashionable.

i have nothing against starbuck’s. their growth has made it easier to acquire high quality coffees from a variety of sources due to their ever-present presence. i kind of look at starbucks as being the in-n-out of coffee houses; far better than mc donalds but not as good as tavern on the green. when i walk into a starbucks, i expect a decent, consistent latte or cappuccino (i’ve been doing mostly cappuccinos lately when i go for a “fuller” cup of coffee).

but, when ron and i go for coffee, 4-bucks a morning begins to add up.

so, i’ve been settling for french roast; the only “bold” coffee that "coffee girl" offers. they also offer a light blend, french decaf and some kind of flavored crap for people who don’t like real coffee.

in my opinion, the french know nothing about roasting coffee.

now the italians, on the other hand, are right on the money.

the italian techniques don’t take the bean to the borderline burned stage.

italian roasts are nice and sweet and creamy, while still being “bold”.

french roast is just. . . well. . . it is burned and bitter flavored.

the last two mornings they have been out of french roast.

leaving me with a choice of light, flavored and decaf.

i alway said if i ever start drinking coffee just to wake up in the morning i would quit.

i'm resorting to pulling my own coffee and will meet ron at the beach to take our meetings.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

writing about music is like dancing about architecture

an amazingly wonderful thing happened today!

this could change my life!

i’m afraid to say anything about it at this point as not to jinx it.

so, let’s talk about music.

maybe it is the atmosphere.

maybe it is the vibe.

maybe it doesn’t matter.

ever since i hit route 1, coming out of marina heading south to the peninsula, i have listened to nothing but classical music while i’m driving.

kboq (pronounced: k-bach).

it’s a syndicated format from a satellite feed. i can tell because i’m a radio-guy, alright?

i have long loved classical music but had no classical-mentor to guide me.

i had to discover it myself through bands like emerson, lake & palmer and yes and the synthesist tomita.

over the years, my classical exposure has grown. but slowly.

that is certainly changing.

about a year ago, i made a new friend through the internet who is an amazing keyboard player. i discovered him through youtube when i found a video featuring him in an elp tribute band. this cat had keith’s licks down solid (sans knives in the keys). and let me tell you: keith’s licks are nothing like elton john’s. the medley’s that he arranged featuring elp, with a little uk thrown in for good measure, just knocked me out.

gary calame does music for the movies and tv.

he has sent me several bits that he has composed from tonal to atonal modern classical music to jazz.

the cat is hot!

i’ve spent a good part of the evening listening to a piece he is working on by franz liszt. i can’t wait to hear him play it! just the fact that he is working on the piece impresses the shit out of me. i don’t think i have ever heard a more complicated and intricate piece of piano playing.

liszt must have been mad and gary must be madder to play it!

of course he is.

he loves drag racing!

franz liszt 1811-1886

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

ain't no desert

went down to the beach this evening.

not to watch the sunset.

i think the last time the sun actually set here was two days ago.

i got back from the farmers’ market, barbecued sandwich in hand (soon to be “in mouth”), and i could hear the waves pounding against the shore.

the houses between here and the beach usually dulls the surf to just a distant resonance that could easily be mistaken for the wind in the trees.

not this evening!

this evening the sound was tremendous!

i quickly ate the meal, dumped the berries in the colander and made for the beach.

“surf city, here we come!”

the waves were far from being those massive winter storm waves that, i’m told, come up to the asphalt on the 17-mile drive. but, it was, what spalding would have called, “a perfect moment!”

there were no palm trees ripping in the wind.

my perfect moment was accentuated by cypress trees shaped by years (centuries?) of winds.

quite beautiful.

i stood up above the surf for a while before the chill of the july evening drove me back to the car.

but, i was entranced with the ever so slightly waning tide as it drove the waves over the rocks and up onto the beach.

it is not the solitude that i find in the stark beauty of the desert.

but, it’ll do just fine.

i wish spalding could have seen it.

spalding gray 1941-2004

Monday, July 23, 2007

drier and dryer

i never once saw the sun today!

the fog ruled!

i even ran up to seaside to get some more paint and i still never saw the sun.

i’m beginning to remember what it is like to live where you cannot expect a dry towel when you get out of the shower.

no! it’s not as bad as maine!

but, it sho’ ain’t “13% humidity today in the truckee meadows”!

found my cell phone.

ron had me up so early yesterday that i never pulled it off of the charger. still don’t know why i didn’t hear it ring when i walked through the house calling myself? hey: at least i still have the damn thing!

santa cruz bill came today to help (?) with the painting project. where is george costanza when you need him?

we did finish ron’s room tonight. now, we just have to do the office. but, it won’t be weeks until we can get in there. it’ll take that long just to pack up the artifacts, antiquities, oddities and obelisks.

before leaving for the dollhouse this morning to supervise the gas line installation, so we can use the dryer, i walked out of the front yard to meet a buck, doe and fawn (still speckled) just passing through.

black tail deer really are my favorite deer and it’s so nice to have them around.

i’m going to try to leash-train one so i can take it for walks to the beach.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

my day off

spent my only day off painting.

at least there is light at the end of my tunnel of woe.

all we have to do is ron’s room and bathroom and my bathroom and we’re done!

we celebrated at the dollhouse with ultra-thick (1¼”) t-bone steaks and fresh pineapple.

