It’s been many moons since we last visited the Mammoth Mansion.
Since that time, the Looney Babe has gotten married and had children. Big Balls Billy pulled a Joe DiMaggio and has left and gone away. So has Tony Barrett.
Elizabeth Tenney is still around, but she doesn’t spend much time at the mansion anymore. She often busies herself at the Gateway Monument, volunteering to take photographs of happy families.
Last week, one family actually stopped at the monument, but that’s just because that’s where they happened to get pulled over by a Mono County Sheriff’s Deputy. They weren’t very happy. The Mono County Sheriff’s deputy said they’d been doing 27 mph in a 25 mph zone on Old Mammoth Road. During the course of the interrogation, Dad acknowledged he had just exited the drive through at Carl’s Jr. This led to a complete evacuation and full search of the Chevy Tahoe SUV. An empty 44 oz. soft drink cup was taken into evidence.
Ms. Tenney, with her usual tact and grace, explained to the Sheriff’s Deputy that the ban on servings of sugary beverages greater than 16 oz. was not a local, state or even federal law. It had been a New York City law before being ruled unconstitutional.
The deputy would have apologized, but that is against department code. Instead, he explained that he had been tricked by the internet and that the stop was justified because the Carl’s Jr. parking lot is a known hangout for potheads with the munchies – thus, probable cause.
“I thought I was stopped for speeding.”
“That, too,” chimed in the deputy.
The family dog then pooped right at the base of the monument.
While the deputy wrote a citation for violation of Mono County leash laws and defecafacement of public property, Ms. Tenney took a splendid photo of the family enjoying its last trip to Mammoth.
But this has nothing to do with the Mammoth Mansion, which, well … doesn’t exist anymore. It was foreclosed upon and then sold to a guy from Palos Verdes who rents it out on airbnb.
But for the sake of continuity, we’ll call the new digs (a modest home on Manzanita) a “mansion.” Its current inhabitants, ironically enough, are all running for seats on the Mammoth Lakes Town Council.
There is Ken Murray, Manager of the Charthouse, John Wentwoth, Executive Director of MLTPA, Deb Pierrel, a partner in Cle Hospitality and Joe Parrino, Master of his own Domain.
Parrino: Let me tell you, I’m gonna thump each and every one of you like a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest.
Wentworth: Joe, the metaphor isn’t about kicking our asses like it’s gonna hurt … the saying actually goes, “Busier than a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest.”
Parrino: You and your metaphors. Is a metaphor dangerous? Not as dangerous as motocross. Or skiing off a cliff.
Wentworth: You’re right. A metaphor in and of itself isn’t too dangerous. But a mixed metaphor …
Parrino: Do you participate in danger sports, John?
Wentworth: Only at night.
Parrino: How about the rest of you?
Murray: I’ve served Bananas Foster … bare-handed.
Pierrel. I married Fred.
The other three nod their heads in defeat. Deb has uttered the last word on danger.
Pierrel: So John, what’s your campaign strategy?
Wentworth: You know, I’m gonna play to my strengths – my fingerprints are all over town with the awesome signage and wayfinding MLTPA has installed. This isn’t Maine. You CAN get there from here. There’s nothing like being at Mammoth Creek Park and looking up and seeing a sign and knowing that you’re on the Town Loop just 2.1 miles from Eagle Lodge.
Pierrel. Okay. So what happens when you get to Eagle Lodge?
Wentworth. Well, you know, um …
Parrino: It’s like a Bridge to Nowhere! Remember that? Sarah Palin … you know, she’s still pretty hot.
Murray. I don’t think the signage is effective at all. I’ve been here five years and I still haven’t been able to find Suite Z.
Parrino. So Ken, what exactly is your campaign strategy?
Murray. Well, since I’ve never been seen outside of the Charthouse, I’m adopting the Sugimura strategy. I just want people to view my candidacy as whatever they want it to be – a blank canvas if you will.
Wentworth: And if you get elected …
Murray: The first thing I’d do is switch the location of the meetings to the Charthouse, so I’d know where to find them. How about you, Deb?
Pierrel: Yeah, I think you have a pretty decent happy hour. I’d agree to that.
Murray: I mean, what would you do, if elected?
Pierrel: Well, what I would do is talk and talk and talk in circles until everyone was pretty confused. And then I’d make a motion and it would pass because no one would really understand what the motion was about and they’d just vote to get me to be quiet. So then we’d have a whole bunch of new ordinances and directives!
Wentworth: What kind of ordinances and directives?
Pierrel: Efficient and smart ones designed to streamline government!
Wentworth: Could you give an example or two?
Pierrel: I don’t want to give anything away, but I can assure you that as a woman, I’m the smartest person in the field by default.
Murray: So Joe, not that I attend meetings or anything, but why did you go on that rant at Council where you said anyone over 50 is worthless?
Wentworth: You’re like Abbie Hoffman, just fifty years later with a twenty-year extension of the time window.
Parrino: Who’s Abbie Hoffman? See, you guys are all so old you make references that young people wouldn’t even grasp. What I meant is that you’re as old as you feel. I’m just a 15-year old trapped in a 51-year old’s body. I’m a 51-year old kid.
There’s a knock at the door. It is Mayor Wood.
Mayor: I just want to wish you all good luck. It takes a brave person to run for office in this town. I remember the first time I ran for Council. It was the spring of ‘98 …
Parrino: 1898. Harharhar.
Wood: Joe, I don’t want to have to run for Council, but when I see you, it almost leaves me no choice.
Parrino: Oh yeah. Well, I know what’s in your garage, and it’s not a dirt bike. Ken, what’s in your garage?
Murray: I don’t know. I don’t spend a lot of time there. I’m usually at the Charthouse.
Parrino: Speaking of which, can I have my old job back?