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Dimebag R.I.P.

A walk down memory lane

By Miguel Mouchess
Published on LatinoLA: December 11, 2004


Dimebag R.I.P.


The metal world lost an icon...?Dimebag? Darrell Abbott....38..

Who?

he was shot to death by a fan just as he was taking the stage for a concert with his new band "Damageplan" in Columbus Ohio....

Who is this? Might you ask again.....

Well, I'll tell you....

He was the former lead guitarist for the band Pantera.....

Again...who?

The band Pantera....metal rock band of the 80's and 90's....and no, I'm not talking "Metallica" metal...I'm talking real metal....as in 20 minute guitar riffs per song....as in all black and spike wearing ensembles....and no not "hair band" ballads....I'm talking about stage thrashing, drunken outbreaks each night on tour....

The real hard metal rock....stuff they would tell you to play backwards to hear the "devils plan".....

So why should I, Miguel, care about this kind of music (or as senator Daschle once called it: Noise to your ear drums)..you might be asking yourself.

Well, there's an answer to that too..

Not long ago, I took a trek into the "find myself" world and ended up making a brief stop at "Metal Lane"....now before you start laughing at the ridiculous image you're making about what I looked like back then....I'll help you out by saying "Stop"...I was no different then as I am now....its just the "Walkman" was playing the Pantera cassettes as opposed to now the CD changer playing "Sinatra"....

Here's how I was introduced....(A little walk down memory lane)

We're talking back in 1989 and 1990...my dad use to get together with some coworkers and play all-night poker sessions...In that time my ?non-existent? social life included staying up late on Saturday nights to watch SNL... occasional ?sleep overs? with the neighborhood kids in make shift tents in the lawns of friend's houses throughout South Gate...(gated of course)...and on a weekly basis included a double feature at the Allen movie theater for "Movies for guys who like movies"....but that was it...

Hey...I couldn?t complain....at least I was getting out on occasion...with tight supervision of course...but out.....

Well, the weekend poker games my dad would go to where my "guilty pleasures"....see I?d go with him whenever he played (which was about once a month) to add a little bit of variety to the "otherwise usual" social activity South Gate had to offer...I even came up with a well crafted system to making it fun...and it worked out to a "T"..

My dad would leave Friday night about 8 (after dinner with the family)....and his friend lived in Westminster, CA...the OC's answer to "blue collar" community...his friends all arrived, like clockwork, at the same time...they even had strange nicknames to make it easier to remember by....

Names like:
"Cucharita" (little spoon), because come lunch time at work, this one would take a little spoon full of everyone else's leftover lunches...
"Condorito" (little condor), because he liked to read the famed Mexican comic book when he made visits to the toilet...
"Pele" because of the resemblance to the greatest soccer player that ever lived..
"Bolon" (round one) because he resembled a round ball...and who could forget
"El Chato" (shorty) because of his height...(owner of the house - Real name "Rene")

My dad also had his nickname "Moncheri"...why? Well because no one could pronounce our Last Name....Mouchess.....at the time there was the "Monchichi" craze too...you remember the little brown boy and girl bears?

My mom and sisters would laugh their hearts out from all the references my dad would make about his friends....more so about their nicknames....

OK...so back to the story...and Pantera:

So these men would congregate at "El Chato's" house for a round of poker...well since it was obviously important to leave that place with the same amount of money you would come with, they had a rule that stated: no one outside the players should be entering the play area while the game is in session....this included the wives and kids.

Now about the game area....my dad's friend decked this place out...had the "fixed" black box satellite system, a full bar and espresso machine, a round card table with a green felt, and a pool table...let us not forget the art work on the walls that included "Budweiser girls" and "Born to Lose" prints....it was a gentlemen's den....ahh the good ole days...

As for the master plan....look up about two paragraphs up, last reference...."No one outside the players should enter the ply area" including "wives and kids"...We (the kids) simply followed the instructions -?Stay out!!?..stay out all night that is. But not before catching the latest episode of Miami Vice.

And so I would get together with the other kids and we'd go "out in the town" and have our own social gathering....have our own nicknames...and have our own "games".

Conveniently the house was located next to a shopping center off the 405 (Springdale exit)...they had a In-N-Out, pool hall, and donut shop on the same side....and across the way was the 24 hour bowling alley....next time you go down the 405 check it out...it's still there....

Well, that was a treat for us...We painted to whole neighborhood ?brown? with all the troublesome activity we would cause....everything from sneaking into the pool hall (which by the way is the reason I'm at expert level with that game)...we?d take the allowance money to the bowling alley and last all night on the Super Mario Brother?s....and this is where I first "egged" my first business establishment; the donut man got the worst of it.

Through it all..it was the late 80's...it was when I was discovering myself and it was fun...big ups to my boy Renato, who's the son of "el Chato"...we made such a good team.

ok...so Miguel...where's the Pantera story??

Hmm, well:

Once the petty criminal activity and hell raising would get old we?d always visit a neighbor of Renato's by the name of "Frankie"....now this latino, 25 at the time, had a replica "gentleman?s den"...and he too stayed up all night...but different to poker this place was notorious for the ice chilled keg, more risque poster art work, and the "fooseball"....and we were always welcomed....

the simple rule about the "intense" foosball games here: Win ~ you drink and Lose ~ you down it...house rules...and instead of porno-laced satellite TV we had a loud, 2 speaker, turntable, and cassette player blasting.....and what was it playing? Yup, you guessed it - the heaviest metal you could find...sharp razor blade metal. Bands like: Megadeath, Ozzy Osbourne's Black Sabbath, Zeppelin...and last but not least: Pantera...(yes folks! this is where I was introduced to Diamond Darrell).

Frankie was all metal...24/7....so much so that he even named his first child "Vince"....as in reference to Vince Neil, front man of Motley Crue.

My friend Renato also had the metal craze in him and named his German Shepherd: "Saba"...as in reference to "Black Sabbath"....he had a purple 1977 Dodge Van, which had a dipped front end and raised the back...it included a waterbed...and get this: "purple curtains" for the love of the "Showtime" Lakers team of the 80's....we called it the "Ghetto mystery machine"...and it still exist...

for a few years it was all the same....never changed...eventually as all good things, it came to an end.

I was introduced to the nightlife and social scene out here and and my friend Renato moved on and got married....damn, those were the days....

Ahhh a little trip down memory lane....

I think i'll give my friend a call tonight and reminisce""""

Rest in Peace... Dimebag and Rene....


About Miguel Mouchess:
http://www.socialjournal.com/users/mouchessgracias




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