i think i may have lost my cell phone. i cannot find it. i’ve tried calling it and listening for the ring in the car and all over the media center.

i’m not happy about this!

what i am happy about is: somebody uploaded a bunch of videos onto youtube of a 1980 talking heads concert recorded in rome. this was one of the tours featuring adrian belew. he looks so young and just as talented as he is today! he also seems to be getting as much camera time as david byrne.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

hazards of peninsula life

after returning from the store this evening, as i drove through the country club gate, one of 5 gates allowing me access onto the area of the peninsula on which i live, i saw what appeared to be a pack of marauding dogs coming out of the fog. it was a scene from a bad horror movie come true.

it wasn’t until i got closer that i realized what i was looking at was a heard of black tail deer with several little fawns making their way through the del monte forest; probably to go graze on the grasses of one of the golf courses.

these deer are so cute! they’re much smaller than mule deer or white tail deer. the little fawns weren’t much bigger than medium sized dogs.

there are so many of them out here, and they have become so docile being around all of the homes, golfers and tourists that they are always getting hit my drivers. very sad!

all of the roads out here are narrow and circuitous. that coupled with the fog and you’ve really got to keep your eyes on the road or you’ll collect one in the grill. and that’s nothing like a quail.

just trying to drive these roads without getting lost is a challenge in itself.

when i first got here i was getting everywhere by using my gps map and following the breadcrumbs i’d left when i was running around in ron’s car. however, i’ve been leaving it at home so as not to get to reliant upon it.

3 or 4 nights ago ron and i were at the dollhouse getting susie’s computer dialed-in. since we came in separate cars, i left as soon as the ‘puter was up and running. even up on top of huckleberry hill, where the dollhouse is, the fog was incredibly thick. so, by the time i got off of the hill, it was like the proverbial pea soup.

“should i have turned right there?”

“ah. no big deal. i’ll find my way back to the beach eventually.”

“hmmm? i should have reached the beach by now?”

“ah. here’s the 17-mile drive. i’ll just take it around cypress point and home from there.”

i ended up at the complete opposite end of pebble at the carmel gate.

i gave up and followed the 17-mile drive back to the route 1 gate, which is about ¼ mile from the dollhouse and took hwy. 68 back to the country club gate and took the easy way, albeit much longer, way back.

Friday, July 20, 2007

missing the sun's goodbye

while standing in the front-backyard just now (we have two backyards) i could hear a seal barking in the not-too-distance.

the days just get more interesting here on the monterey peninsula.

i mentioned today that i would like to audition for the theater after car week is over and ron went into action! he’s ready to become my agent! i couldn’t ask for a greater proponent! this could be a rough place to try to get a principal role. i got lucky in freeport. this place is just loaded with artists and actors (clint eastwood just one of them. oh my: i just realized that i may be onstage in front of clint eastwood!). so, if i can make it here. . .

it looks like i’m now the harrison family laundry technician. i did 11 loads at the local communal washtub. somehow, i get the feeling i’m also going to be susie’s personal assistant.

my moving announcement has garnered the attention of robin; another peculiar occurrence as my life continues to make this bizarre change.

we’re still painting the media center. i feel as if i’ll be painting it for the rest of my life. the more we paint the more seems to need painting. it’s not that the house is so huge. but, the 20 foot vaulted ceilings made of rough-hewn wood is pretty tough to cover. where are those long-legged, large-breasted, doe-eyed devotees ron keeps promising me?

had dinner with ron and susie tonight at il fornaio in carmel. what a great place! it’s in an old hotel: the pine inn. the hotel was built in 1889 in the style of an elegant country inn with wood from the old tivoli opera house in san francisco. i couldn’t stop smiling all the time we were in the building. such a great vibe! ron and i were there to choose hors d’oeuvres and arrange the western automotive journalists concours d’elegance reception, of which ron is president. i thought the calamari was a little tough, but the batter was very light and tasty. the breads were very good: some kind of olive ciabatta and a very-crusty (as in crunchy) bread that tasted sourdoughish. i had the fettuccine alla bolognese made with in-house fresh pasta. oh, what a wonderful thing to have between your teeth!

as i returned to the taurus, i noticed a very familiar logo on the back of a shirt being worn by a man about 30 feet from the car. “excuse me!” i interrupted. “are you in scta?” “no!” the stranger replied! “but, i was just down there last week.” bob, and his friend erik (i think), are in town for the motorcycle races this weekend at laguna seca. well, to make a long story. . . bob wants to build an entry for bonneville (he seems enchanted with streamliners. who isn’t?) but, can’t decide on motorcycle or car. both bob and erik are going to show “the world’s fastest indian” in bob’s shop later this summer. this movie has become a religious experience for so many people who have watched it.

tony hopkins (as burt munro) and the scta logo

i keep missing the sunset by about 3 minutes. tonight, it was just a coincidence that i drove into the setting sun. but, for several nights in a row, one thing or another has kept me from reaching the beach before the orb disappears beyond the horizon. the color, however, was absolutely amazing as i drove the coastline between carmel-by-the-sea and pebble beach on the famous 17-mile drive. what a beautiful drive!

i wonder what the accumulative value is of the homes just between here and carmel? certainly in the billions! maybe in the trillions? the opulence is over-the-top!

these are my neighbors!