Info on Greg "The Hand"

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pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Original Post - Apr 24, 2013 - 07:44pm PT
Anyone remember Greg from Stoney Point, used to hang out with "The Fish" I think?" Last time I saw him was the early 90's and used to have lots of duck tape on his person. Had a thick English Accent.
I'm Rick James, Bitch

Social climber
Up in it and down on it
Apr 24, 2013 - 07:50pm PT
I know the man! Fake accent, big ass hand, talked sh#t all the time at Stoney and JTree. Hung with a guy called Dave Katz and his crew. Weird dude and I should know CIRJB!!!!!!!!((99
Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
Apr 24, 2013 - 07:56pm PT
Now we go down yet another Rabbit Hole.

Nice enough guy. Must have been hard to go through life with a UniMitt.

Kalimon

Social climber
Ridgway, CO
Apr 24, 2013 - 10:14pm PT
We met some dude in Camp 4 around 1980 with a big swollen hand . . . It must be the same guy.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 25, 2013 - 12:57am PT
what was his last name?
was he the official fish belay slave?
climber bob

Social climber
maine
Apr 25, 2013 - 06:11am PT
he lived at dick richardsons place in squaw @1981..we called him the fist..dont know his last name..
Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Apr 25, 2013 - 07:42am PT
Met him in the valley early 80s.

Don't remember an English accent.

I do remember that some people didn't like him. Seemed okay to me for the most part.

That hand could be a huge disadvantage in thin cracks!
can't say

Social climber
Pasadena CA
Apr 25, 2013 - 08:12am PT
The Hand aka Bearamiah to 24th Decadohedron
TwistedCrank

climber
Dingleberry Gulch, Ideeho
Apr 25, 2013 - 08:42am PT
The guy was generically engineered for the Dihedral Wall, which favored left-handed nailing.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 25, 2013 - 11:40am PT
Lol! i heard he was the king when it came to "Old-aid lines"..
would love to see an ole picture.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 25, 2013 - 03:15pm PT
All sorts of crazy stories surrounded the guy
thanks russ! i want to read about some of those crazy stories.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 25, 2013 - 05:34pm PT
anyone have any details involving Allen Placo a.k.a waco placo tackeling a curry security guard chasing the hand?

any truths to this?
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 26, 2013 - 11:42am PT
I had heard the security guard was being over amorous with the Hand and Placo thought he was intervening on a possible rape.

fish this has got to be an classic yosemite story one which has been forgotten. if you can share stories i'd love it. the hand and placo!
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 26, 2013 - 03:13pm PT
Dr F wrote:
He would walk the streets and act like a climber

more like he was looking for the "ole aid line" with a british accent.
thank's dr f.

p.s. if the hand and placo read this i hope they chime in! stoney point could always use historical beta and the ole locals to be recognized.
Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
Apr 26, 2013 - 03:23pm PT
Allen Placo.

Ya! He was a cool, very high energy dood. Recall he was a high caliber road bike racer in the late 70's. Good climber too.
KP Ariza

climber
SCC
Apr 26, 2013 - 03:28pm PT
then there was Zubie, an acid head climber that worked in a climber store in Reno

Man, there's a blast from the past. Zubi was in tow with myself and the late Dick "Skippy" Richardson on a few trips to Calaveras Dome in the early '80's. While Skippy and I took turns stancing out bolts on run out slabs, Zubi passed the day toking fatties and conversing with the trees and the wild life. If I remember correctly he was in a terrible motorcycle accident around that time. Hope he's okay.

Never met Greg but I remember hearing stories of the infamous "hand". Always wondered if it was an advantage on certain crack routes. More likely not given the consistent nature of Yosemite cracks.
Hankster

Social climber
Golden, CO
Apr 26, 2013 - 03:35pm PT
then there was Zubie, an acid head climber that worked in a climber store in Reno, with his hot hippy chick girl friend,
a normal guy, who I worked with sometimes
and then the Hand

He was in his punk rocker phase, and is room was covered with wacked out graffiti on the walls, and his only possession was a blanket.
He would walk the streets and act like a climber, though he did very little climbing.

Holy shitballs!!! Dr F is a climber that just added to a climbing thread?!!! Raaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad!!!! I seriously didn't know you climbed Dr. That post was a neat suprise to me. Carry on!
Brandon-

climber
The Granite State.
Apr 26, 2013 - 03:41pm PT
I think Dr F even has a boulder named for him. Or a problem, or something.
looking sketchy there...

Social climber
Latitute 33
Apr 26, 2013 - 04:01pm PT
The Boxer named a scabby problem The Fry Problem, after Dr. F, because the good Dr failed on it for weeks and finally gave up. I don't think he has done it to this day. It might be V0- or something.

Your killing me here Russ.

___

I do remember Greg and was, like many others, amazed that he picked up a British accent after only a relatively short stint in the British Isles. Seemed like a decent bloke, but only knew him in passing.
Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
Apr 26, 2013 - 05:49pm PT
Dr F- i think Russ wanted to know more about your first-hand knowledge of the Hand's enlarged groinage region
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 26, 2013 - 09:54pm PT
Dr f when it comes to hot hippie chicks on north shore was the hand a good wingman when u were roomates?
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Apr 26, 2013 - 10:04pm PT
Did a body recovery up here a number of years ago...out in the vicinity of the hot tubs.....subject was wearing an oversized pea coat.

Let me do some records research...
WBraun

climber
Apr 26, 2013 - 10:07pm PT
I remember that guy "The Hand".

Always wondered where does Russ find these type of people.

But he's nothing.

Compared to ....

"The K dorm Flasher"

LOL
ms55401

Trad climber
minneapolis, mn
Apr 26, 2013 - 11:54pm PT
I'm a non-participant, know very few -- really, know no one at all -- of the parties, but I have to say I find this enormously entertaining.

btw, I'm known as "The Cock" locally, and in certain pockets of South and North Dakota.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 27, 2013 - 11:42am PT
"The K dorm Flasher

what's that about werner? was this person a member of the stoney point crew?
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Apr 27, 2013 - 11:54am PT
btw, I'm known as "The Cock" locally, and in certain pockets of South and North Dakota.

The Reservation police are gonna get you sooner or later.

DMT
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 29, 2013 - 11:35am PT
he wasn't a good wing man either
ahh! i figured he'd be a good winger!
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 30, 2013 - 01:16am PT
2bad no pictures of greg the hand!

pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 1, 2013 - 12:47pm PT
Another question for u Dr f .
Then who was ur wing man :-)
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
May 1, 2013 - 01:48pm PT
Why is Russ deleting posts?
Russ why are you deleting posts?

We live for the gut busting shizzle you churn out ... Just saying.

Of course I remember the hand as well. Dr. F is probably right in that he wasn't such a great wing man and we rarely saw him actually climb. Russ tended to be a "snapper magnet" as Mari once said; but I don't think he actually hung out with The Hand that much.

Long before I got out here to Colorado, I'm thinking early 80s, The Hand lived in a little shack at the mouth of Eldorado Canyon. Other than this reportage concerning his domicile, there's never been much about him in the local Boulder lore.

Not to say he never climbed; prolly loved it much as any who entered the community. Another lost soul in the end. The enlarged hand had to be a rough go.
TwistedCrank

climber
Dingleberry Gulch, Ideeho
May 1, 2013 - 03:09pm PT
I remember him wanting 20 bucks to tell you where he left a 2 1/2 friend he bailed on - one of the original half sizers. He was leaving for LA the next day. It was Desperate Straights. I can't recall who ended up retrieving it. But I can't recall much of anything anymore anyway.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 2, 2013 - 01:01am PT
Since all you faeries like to think this is a virtual campfire, my written words are now just whispers carried away on the smoke of combusting terminal bullsh#t.

ohh k! thanks anyway russ!

Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
May 2, 2013 - 12:05pm PT
Got it!
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 2, 2013 - 02:41pm PT
Dr f thanks for not erasing ur sh#t. Just thought id started a good thread . Wanted the young talent to get to know their past stoney pointers. Russ maybe ill Buy some of ur star studded straps.
FRUMY

Trad climber
SHERMAN OAKS,CA
May 2, 2013 - 05:25pm PT
The hand ---- That's funny ----- that dude hated me.

He would go around Stoney doing problems that had been getting done for years & rating them 4 grades harder than they were.

A stoney Point 10b would become 11b-c

I'd call him on it & he would turn red and blow up at me ---- I'd do the problem & say something like ---- Really man, I'm not sure that even makes 10b, might be 10a. Couple of times I know he wanted to hit me.

He finally got smart & stop trying to boulder with us, & than he became nice. We
would wave to each other & say hi, as we walk past each other.

