Happy Birthday Dick Spunk

Posted on 9:55 PM by Tony Spunk

Back in the summer of 1973, when I was nine years old, my dad, Antonio Spunk II and his brother Ricardo "Dick" Spunk, used to have a kind of faux mariachi act on the Vegas strip. They had sombreros with shiny bits on, they had Spanish guitars and they had shirts that would make a baby cry. They played all kinds of dives and basements and occasionally they'd get to debut at some glittery gala at Caesar's, on like a Tuesday night, opening for some old lush in a sparkly dress (and sometimes the occasional woman too!).

My dad was a mediocre musician, more into gambling and martinis and fast women than actually playing his instrument although you could argue he played his instrument plenty if you get my meaning. Plus he had an unusually small head which caused a whole bucket full of problems keeping that damn sombrero upright. Some nights, mid song, his giant sombrero would slip down over his eyes and the audience, who'd spent three hours downing cheap Scotch, would spend ten minutes wondering why they were watching a giant hat play a guitar.

My uncle Dick though, he was a genius. A man's man. A guy so comfortable in his own testosterone he didn't think twice about wearing pink ruffles on his shirt or sewing sequins on his matador pants. It was Dick Spunk who taught me to play piano when I was eleven. He taught me to read music by a complicated procedure where he compared various music notes to a woman's anatomy. I never quite got the hang of that philosophy (he did drink a fuck of a lot) but even now, when I get close enough to a lady to twiddle her crochets, I still expect to hear a B#.

So this pina colada I'm holding in my hand right now? It's for my uncle Dick Spunk. Still a player after all these years. Happy birthday Dick.