Never ran into him climbing anywhere else.
He really was not a bad guy.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 3, 2013 - 07:18pm PT
Thanks frumy. Ask David Katz he has never seen the hand climb..only hanging out.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 8, 2013 - 05:27pm PT
bump for the hand!
greg allen hope u chime in one day!
Off White

climber
Tenino, WA
May 8, 2013 - 06:24pm PT
That was a good question Tarbaby, I came late to this thread after Russ had removed all his input, but there were enough references and quotes that his footprints were fossilized in the thread, like a Parasaurolophus crossing some antediluvian salt marsh.

Perhaps the Fish has turned into an adult concerned about posterity and is pruning his online tidbits to control his legend? Ah well, we'll always have the various arms of the Mussy Nebula...
snyd

Sport climber
Lexington, KY
May 8, 2013 - 07:54pm PT
Since we are talking about characters on the scene...
"Karl with a K" has to be the oddest. The only guy I knew who was brave enough to partner up with him 1:1 was Shipley. Everyone else would go in a large group and even then it was dicey.
FRUMY

Trad climber
SHERMAN OAKS,CA
May 8, 2013 - 09:03pm PT
By Karl, do you mean the karl that could mantle really well & wore a handkerchief on his head & in the early 80's drove an orange 914 & went to school to be a psychologist or something & moved to Kansas.
Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
May 8, 2013 - 09:39pm PT
nooooooooo Frumy...

Kark with a K was one of the real oddballs. No 914 for him.

In reality, he was likely suffering from some disability (for which he received a stipend from the state or Feds that allowed him his dirtbag lifestyle...).

He was exceptionally bright (so insists Dick Cilley) and rumor has it he perhaps got whatever afflicted him under control and had/ has a wife and kid?

The one time ('85?) I went to visit the choss crag Eagle Rock off the 134 for a bouldering session (just prior to attending a bachelor party next door), I found Karl happily bivied. He resumed whatever conversation we last had years prior and spun the conversation into Lord knows what thread that unraveled contextually into the cosmos...
Bullwinkle

Boulder climber
May 8, 2013 - 11:47pm PT
Russ, I think you're talking about The Hand, he was a very talented artist. . .
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 9, 2013 - 01:57am PT
russ wrote

May 8, 2013 - 08:50pm PT

Winkie.... uh.... no .... the Hand was a drooling crayola guy compared to Karl with a K, regardless of his prowess in the crayola realm.

Karl was flat out one of the best artists in an illustration/comic book type style I have ever seen. Really... and I was an art major. The dude could really draw and would make postcard sized art and sell them to sustain his Valley lifestyle. Damn, I wish I'd bought some of those, but of course I had zero money too.... 'tis a pity.

ur talking about Karl conklin right?

russ u said it best about greg allen with his glass's duct tape with pea coat.

i guess this is russ as a climber visionary..
chez

Social climber
chicago ill
May 9, 2013 - 11:13am PT
Karl with a K.
He came to our campfire in the 80s and asked if he could put a big rock in our fire, which we obliged. Then chatted for a bit and then too the rock to his site and buried it, and placed his tent on it.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 10, 2013 - 01:00am PT
russ wrote:

May 9, 2013 - 07:54am PT


ur talking about Karl conklin right?

No, another Karl.
duncan

climber
London, UK
May 10, 2013 - 03:42am PT
I do remember Greg and was, like many others, amazed that he picked up a British accent after only a relatively short stint in the British Isles. Seemed like a decent bloke, but only knew him in passing.

I also remember Greg as a decent bloke and have a vague memory of climbing something on the Apron with him (definitely not Something On The Apron). There were a few Brits loitering in Tahoe and Yosemite at that time so perhaps the accent got a head start from us.
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
May 10, 2013 - 11:21am PT


What a fuking HILARIOUS thread...

"the HAND"...



LMAO!!!...

the nicknames and the reasons we get them...
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 10, 2013 - 03:44pm PT
Dr f I wouldn't call Russ the fish a pussy. Although I do wonder..he did this deleting bullshit thing on the stoney thread. He posted a bad ass bachar photo then removed it. Very weird. Maybe he thinks of himself as a celebrity from la..
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 10, 2013 - 04:57pm PT
dr F *Getting back to wing man, it wold only seem natural that yo and the Hand being roommates the north shore in the early 80s surrounded by hot hippie chicks, British accents, and hot tub parties as your earlier posts say make one come to this :-)
So give it up Dr F.
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
May 10, 2013 - 05:47pm PT


can't say

Social climber
Pasadena CA
May 11, 2013 - 11:50am PT
Dr. F, that's cause Charlie was way cooler then you ever dreamed you could be.
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
May 11, 2013 - 01:16pm PT


"All I'm saying is that HAND was pretty big."...


I did NOT know, "the HAND", but have heard some stoires (Would love to hear more as I think the nickname alone is fuking funny as hell!!!)...

But I found this photo and wondered if by chance, it was him???...

...


???...
FRUMY

Trad climber
SHERMAN OAKS,CA
May 11, 2013 - 03:53pm PT
What ever happened to Charlie ? I have not seen him in a couple of decades.

Anyone have a picture of Karl with a K ?
can't say

Social climber
Pasadena CA
May 12, 2013 - 07:44am PT
It's what drove me from Tahoe in 1980 Dr. F.
climber bob

Social climber
maine
May 12, 2013 - 09:39am PT
http://www.gregallenpainter.com/ could be him...
FRUMY

Trad climber
SHERMAN OAKS,CA
May 12, 2013 - 10:38am PT
No that's not him.
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
May 12, 2013 - 11:03am PT


I wasn't sure...

Bullwinkle

Boulder climber
May 12, 2013 - 11:06am PT
Sounds like him, as I've said an excellent artist.
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
May 12, 2013 - 11:27am PT


Just checked the dudes webpage and art...

Interesting stuff...

pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 12, 2013 - 11:29am PT
was on the phone with banny the other day and asked about the hand. one of banny's first trips to stoney he met the hand!

Dr F looks like were getting closer to having a picture of the greg allen.
Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
May 12, 2013 - 12:32pm PT
That looks like him...
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 12, 2013 - 02:29pm PT
WOW! now that is kool.

glad the climbing community got together on the taco.

we need Loomis to identify for sure cuzz i heard he and loomis were tight.

now we just need the hand to chime in.
Bad Climber

climber
May 12, 2013 - 02:55pm PT
Yeah, Locker, that hand pic? Ooooooogy! Serious ANTI-chick magnet. Yikes. It's amazing the different forms the human body can take. That one is freaky, and I'll have nightmares for the rest of my life.

Thanks for that!

BAd
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
May 12, 2013 - 02:58pm PT


"Serious ANTI-chick magnet"...

Not so sure about that...

That's one hell of a middle finger...

climber bob

Social climber
maine
May 12, 2013 - 03:23pm PT
BINGO!
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 12, 2013 - 05:23pm PT
http://www.supertopo.com/climbers-forum/971616/STONEY-POINT

hopefully greg can get online and reconnect with stoney pointers!
dickcilley

Social climber
Wisteria Ln.
May 14, 2013 - 07:11am PT
What the Fish said about Karls art is verbatim what I tell everyone .I can´t understand why anyone would have anything bad to say about Karl.He had a mental disorder.The hand had a physical defect.Some people never growup.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 19, 2013 - 07:53pm PT
This is some seriously funny sh#t, some of it is even true. Pyro: I knew "The Fish," but we didn't hang out together. Lots of duct tape? That's news to me. I'm Rick James, Bitch: As far as a fake accent goes I lived abroad for about six years, two in London and I think four in Sheffield where I lived with John Allen's brother Rob in a semi-detatched house on Chippinghouse Road. We lived next door to John (who was a pioneer of the 5.12 grade on gritstone back when 5.12 meant something,) Steve Bancroft, who was John's partner in crime and a pioneer of hard routes on grit and limestone, and handsome Nick Stokes who was a dead ringer for Max Headroom. I wasn't faking an accent I'm sorry to report. In the same way that a Glaswegian goes from indecipherable to Queen's English after a few years of immersion here in The States (and without the benefit of elocution lessons no less,) I picked up quite a lot of a guttural Yorks accent when I lived there, and it stuck for a time after my return. The only remnant of those days is that on occasion I'll still say "us" when referring to myself in the singular, as in: Can you spare us a bit of chalk?" instead of "Can I bum some chalk?" It just leaks out without any conscience effort to affect it. Believe me, even during my formative years I was perfectly aware that nothing came across worse than faking an accent in an effort to impress. During the coalescing punk rock years of '80-'82 in L.A. I'd run into to guys trying to get laid by doing that when they were talking to girls, and even if done seamlessly if you found out the guy had never stepped foot in the U.K. he immediately donned a crown that spelled "Idiot," in giant letters. After my repatriation around '87-'88 my sister used to give me sh#t delivered in highly nasal Val-speak: "Eh my Gawwwwd! What's up with the fake accent?" "Woot fake eccent?" would be my response. I couldn't hear it, believe it or nut. As far as "Talked sh#t all the time," I'll plead partially guilty. I was given to talking a lot, and thought I knew a lot like many immature people. I wouldn't call it "shit" per se, in that I didn't go around slandering people either behind their back or to their face. It was a bad enough charateristic that Mike Beck and Hans Luppiner and their crew (who I climbed with occasionally,) called me "The Doctor," because I thought I knew a lot of climbing information. It had occasional unforeseen bad consequences. I got hauled up "Poodles are People Too," by the talented Toivo Kodas, brother of bad-ass Vaino Kodas, and he walked up the route like it was nothing-- in EBs and without cams of any kind. I told Hans the route was a walk, and how could I know otherwise? I don't think I even managed all the moves. Hans went up on it and found God. Said I'd nearly killed him. I definitely felt awful about it and learned to be more circumspect when blabbing about routes I couldn't do. I knew Dave katz, who was better known as "The Inflatable Man," possibly in part because he'd been at the weight bench for years, absolutely because of the way he talked himself up. He had quite an ego for a middling 5.10 climber. I didn't hang out with him, never did a pitch together. Dave hung out with "The Tape Brothers," if I recall. They were two guys who came to J-Tree and climbed nothing but cracks with prefabricated duct tape gloves that were reusable. Swellymon: Thank you for the even-handed assessment of my deportment, and yeah growing up with a Congenital Lymphedema certainly did suck when I was young. Kids are a lot of fun and I got into a lot of fights (something I was never particularly good at or enjoyed,) because of it. I was at Alexander Hamilton High School in '78 which had a student body that was about 80% Black, and I remember being surrounded by a knot of fifteen to twenty kids all excitedly shouting "Check out Nigga's hand! Check out Nigga's hand!" and jumping up on each others shoulders to get a glimpse of "Nigga's hand!" It was awful no doubt and led to a lot of insecurity in my makeup and a definite sense of disadvantage along with an "It's me against the world," attitude when I was young. Dr. F: I didn't live on the North Shore of Lake Tahoe in '82, and I hadn't lived in England yet so hadn't had an opportunity to learn how to "fake" an accent. Maybe you're talking about later after in the decade after I returned, but I honestly can't remember anyone giving me sh#t-- at least not to my face. Places I lived on Tahoe's North Shore in '82 were at the late Dick Richardson's parent's home in Squaw Valley, in a tube tent behind Christy Hill Restaurant where I worked, also in Squaw Vally, a few nights at Greg Lilly's house in Alpine Meadows, and lastly with a guy who was a chef at Christy Hill named Kim and his fiancee in Dollar Hill (not certain if that's North or West Shore.) I also lived on the West Shore but that's a moot point here. Kalimon: Yeah, that would have been me. Pyro: Last name: Allen. Never did a pitch with The Fish. Well sh#t, Bob Parrot. Hello. Randisi: Yeah no accent because I hadn't lived abroad yet. I definitely had a grating character to some, I'm sure if I met myself as a youth now I'd find myself fairly obnoxious. You're correct in that my hand was a huge disadvantage in thin cracks. Kevin Thaw hauled me up Butterballs like a sack of dead fish. On the other hand I got locks in inch and a quarter cracks like Horseshoes and Hand Grenades (which I wasn't strong enough to do,) I could cup three-inch fist cracks like that of the "Midget Chimney" on Bridalveil East which I did with Rick Sylvester, and actually managed without falling possibly/probably do to my hand advantage. cant say: That's pretty funny, that is the shape of my hand balled into a fist. Twisted Crank: Do you mean genetically engineered? That's true I was made for the Dihedral because I nailed left-handed, though I'm mostly ambidextrous. I've got to return to the commission I'm working on, but hope I've cleared some of this up. I'll return and continue with this thread, and Pyro the story about Alan tackling Ben Yonan, head of Curry Security and future Federal Prison inmate is true, and one of the epic stories from my youth in The Valley. I'll tell you all the sordid details when I return.
Kalimon

Social climber
Ridgway, CO
May 19, 2013 - 07:59pm PT
Thanks for posting Fistmon! Those were the best times in Camp 4 and the Valley and you were one of the colorful and sociable characters. I am glad I was fortunate enough to meet you.

Take care of yourself.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 19, 2013 - 08:04pm PT
Aw f*#k, I didn't catch this at the start of the thread. Yeah that's me. I paint-- it's what I should have been doing all those years I was trying to climb. I have some funny stories I'll share at some point. That hand appears to be an Elephantiasis which is caused by a Filarial worm which enters the body via a mosquito vector. It settles in lymph tissue and this poor individual has had the worm settle in the lymph tissue located near his left armpit where it's blocking the flow of lymphatic fluid. My condition is a Congenital Lymphedema and is nothing like that in severity. There are far worse images online of Elephantiasis. Remember the Butthole Surfers album? Balls in a wheelbarrow. For a good time call...
Watusi

Social climber
Newport, OR
May 19, 2013 - 10:23pm PT
Wow this thread brings back old memories...
KP Ariza

climber
SCC
May 19, 2013 - 11:46pm PT
Yes it does MP. I used to buy gear from Greg Lilly at his home "mountain shop" in Alpine the very first year I started climbing. Haven't thought about that dude since. Super nice English guy. Wonder what's up with him these days.

Greg, I started climbing with Skippy and Urmas around '83. Skippy had some good things to say about you. That Squaw house had quite an approach up a flight of 60 stairs or so. Especially after a day of climbing and of course, burning the herbs. Skip was good folks.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 20, 2013 - 12:12am PT
Some corrections on Paul "Zubie" Azubalis. I knew Zubie pretty well having lived with him briefly after living in "The House of God" on Tahoe's west shore ghetto Tahoma. The House of God btw was Carol Moyer (who sadly fell to her death on the Tangerine Trip in I believe '83,) housemother and girlfriend to fellow God-squad member John Allen (who helped pioneer 5.12 on gritstone,) Kiwi Jeff Shrimpton, Duncan (who I suspect is "London Climber" on this thread,) and Matt, neither of whose last names can I recall in my advanced years. All house denizens were fairly hard-core born again Christians except myself who had to repair to the porch in sub-freezing weather to smoke a joint. The Brits were all very nice blokes as it were, and Carol was a sweet person. By the way it was a two bedroom house with six of us in it, John and Carol in one room and Jeff, Duncan, and Matt in the other with me surfing downstairs, but I digress...

Zubie was no stoner or acid burnout, although I can't be certain his seemingly fractured character wasn't the result of having taken acid long before I met him in the Valley around '80. He never relayed any stories that would lead me to believe that was the case, and after all he had been an Eagle Scout of all things. He had a fairly wild way about him, a purely manic laugh that came seemingly out of nowhere, and he was horribly accident prone.

A partial list of his accidents were: Falling water skiing on Lake Tahoe, which resulted in a pinched nerve in an arm that rendered it useless for a year. Falling ice climbing and hitting the ground from 60 to 80 feet which knocked him out for six hours (this was before we met and I suspect inaugurated the spacey yet frenetic nature that was his character.) Worst of all: Riding his mountain bike down Highway 50 from Spooner Summit he came around a corner at a speed of around 50 mph (according to Zubie,) and he collided with a Carson City utility truck of some type that was parked in the middle of the road, The accident left him in a coma for six weeks, and after that his character became really fractured.

Zubie was a really nice guy that would give you the shirt off his back, and he always had beautiful girlfriends. When i returned from England around '88 I was at loose ends, and divided my time between speed fueled obsessive-compulsive sex and going to hardcore punk shows with my sixteen year-old girlfriend in Los Angeles, climbing in The Valley, and hanging out at Zubie's bicycle/climbing shop Spooner Mountain Sports in Carson City, Nevada. I also stayed with him and his gorgeous wife (whose name for the life of me escapes me,) on L Street in Virginia City. The one-dimensional podunk folks in Carson city were all sure Zubie was on drugs and I know for a fact he didn't even smoke weed.

Zubie eventually lost his shop due to non-existent bookkeeping practices, and the last time I saw him was around 2005 at the Zephyr Bar in Reno. I hate to say it but the knock-outs and coma had taken their toll and Zubie wasn't the same. He was there with his plain-looking, heavy set girlfriend, who seemed to double as his nurse. He was practically drooling is how I remember him the last time I ran into him, and it left me fairly depressed for a few days. If he's still around I hope he's okay because he was kind, generous, and would never hurt a fly.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 20, 2013 - 12:19am PT
Greg Lilly went to prison for attacking another English guy whose name was I believe "Strappo," with a baseball bat as Strappo slept. He thought the guy was sleeping with his wife and he nearly beat him to death. Gnarly. I used to buy gear from him too, and he let me stay with him from time to time when I was homeless. I would never have guessed he had that sort of violence in him.
KP Ariza

climber
SCC
May 20, 2013 - 12:34am PT
Damn, Lilly wasn't quite the docile flower he portrayed himself to be it turns out....

Edited: When I met Zube he certainly smoked alright. How could you not kickin' it with Skip? I don't mean that in a bad way. Dope was just a necessity on those climbing trips. Almost more so than food and water. Zube was along when we did a new route on Hammer Dome at Calaveras in '85 or so. Smoking is about all he/we did for two days straight on that trip. I remember that bellowing laugh he'd bust out with. Funny sh#t.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 20, 2013 - 12:35am PT
I'd forgotten that you lived there too Craig, but I remember now that you've unlocked that door in my memory. I remember Andy ran a tow truck and waxed the ends of his mustache, and I remember one day I cashed my unemployment check in Tahoe City and went to use the pay phone at Safeway on the east end of town. When I took the quarter out of my pocket to make the call I unknowingly lifted a hundred dollar bill out too which fell to the ground unnoticed by me, but not by the guy waiting behind me to use the phone. I ran back three minutes later and the money and they guy were gone. That was my rent money which was due that day. I got home that early evening around six and told Andy what happened. he was already well sauced as he was most of the time if I recall, and thought I was lying to him. I wasn't, and as I protested my innocence he replied by punching me in the head a half-dozen times while I tried to block his punches with mixed results. I forget what happened after that but I believe I moved out within a few days as I had no recourse to get rent together again. Since that day I haven't lost more than a few dollars at any one time. I learned a hard, painful lesson care of Andy's fists.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 20, 2013 - 12:39am PT
Lord, I have some good stories about "Duh" Simpleton and Mud flats Bob Schoenard "The Aid Man" who I did my first (and nearly last,) wall with. I'll get back after I slap some more paint.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 20, 2013 - 01:11am PT
I've got to disagree with FRUMY. I'd never go around rating something 11b/c or even a because I couldn't climb 5.11a. I fell off the same move on Maggie's Farm for years and years. After I came back from England and had been in The Valley for a while I had occasion to go to Stoney and borrow a TR on Maggie's and I fired it, fairly easily to my utter surprise. They had to lower me in a hurry because my jaw was on the ground. I never tried it again because I didn't want to tarnish a good memory. Maybe he's thinking of Scott "The Old Man" Loomis, or maybe he's embellishing?
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 20, 2013 - 01:42am PT
greg thank's for the response. have you had time to get cole's video of stoney point?

also:russ wrote

May 19, 2013 - 09:23pm PT


Yes it does MP. I used to buy gear from Greg Lilly at his home "mountain shop" in Alpine the very first year I started climbing. Haven't thought about that dude since. Super nice English guy. Wonder what's up with him these days.

Lithium Lilly? Isn't he the guy who beat Strappo with a lead pipe as Strappo slept in a hammock on his porch? Last I heard Lithium Lilly was doing like a 30 year stretch in the pen.

Fist!!!! Glad to read you are around and still viable and functioning! Good for you man! Your stories are great and bring back some memories... Carol Moyer? John Allen? Good stuff. Inflatable man? hahaha.... nice one. Hope to read more. Cheers!

Ps: How about D'Simpleton? Remember him?
stich

Trad climber
Colorado Springs, Colorado
May 20, 2013 - 08:01am PT
Really nice turn of events on this thread with Greg signing up and telling his own set of stories.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 20, 2013 - 12:12pm PT
greg wrote about frumy:
or maybe he's embellishing

i know the past couple weeks his back has made him out of it.
Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
May 20, 2013 - 01:30pm PT
I got married and sort of faded from the scene by the early 80’s, so my best clearest memory of DaFist ..

Tahquitz Memorial Day weekend 1980. Cold, foggy/cloudy weather descended upon the Strawberry Valley and daytime highs were like 33F and visibility was naught. We were up there freezing and climbing what we could. I recall Greg had a mountaineering-like experience on perhaps the Hard Larks? Seemed like a sporting adventure…

Now, Robert Carrera (The Simpleton)- we’ve got LOTS of stories about him…… he’s still around? Also an artist? Been seen at some sort of Malibu Crags in recent years?
stich

Trad climber
Colorado Springs, Colorado
May 20, 2013 - 02:43pm PT
F, I'm pretty sure Greg mentions that he gradually dropped the accent with the exception of some word usage that has stuck around. Now if you want to see someone that went to England for a week and came back with the attempted accent, smoking Dunhills, and wearing goddamned sweaters in August in Houston then that would be my sixteen-year-old brother.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 20, 2013 - 03:06pm PT
dr F the mimms and HDM are topics on their own....
Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
May 20, 2013 - 08:11pm PT
HDM = Human Drug Machine.

(HDM and I actually climbed something. The Coming on Medlicott).
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 21, 2013 - 11:18am PT
hey i think the Hand was not such the wingman but the Fist can make an awesome wingman.

Greg the fist can u post up some recent pic's of you along with some ole climber pic's if ya gott em'.

i'm heading over to stoney this late afternoon so i'll take some pic's for you!
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 21, 2013 - 12:45pm PT
I'm trying to respond categorically to the first page of innuendo, slander, and fun fact I landed on, but in order to not become overwhelmed and be sent reeling into Wal-Mart (where my therapist keeps his office in the soothing pastels of the bath towel section,) I'll jump ahead. I am, by the way, very color conscious. My band was a hardcore punk band called BOHJ (Baby Oil Hand Job, 1990-1993.) On the night in question there were three bands and we were headlining. My band was on stage tuning up a few minutes before we were scheduled to begin, when my fiancee ran up to me and said that her life had just been threatened outside in the parking lot. I went to see what the problem was and without exchanging a word got into a fight with a large Nazi skinhead, who it turns out was all of 15 years old. Evidently, he was extremely upset because he wasn't old enough to enter the venue the show was at, which happened to be a bar. With everyone inside (about 300 people, a majority of whom I was acquainted with) waiting to see the show, it was just me and the neo-knucklehead going at it in the empty parking lot. I never saw the knife nor felt it. My friend Loni stepped outside the venue, saw the fight and came down to assist, which allowed me to break off. As I walked away I noticed something odd, and, looking down at my arm I saw blood jetting 10 feet with every beat of my heart. I was covered in blood. The motherf*#ker stabbed me, I thought as I walked to the front steps of the bar to sit down. Pushing my arm into my lap in an effort to control the bleeding I became aware of something odd under my shirt, and lifting it up I was greeted by my own glistening entrails. Although eviscerated, I know enough about medicine to realize that since blood wasn't pouring from my trunk, and with a hospital nearby I wasn't in any serious danger... it didn't even hurt. People began pouring out of the venue, including Debbie who let my band practice in her basement. She also happened to be an ER trauma nurse and took charge, ordering me to lay back, then yelling "Get me hot towels! Everyone get back and give him some breathing room!" Someone came out of the bar and handed Debbie a handful of towels which she used to take my insides that were outside and put them back inside, then leaned on them with all her body weight. It hurt like an absolute motherf*#ker, and I was never so happy as when I made it into surgery and they brought that mask down over my face. When I was wheeled into post-op six hours later I was the proud owner of 84 new staples. I'd been nicked over the eye and on my liver, and had a number of defense wounds on the back of my left forearm. Just a few inches over... if my liver had been centered odds are excellent I would have bled out, and I wouldn't be writing these words today. The kid stabbed Loni getting him through his leather belt and losing his grip on the knife now slick with my blood he ran, running with all the intelligence 15 years brings into the casino of a Holiday Inn. Wearing a white t-shirt covered in my blood he was arrested within minutes, and Simeon Able MacDonald ultimately ended up serving three months in the county lock-up for the two counts of attempted murder. Getting cut at that show was one of the most fortuitous events of my life. Before that evening I'd spent the previous two years working at Deux Gros Nez coffee shop. If you worked the Western Outdoor Retail Show back when it was still held in Reno you possibly went there. I hated working in the service industry, but it was the only job in Reno where you were allowed to be human. Taken off the schedule indefinitely I lost my job. My stripper-fiancee Monique (who had a rocking body and a brown-bag face,) impressed with my newly helpless condition dumped me. Unable to pay my bills I lost my apartment. In short, I lost everything, and with nothing left to lose I decided to take my talent seriously and teach myself to paint. My paintings began selling immediately, and at my second art show held at the Blue Heron health food restaurant I sold two paintings for $2,400. My rent at the time was $100 per month, and the sale allowed me to paint full-time. Since then I've completed nearly 1,000 paintings, and while I don't make a lot of money, I make enough, and the stories that people bring to me about what my work has meant to them is something money can't buy. As far as my politics goes
Elcapinyoazz

Social climber
Joshua Tree
May 21, 2013 - 01:08pm PT
Hey Greg, any photos of your paintings you can post? These stories are great. Disemboweled! Damn dude, that's gnarly. Can't believe the kid only served 3mo.
climber bob

Social climber
maine
May 21, 2013 - 01:18pm PT
amazing greg...thanks for posting!
stich

Trad climber
Colorado Springs, Colorado
May 21, 2013 - 03:21pm PT
Great story! It is pretty crazy what events cascade into others.
FRUMY

Trad climber
SHERMAN OAKS,CA
May 21, 2013 - 03:34pm PT
Great story -- I'm Glad you are around to tell it.

I'm glad you've had a chance to do what you are good at.

Pyro, I'm always given you sh_t for being a trouble maker -- well you did good, again.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 21, 2013 - 04:25pm PT
Thanks everyone for the nice compliments. My website is: www.gregallenpainter.com
Here's one of my better paintings from last year:
Centre Motel Cowboy, Elko, Nevada. Oil on canvas, 48"X36"/ 2012
Centre Motel Cowboy, Elko, Nevada. Oil on canvas, 48"X36"/ 2012
Credit: The Fist
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 21, 2013 - 05:33pm PT
My stripper-fiancee Monique (who had a rocking body and a brown-bag face
LOL! happens to the best of us..

matty

Trad climber
under the sea
May 21, 2013 - 05:35pm PT
^^^ wow greg nice work...looks like a photo...great capture of the neon glow.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 22, 2013 - 11:24am PT
dr F i've always loved the movie pricilla queen of the desert.

post the dave katz picture no problem this thread has leggs so that's the way she goes.

i'll post up pic's of stoney when i get home.
last night me and the gang were bouldering pretty good so i could deliver the pictures for greg.

although, frumy is named mark frumkin.

however, jeff lieberman was there and he said he'd give the goyle a call.
Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
May 22, 2013 - 07:31pm PT
That neon cowboy's got a pretty big hand. ;-)
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 23, 2013 - 12:31am PT
Credit: pyro
hey hand do you remember the yafer?
also:
great crowd at stoney last night. so great i passed out and forgot to post.
Credit: pyro
Credit: pyro
Credit: pyro

p.s. Dr f would u use the fist as you spa wing-man?

HOT POLITICS!



nita

Social climber
chica de chico, I don't claim to be a daisy.
May 23, 2013 - 02:59am PT
Hi, I remember you from BITD...

Wow, very cool looking at your art.. Lots of really Great pieces!....

Not sure why you did not highlight your url ..... So worth it to check out his art.
http://www.gregallenpainter.com/galleries.html

ps...paragraph spacing would be nice....or even.. sentence spacing...

Cheers.


number, 123....)
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 23, 2013 - 04:56pm PT
Dr f u got it backwards ur guide book was published years after david Katz published his getting high in l.a. guide book in 1990.

By the way when is the next time u and the fist getting. Nekid in the hot tub again!!!!
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 23, 2013 - 05:06pm PT
nita,
Thanks for the nice compliment and formatting advice. I only last night realized that not everything is fakebook, ugh, facebook, and I wouldn't be penalized by hitting the "Enter" key and having my scribbling posted prior to edit because of it.
Like this, see? I'm a quick study. I like to write, but am grammatically illiterate and an awful spellor. Thank goodness for spellcheck. I'm still chipping away at clarifying what was what BITD as best as memory serves, and as hard as I've hit it throughout my half century plus, I feel pretty fortunate I can remember my name most days.
looking sketchy there...

Social climber
Latitute 33
May 23, 2013 - 08:46pm PT
Greg,

I very much enjoyed looking at your paintings on your website. [Thanks for the link Nita]

Glad to see you not only still around (and have a good sense of humor -- helpful with this crowd), but doing something that you really love and for which you have a talent.

Randy V.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - May 23, 2013 - 09:44pm PT
Dr f why r u taking credit under the photo's that you never took and were never. Given to you as you claim?
Did you ever once climb at purple stone's,tunnel boulders,Malibu creek state park or sunset stones? All which are included in your guide book?
Why would you publish climbing areas that you are not fimiliar with in a guide book?
Jaybro

Social climber
Wolf City, Wyoming
May 23, 2013 - 10:31pm PT
Holy moly! What a lot of forgotten and just out of experience history! Carol moyer, john allen, strappo!. loni= Lon harter, by any chance? I know hes been stabbed in reno more than once....prolly met you @ deux gren a, as I was a regular there in those years. We're you there for thos Fish/chums parties with the Mudsharks during the Reno days of OR?

Steve quinlan tole me about a guy called 'the fist". Small world, and we've all shared more, times, space, friends, experience, of it than we think...
Elcapinyoazz

Social climber
Joshua Tree
May 23, 2013 - 10:55pm PT
Holy Sh#$& dude. I finally looked at your webpage gallery (it was blocked where I work), and you have a tremendous talent.

Thanks for sharing those.
FRUMY

Trad climber
SHERMAN OAKS,CA
May 23, 2013 - 11:43pm PT
Really, nice work.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 24, 2013 - 05:38am PT
I'm glad to see Stony Point finally has a roadside sign, just in case it was mistaken for the Reagan Presidential Library and final resting place of our first President with Alzheimer's.

I first met towhead Scott "The Old Man" Loomis out at Stony in '78 or '79. He must have been fourteen at the time and his voice was forever locked in the transition between the high pitched whinny of a boy, and the deeper gravel of a post-pubescent man. It was always cracking and he used it a lot, which may be why we got along. We both liked to hear ourselves more than just about anything. Whether you were a climber just encountering Scott for the first time, or a tourist on a hike encountering your very first climber and completely lost as to what was taking place out at Stony, Scott would tell you right away he was in training to be the youngest person to climb El Capitan. It was believable watching him glide through all the famous 5.10 boulder problems which he had dialed, making them appear no harder than 5.7 til you tried to pull into them. If you had the slightest doubt about his intent it was dispelled by his complete El Cap rack, which he'd acquired Lord knows how. He had it all, pins, nuts, dozens of carabiners, the coveted gray jumars, he even had a drilling kit with plenty of bolts, hangers and rivets.

I'd started climbing to prove a point as much as anything. I was put into a group home days after my tenth birthday and languished there for many years. During that time my mother remarried and moved to Sherman Oaks. My stepfather had a boy and a girl my age, and Larry, the boy met a kid down the street named Randy. Randy went to the prestigious Harvard School for Boys, where amongst his classmates were Lyle and Erik Menendez who shotgunned their parents as they sat watching television (the Billionaire Boys Club murderers,) former California Congressman Alphonso Bell's son Matt, Edger Bergen's son Chris (brother of actress Candice Bergen,) and Max Rheinhardt's grandson Mark, to name a few. Also at Harvard was Chris Friel (Lepton Man) who was on track to become a classical pianist, unfortunately for Chris he discovered climbing which rendered his hands stiffened mitts lacking the necessary flexibility for piano. Chris taught Randy the rudiments of climbing, and Randy and my stepbrother would drag me along on weekends when I was let out of group home for home visits, where my lack of ability gave rise to the term "GNW," which stood for "Greg no way."

They needled me regularly and I didn't like it. I was taken out of group home by Randy's mother since I wasn't the menace my mother always pegged me as. I enrolled in public school and promptly began ditching every day and going to Stony on my own, where I ran into the only other kid not in school, Scott Loomas (After a few years of study at Stony I eventually got my revenge on Randy by hauling him up Serpentine at Suicide and refusing to give him tension on the crux. Eventually I relented as it was the only way we were getting up the route. I'd proved my point.)

I fell in with Scott and we went bouldering together fairly regularly, though I don't recall roped climbing with him except on one occasion, when Scott armed with his El Cap rack led me back into one of the slots at Stony east of Maggie's Farm. Scott led his way up a nailing crack that was on the west side of the canyon. He tooled his way along over the course of a couple of hours, while I grew more and more impatient to actually do some climbing. About three-quarters of the way up he drilled a rivet or a bolt, as much to actually use his bolt kit as anything I'm sure. After seemingly an eternity, he set up an anchor and tied off the lead rope so I could begin jumaring which I'd yet to try. I didn't get far because the crack leaned to the right at a 70 degree angle, so Scott tied-off the better to see me and shout direction. "Take the top jumar and un-clip it, then reattach it past the pin." That part I got. "Now transfer your weight while releasing the lower jumar until your directly below the next pin." I didn't get it, and sat there seesawing on the jumars for half an hour. Midway through the lesson Scott began cackling, his peels of laughter bouncing off the narrow canyon walls repeatedly until I became pissed off out of all proportion to the problem at hand. I wanted to strangle him if I could get within reach. After half an hour without making a foot of progress I gave up, reattached the jumar below the pin and down jugged ten feet to the ground. Scott walked off the back and approached me with good nature ribbing defusing my anger. He took the cleaning apparatus off me, attached them to himself and in seconds was at my high point explaining to me what I'd done wrong. I paid attention, and with my genius for problem solving the lesson did me absolutely no good the next time I found myself in the same situation, the next occasion being in Yosemite 700 feet off the ground under the Kor Roof on the Column's South Face. Scott expertly cleaned the pitch in no more than twenty minutes, and indeed seemed as though he would be the youngest person to climb El Cap.

It was my first trip to The Valley, and Mark Rheinhardt and I had gone up there specifically to do The Column. Suffice to say I didn't figure jumaring out on that occasion either, and it didn't help that no one had ever bothered to show me right off the ground how to do it, and this time my climbing partner was out of sight and sound at the next belay station over the roof. I down-jugged to Dinner Ledge, and Mark pulled the rope and rappelled off, leaving a small gold mine of gear under the roof beyond reach. Mark was academic about the episode and not too upset, he was just that way, a very nice guy.

Fortunately assistance came in the form of one Largo, a.k.a. John Long, who had chosen that day to take a look and see if the roof could be freed. In about three minutes he was under the roof and feeling for holds over it to see if it would go, couldn't find anything, cleaned our gear for us and down-climbed the crack to Dinner Ledge. I was acquainted with John from climbing in J-Tree, and he was one of the nicer members of what we neophytes and less-than talented climbers called "The 5.11 Club." That crew called themselves Stonemasters, I guess, but the rest of us called them The 5.11 Club because you had to be able to climb 5.11 pretty comfortably to be on the in with them, and I can assure you climbing 5.11 in EBs was no easy trick. I had occasion to wear a pair of EBs not too many years ago and I may as well have been wearing wax paper on my feet. It's strange that it took as long as it did for stickier rubber to find its way onto the soles of climber's shoes.

The 5.11 Club was a loose association of twenty to thirty climbers headed by John Bachar, John Long and Lynn Hill, John Yablonski, all in the superstar realm, and closely followed by Mike Lechlinski and Mari gingery, Dean Fidelman, Charles "he drives that green Porsche" Cole, Randy Vogel, Herb and Eve Lager, and others. Even "Dr. F," star of TV's Futurama was on the list. They were all pretty damn nice people and not given to putting on airs and shoving their nose up at you because you couldn't climb 5.7. The only member I thought a little in love with himself was Rick "Crater" Cashner. I don't think in the hundred times I crossed paths with him he ever said "Hello," and my recollection is that if I said it to him he just looked at me like I was stupid, a little out of my league, and carried on with whatever he was doing, which was usually soloing Spiderline. Maybe that was just his way.

There were other groups trundling around J-Tree, which with it's small, looping campgrounds, and frequent biting cold high desert wind was always the most sociable and incestuous climbing area. The other crews were comprised of The Sheep Buggers, with their singular leader Russ Walling who being raised where he was (where was it Russ, Riverside? San Berdoo?) had his own take on the English language and was given to bleating as he walked to climbs. He was also very funny and had a sharp sense of humor. Next in line would be Dave Katz and his crew-- and by the way, I never saw him climb either, though I did hear him boasting of the first ascent of Rice Cake Roof, which reminds me that I saw him eating the aforementioned "nutrition" on many occasions. I imagine it took a lot of them to keep his muscled Adonis-like figure going. He was perhaps best known for having a substantial ego, though a very nice guy as far as I could tell. There was the Tape Brothers, whose real names were I think Dave and Steve, though my memory with names and faces can be suspect. They came to The Tree equipped with reusable, long-lasting gloves made out of Duct Tape and lined with regular cloth tape. As I recall they climbed cracks exclusively. There was Mike Beck and his bunch, which included the slightly-built, yet incredibly powerful Vaino Kodas, who on occasion wandered off to follow Tony Yaniro because he was one of the few that could. I was on occasion attached to this crew by dint of my need to find a ride to get there or anywhere. In reality I was at loose ends when it came to finding a partner, though I frequently climbed with Robert "Duh Simpleton" Carrera, who truth be known only became superhero Duh Simpleton after smoking weed. An absolute vegetable, worse than Vaino even. I also climbed with Alan Placovich, a large and scary person when he was pissed off, something I managed one freezing day while belaying him on the wide Avacado crack. I ran for my life when he topped out and set up to rappel, ran and hid like a little girl. There was the dynamic duo of Leveatt and Yaniro, and finally there was what I called the "Hobie Brothers," because I never saw them in any other brand of clothing which was beyond strange so far from the ocean.

The last nice weekend of Autumn and I was on Suicide Wall's Sunshine Face, climbing Sundance with Mark Rheinhrdt. Mark had finished leading the first pitch I think, and I was following. Midway up the pitch I heard a terrible commotion to the right around the corner and out of sight. Evidently someone was gripped on Insomnia Crack. You know how it is when someone has reached their personal best on a vertical crack, and it sounds like four couples having intercourse at once? That's what I was being serenaded with as I unclipped bolts and followed Mark. Soon I heard people shouting, then a moments silence followed by a horrible grunt. Evidently everyone had come at once. When I arrived at the belay Mark told me a terrible tale. A guy had become gripped or blown out on Insomnia Crack, and had run it out to a sinker hand jam but was too distressed to place a nut (Friends were pretty new and I'm not certain he had any.) Eventually he was trying to place one above him just beyond reach by throwing the piece while holding on to the biner. Eventually he got it in, but as he went for the clip he blew out of the crack and reversed the moves in free flight, clacking with his belayer and stopping inches from the ground after a fall of seventy-odd feet. Horrifying.

Next weekend it was biting cold, so Mark and I headed to Josh. With the weather unclimbable we decided to go into town to get beer, and on the way we picked up a couple of guys hitching. It was the Hobie Brothers. We engaged in shop talk, and when Mark revealed he and I went climbing at Suicide the previous weekend, the lead brother replied that's where they had been. Mark said "Did you see that guy that went nearly the distance on Insomnia Crack?" The guy in the back seat was David Kays, and he answered "That was me. That's nothing, I went 140' on Bird on a Wire." Bird on a Wire might be 170' long. I guess some people are accident prone like my friend Zubie. Sadly, David Kays froze to death near the top of The Nose after spending eleven days to get to a point 250' from the top in a solo bid to climb the route.

I never did climb a roped pitch with Scott after my fiasco in the grotto, though I heard some charitable individual took him to Joshua Tree. I have no idea how that trip went. As I understood it Scott was in The Valley when Mark and I made our failed bid on the Column. As was the custom of the time ('80?) we climbed to Dinner Ledge with all our gear, and in the morning chucked it off the wall in order to climb lighter and faster. As I said, we didn't get far and were soon on the ground looking for our haul bag stuffed with gear. We never found it, and I harbored suspicions as to where it went. I've heard rumors of a certain person ripping off some hash from a well known and highly regarded climber at the same time, and being marched up to the Leaning Tower traverse approach and held over it and threatened with exiting this life if the drug wasn't returned, but that's not my story to tell. I'd heard that Scott Loomas froze on the first pitch of his first wall, ending his bid to become the youngest person to climb El Cap, but that's just slanderous hearsay because I wasn't there.

While it's true that people rarely if ever saw me climb, part of my problem was with my "artist who doesn't draw," work ethic of the time, coupled with the fact I never had any gear to climb with, maybe just a harness and pair of shoes. I was a bit like Yabo's understudy, but without the strength and talent for climbing. The fact is I climbed possibly a hundred or more routes at Josh, thirty or more at Suicide and 1.5 at Tahquitz, a few at the Sequoia Needles and the obscure Christmas Tree Pass, both trips with Vaino Kodas, possibly 50 to 70 short routes in the Valley, a couple of Grade IVs and three trade walls, a few routes at The Leap and Owen's, and finally over 100 routes on gritstone in England and 2 on limestone. I know its not a huge amount of climbing for the years I was preoccupied with it, but it's a few routes more than "never climbed." The bitch of it is (pardon me ladies,) I never got up El Cap, never even tried except for doing the first three on Lurking Fear solo. It was just too much damn work.

Finally this is for Russ, who says I'm no cartoonist or something to that effect. All of Bob Schoenard's big wall systems are rendered as they were on top of the first pitch of our nearly waterless three-day, two night ascent of the Leaning Tower in 110 degree weather. I thought he was going to kill us both.
Mud Flats Bob "The Aid Man" straddles our haul bag and enjoys a Petit ...
Mud Flats Bob "The Aid Man" straddles our haul bag and enjoys a Petit Mal fit while showing off his immaculate big wall anchor system. Nothing equalized, one plus-size figure eight knot to clip the anchor, haul bag on one bolt, stopper key anchors.
Credit: The Fist
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 24, 2013 - 05:39am PT
Good Lord, I apologize, it seems I still like to hear myself... what's up with all the deleting jive and bickering? Anyone can come in and edit my sh#t? I spent years scribing this merde out of the darkest recesses of my memory...
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 24, 2013 - 05:59am PT
That's me on the right with my co-porn star Daniel Schwartz atop Turlo...
That's me on the right with my co-porn star Daniel Schwartz atop Turlock, waiting to do a double penetration scene on the first girl that wanders within reach. Dig the goldline rope and tube socks on Daniel. Serious chick magnates (ca. 1978).
Credit: The Fist
Kat Atomik getting ready to lasso it on the Black Rock Desert playa, J...
Kat Atomik getting ready to lasso it on the Black Rock Desert playa, July 4th, 2011.
Credit: The Fist
I'd like to clarify some sass about my "Wingman" status on this thread. Dr. F is right about my ability to repulse women when I was young. I was poison to them, and they avoided me like the plague. It got so bad I was beginning to think maybe I was supposed to be gay, the only problem with that was that the idea of a dude's beard between my legs was utterly repulsive to me.

Being raised in an institution made women utterly inexplicable to me and a mystery for the ages, because although they were around it was on the other side of a fence. I thought you had to look like the hirsute Tom Selleck or Ron Jeremy look-alike Burt Reynolds to get any action. I didn't get laid until I was twenty-one I'll admit, which is pretty damn late by anyone's standards. I didn't have the necessary confidence until I was a homeless punk rock kid living under a building in Hollywood.

I finally got rid of the taint in a room above Hollywood Liquors when a bunch of my friends split after we'd burned one, and suddenly I found myself alone with a lady named Grace. She was ancient, possibly in her mid-thirties, and though I wanted to run the thing was so overdue I let it happen. As it turned out I didn't suddenly explode in my pants as Xaviera Hollander's Penthouse column "Call Me Madam" had been assuring me for years would be the case, and I'm sure she had been clueless as to my secret shame. I look back fondly on the event which took place in a roach infested room, the neon glow from the flashing liquor store sign coming through the only small window and casting its off-on, off-on, pink glow over us. She fell asleep and I got dressed and split, exiting onto rain washed Hollywood Boulevard's "Walk of Fame" which was a riot of reflected color from the neon of the pizza by the slice joint next door, and the Chinese Theater across the street.

I was pretty damn happy about the whole thing, I had enough problems without being a homosexual in a society that in the main didn't accept them. I saw Grace on one other occasion about a year later. She was sitting on a bus bench on Ventura Boulevard in North Hollywood, and I recognized her as I drove by in my fiancee's mint '63 Lincoln Continental. I'd of flipped around and offered her a ride if my future ex-wife hadn't been with me, I swear to God.

As far as the interest in my "groinage" goes, and whether or not my hand is somehow reflected there, I can assure you it is. I'm big enough to do porn (though I'm a couple of decades too old unless I want to do niche work.) You have to be a minimum of eight inches by the way. Here's a picture of my 28 year-old current lover, hopefully this will put the matter to rest.
Russ Walling

Social climber
from Poofters Froth, Wyoming
May 24, 2013 - 11:31am PT
Super stuff Fist!

Just to clarify: The Sheep Buggers were headed up by Craig Fry and the ranks were filled with mostly relatives of people from Newfoundland.

Our crew all hailed from the Sierra Madre area and Arcadia. That would include the Boxer, the Manx, The Driver, the Shake Bros, Me, Jeff Sewell, Roy Mcclenahan, Erik Erikson and sorta Buttf*#kleman and Jon Frericks and Larry Loads. The last few were mostly Joe Boys from like Alhambra or somewhere. Even Joe Hedge aka Homo Joe was in there though I don't think he climbed and mostly just carried the gear for Buttf*#kleman.

As to your art talent... That was in another thread where two different Karls were mixed up. Someone said that you might be an artist or a Karl... I was claiming neither. Having seen the real Karls work I likened you to a drooling crayola scribbler compared to Karl with a K, of course not knowing if you had ever put pen top paper. Now, having seen your art, though different from Karls, your stuff is really top shelf. Great gallery of work you have there.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 24, 2013 - 11:33am PT
Thanks for the beta Pyro.

I think I'm getting the format thing, which you're absolutely right about.

I'm a technotard on the best day, I'll go back and fix.

Checking this...

nita

Social climber
chica de chico, I don't claim to be a daisy.
May 24, 2013 - 11:34am PT
Good stuff fist
but you need to break it up more

+1...agreed, Bad eyesight & old eyes suck.

Just after Russ' post, add an extra space after the word rivets...et cetera

ps.. I didn't notice the price of your painting on the website?.... curious..

I just enjoyed looking at your art work for the second time...... I love your painting style!..


Edit: Hey...THANKS for editing........(-;





can't say

Social climber
Pasadena CA
May 24, 2013 - 11:41am PT
da Fist, thanks so much for your memories. I remember vague slander fest's aimed at anyone not conforming to the ruling elite's world view. I'm glad you survived and now have a rockin hot g/f to soothe your artistic soul.
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 24, 2013 - 11:43am PT
Like jumaring you have to show me by example Nita...please. Rivets? You mean an extra space after sentences? You mean like this? Crap, it didn't give me a double space...

guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
May 24, 2013 - 12:12pm PT
Greg...

Best post of the year.

Word.

Please keep it up.

Guy Keesee
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 24, 2013 - 12:13pm PT
Oh, okay, think it worked right.

Was trying too hard I guess.

All the paintings on my website are sold. I haven't had a solo show since '01 because showing is a huge amount of work that for the most part precludes being able to sell anything for up to the year it takes to put together fifteen to twenty decent paintings. It's poverty inducing in a serious way.

Although over the last twenty years since I began teaching myself to paint I've been represented by five galleries here in Reno, it's not the best mode of sale. I mainly work on a commission basis, and while occasionally I can sell a piece for as little as $250 to $500, for the most part my better work is in the $1,000 to $2,500 range.

It may seem a lot of money, and for us mortals it is, but a large realist piece like the "Centre Court Cowboy," which is four feet by three, can take up to 200+ hours of mentally taxing graft. I earned $2,500 for the painting sans gallery commission which would have been an industry standard 50%, so essentially the painting went for 5K. Collecting art is for the most part a rich person's gig.

I'm basically earning minimum wage, but happy to be able to do so when the majority of artists require a day job to support their habit. "Job" for me, has always been a four letter word, though when it comes to painting I'm a workaholic.

Thanks to all for the props, I very much appreciate them. While I'm supposed to say "I do it because I love it!" the truth is I do it because others love it, and it's what I do best (well, that and one or two other things I like to think.) It can be grueling, solitary work, and though not financially rewarding, it is very emotionally rewarding.

Time for this vampire to retire, I'm about four hours past my bedtime. Thanks again for the nice compliments.
Somebody asked for a current picture to prove I'm still alive. Taken a...
Somebody asked for a current picture to prove I'm still alive. Taken at Bonneville, Utah.
Credit: The Fist

















The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
May 24, 2013 - 12:17pm PT
P.S. Damn, thanks Guy! And by the way thanks for doing "Clean and Jerk" and "Sail Away" with me all those years ago. A very confidence boosting day for me.
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
May 24, 2013 - 12:20pm PT
I always liked climbing with you....

just out for fun and adventure

good times.

stich

Trad climber
Colorado Springs, Colorado
May 24, 2013 - 12:29pm PT

Nice storytelling, Fist. It's nice when someone can come and write without a lot of self censorship.
ydpl8s

Trad climber
Santa Monica, California
May 24, 2013 - 12:53pm PT
That was indeed a good read, sort of felt like I was reading a short story of those Cali yesteryears written by Hunter Thompson...good stuff!
The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
Jun 2, 2013 - 05:14am PT
I removed the rant, it wasn't appropriate to the thread, which is now at end. Strange that loud mouth kid stuck in anyone's memory. I'm haunted by my past and the things that don't go away. When I was in group home I accidentally tongue-kissed this girl Lisa Miller and she got kind of hysterical about it. We found out later that she'd been getting off with her roommate in their shared room in the girls unit they were in which was called Taper 2. Her dad got out of prison or reappeared from wherever and pulled her out of the place a few months after that. About four months later my houseparent pulled me aside one afternoon to tell me that she'd been murdered up in Hollywood. He told me that she was living with her dad in an apartment, and one day while her dad was in the shower a pimp knocked on the door and tried to get her to turn tricks. She wouldn't go with him and he stabbed her through the temple with a knife.

Well, you grow up and learn that pimps don't go knocking door to door turning out girls, there are plenty of them arriving from everywhere looking for stardom, thrills, whatever. The good looking ones without mental acuity end up in porn if they're lucky. If a girl is attractive and smart she'll end up working escort. They end up tricking for a pimp if they're not lucky, and pimps are evil.

Working the track in Hollywood you can try to be an independent, but any pimp finds a girl who doesn't have a pimps "protection" on his turf and catches hold of the girl the first offense is a pistol whipping that shatters the girls nose (sometimes more) and renders her unable to work for the three weeks it takes her face to heal. If he catches her again he'll have his girls kidnap her and he'll insert a heated coat hanger in her vagina which will put her out of work for months. A third "violation" and the girl disappears. That's how it was in the seventies when all of Sunset Boulevard was turf owned by powerful pimps who drove around in garish Excalibers or Rolls Royces, wore bright green or maroon leisure suits and had platforms six inches high on their feet. They were quite a sight, like a bunch of menacing peacocks. They're all gone now, mainly due to the crack epidemic which really changed the face of LA in the early eighties. Nowadays pimps drive high-end BMWs, wear track suits and baseball caps. No class at all, but I digress. I think about that girl a few times a month. She'll just pop into my head and I'm left wondering if anyone thinks about her anymore? If her father's still alive how often does he miss her and what she could have been? I'll post my climbing stories as I find the time to get to them, if ever...
Wobbling up the flake on Turlock ca. 1978.
Wobbling up the flake on Turlock ca. 1978.
Credit: The Fist
dee ee

Mountain climber
citizen of planet Earth
Jun 2, 2013 - 12:58pm PT
Fist, great bitd stories, I love your style and art!

Carry on.


edit: Oh yeah, also loved your political thread aka "the rant.".
Crack-N-Up

Big Wall climber
South of the Mason Dixon line
Aug 27, 2013 - 04:17am PT
Greg, someone you would always remember if you ever met him. Greg seemed to know everyone and was quite the conversationalist. He introduced me to Rick Sylvester and I think Warren Harding.

One point Greg made I would like to clarify: I always tied off to each and every bolt hanger at a belay.

He and I climbed West Face Leaning Tower! It may not have been the best time of year to climb, but we had a bloody/good time. Bloody being the bad part where Greg's glasses prevented him from seeing, causing him to gash his "mitt" repeatedly when cleaning the pitons I placed. We did have some good times as well, but they were overshadowed by the gore and blood lost from his big right hand. Anyway cheers to you Greg!

The Fist

Trad climber
reno,nv
Sep 1, 2013 - 09:01am PT
It was great to hear from you on fakebook Crack 'N Up the Snake Charmer. I'd really like to re-post your fakebook reply to my query about your snake bite if you'd let me-- it's amazing, hilarious and nothing less.

Rick Sylvester. I've got a great epic tale called I think 'Climbing with Slick' about our leisurely two-day ascent of the Grade IV Geek tower Center Route. Slick Rylvester arrived at our rendezvous in the Camp 4 parking lot a little late, and we finally left to do the climb around 1:30pm, the second week of November, finally arriving at the base of the route with less than three hours of light to climb six pitches to the top of the tower, then rappel down the right side route. You can imagine the fun we had in that leaning, muddy gully.

I'm going to have to agree to disagree with you about the anchor thing. You'd already done Half Dome direct Route with Will Ox and Robert 'Da Simpleton' Carrera. and possibly the Column South Face, plus Mud Flats solo and the 130 degree LeConte Boulder aid crack, both all Crack 'N 'Up ascents, so I had a lot of respect for you.

I on the other hand, had done Mud flats with copperheads and a belayer, while my big wall experience consisted of drinking a case of Budweiser a day and listening to Darryl Hatton's many classic hair-raising tales of actually climbing big walls, many of them early third and fourth ascent repeats, including the second ascent of the P.O. Wall, while he put away two cases of Coors in one sitting. I considered him my mentor in The Valley.

Darryl told me I'd been crazy to do Mud Flats, which at the time was grade A4 and had 40' ground fall potential. It boosted my confidence enormously, and while drinking he taught me big wall do's and dont's, mainly delivered in the form of a seemingly endless supply of gruesome stories.

When you and I did The Tower together and I jugged up to you at the first anchor, your anchor 'system' nearly caused me to launch a giant brown submarine right there in my pants. I swear it was exactly as my cartoon shows. I gave you hell, and each subsequent anchor was mainly well-arranged except for one.

At the top of the fifth and sixth pitches which you lead as one initiating an unbelievable bout of MMA rope drag, you then rapped off without waiting for me to clean as you were in a hurry because it was almost dark (fair enough.) Arriving at the anchor I couldn't believe that in your rush you'd rappelled from a 3/4" bolt which was halfway pulled out, backed up by an ancient 1/4" bolt three feet up the start of the next pitch, a piece of dessicated (sun baked to the point where the yellow color was bleached bone-white) flat 1" tape, tied in an overhand knot directly through the hanger above, it ran down to where it was clipped into your single 'biner with another overhand knot if I recall. No freakin' way,I thought as I arrived at the station at last light. I took the time to clip the good bolt four inches below the 3/4" and equalize the lot, which made for a fun lights out rappel in 'this is what its like to be blind' conditions. I had to make certain my set-up was right by feel, before I launched down towards the sound of your voice, the entire time thinking Thank God I won't see the ground rushing up to kill me if the anchor fails. At least you'd used a screw-gate 'biner.

We had exactly one-quarter pint of water for our final day, and I allowed myself one small sip before breaking out my dinner. I'd been in a mad rush to secure my rations at The Lodge Gift Shop before our ride left. All I could think to get was a packet of Fig Newtons, which normally I like. Dehydrated as I was I may have as well have brought a bag of sawdust. You'd brought two cans of creamed spinach, which you enjoyed cold. Popeye much? Hungry and thirsty as I was it never crossed my mind to ask you for a bite, or slurp as the case may have been.

Finally, I didn't bash my Mitt cleaning your pins. I'm left handed, and cleaned good pin placements using my daisy chain clipped into the pin with a cleaner 'biner, outward force supplied with body weight.

The reason why I was covered in dried blood on the third day of our ascent, was because while cleaning pitch 5 in 110 degree heat my nose started pouring blood. After several fruitless minutes trying to arrest the flow by tilting my head back, I elected to let 'er run while I cleaned so I wouldn't be rappelling down to Ahwahnee Ledge in the dark, to no avail. I have to admit it was mesmerizing watching the drops run off me and disappear into space. Eventually I ran out of enough blood to maintain necessary pressure to feed the leak, and my nose stopped bleeding.

I was pretty weak the next morning, and when you insisted on leading all four remaining pitches I readily agreed, a feat you managed in about ten minutes using Crack 'N Ups, only setting gear every thirty or forty feet to prevent a long whipper.

You were the worldwide master of that piece of equipment, and Bill Forrest should have subsidized your trips to Yosemite.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 2, 2013 - 05:21pm PT
Crack n up's nice!
nice read greg!
where is mud flats?
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Sep 2, 2013 - 08:34pm PT
I've lead such a boring life. Thank god I have SuperTopo.

But I will say, Greg, you're waaay under-charging! Those are late 70's prices, if that!
You're also in four galleries too many in Reno. Have you heard of the capitalist notion of
Supply and demand? Those gallery owners are playin' you like a cheap fiddle.
Michelle

Social climber
1187 Hunterwasser
Sep 2, 2013 - 11:16pm PT
This is why I like this place. Who needs to buy a lame rag when we get this shizznit.
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