Thursday, June 3, 2010

Chuck Panozzo Lists Modern Tropical House

SELLER: Chuck Panozzo
LOCATION: Wilton Manors, FL
PRICE: $799,000
SIZE: 2,000 square feet (approximately), 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Back when we were just knee high to a billy goat, Your Mama recalls one particular, sunny Saturday afternoon when our well intentioned but culturally paranoid Christian neighbors had all the local kids over for punch, cookies, and a lesson in "backmasking." Some of the children may recall the early 1980s when a bizarre brouhaha broke out about backmasking, a technique through which a hidden message is recorded backwards into a song that is meant to be played forward. The only way to "hear" these alleged hidden messages is to play the recording backward, which of course almost nobody does. The backmasking fracas got so out of control that in 1983 a bill was actually introduced in California aimed at preventing backmasking that "can manipulate our behavior without our knowledge or consent and turn us into disciples of the Antichrist." Disciples of the Antichrist? Pu-leeze. Have y'all heard of anymore more ludicrous in your lives?

Anyhoo, although we'd spent hours (and hours and hours) with Linda Rondstadt and The Knack spinning on the family turntable, Your Mama had never heard of playing a damn record backwards and couldn't fathom why someone would do something so stupid. Our seemingly guileless neighbors on the other hand–bless their little hearts–were in a feverish panic about this backmasking issue because they, like so many fundamentalist religious groups at the time, believed some bands were backmasking not just any ol' messages but Satanic messages into their songs.

With wild-eyes, our neighbors whipped out their tape recorder and played all us innocent kiddies some recorded examples of these so-called Satanic messages. We furrowed our brow, cocked our head, and listened for the voice of the devil. We heard a lot of garbled things we couldn't understand and then, practically jumping out of their skin with outrage and excitement, our poor neighbors would screech at us what it was we were supposed to be hearing. This went on for an hour or more. As Your Mama slowly shifted our attention away from the tape recorder and focussed on the cookies and the sad, cat tattered curtains, our hosts prayed for our salvation from Satanic music. They gave us a list of bands that allegedly put backwards Satanic messages in their music and warned us from listening to the bands lest we become minions of the devil himself. Your Mama left with the baby hairs standing straight up on the back of our sweating neck, not because we thought Satan was trying to send messages through Led Zepplin songs but because over the course of our lesson on backmasking we developed a very strong feeling that our neighbors were 47 kinds of crazy.

One of the many bands that was on the list of bands our neighbors encouraged us to boycott was Styx. Not only had they named their band after the mythological River Styx that separated earth from the underworld–otherwise known as hell–they, allegedly, included the absurd backwards message "Satan move through our voices" in their song Snowblind from the Paradise Theatre album. We don't know about that, but we do know that Come Sail Away was and still is a classic worth listening to every now and then.

This has all been a all a very, long and roundabout way of getting around to the real estate matter at hand. Thanks to the generous and bizzy boys at Celebrity Address Aerial, we've learned that Chuck Panozzo, the bass playing founding member of Styx, and his artist man-friend Tim have put their modest but exuberantly done Bali marries south Florida style house in Wilton Manors, FL on the market with an asking price of $799,000.

In 2001, after 30 years as a rock star swarmed with louche and languid groupies, Mister Panozzo left the band and came out publicly as a gay man living with HIV. A year later he released an autobiography appropriately called The Grand Illusion: Love, Lies, and My Life With Styx. Since coming out of the closet, Mister Panozzo has become a vocal advocate for AIDS awareness and gay rights. He reportedly sometimes gets with and plays gigs with the current members of Styx.

Wilton Manors, for those not familiar with the particulars of geography in south Florida, is a gay friendly enclave near Fort Lauderdale, a beach town also popular with the gays and spring breakers so drunk they can't spell their damn names. Property records show Mister Panozzo and his man-friend purchased the property in the gayborhood in June of 2005 for $635,714.

Listing information indicates the walled and gated single story residence measures around 2,000 square feet and includes 3 bedrooms and 3 poopers. The front motor court, a kind of circular drive that's not actually circular is separated from the front courtyard by a tall white wall. Entry is through a gate under a Japanese style pergola thing that opens to a decked bridge that spans a koi pond and leads to the glass front door. Flanking the front door are a couple of statues that would startle the skin right off Your Mama as we came across that bridge on a boozy and dusky evening.

The interior spaces, an open plan sort of thing has a corner living room with ivory leather furniture that opens to the back yard through a couple of French doors and a dining area furnished with a small round table with a Lucite base and four barely there Lucite chairs that sit on a faintly patterned round rug. Mister Panozzo clearly has a thing for upsetting statuary. To the right of the dining room table is a statue of what looks like a very hungry peasant person and, to the left, a stone torso in front of the shimmery, possibly mother of pearl tiled wall depicting a well-built man with his naughty bits exposed. Listen poodles, Your Mama's decorating rule #797 clearly states that regardless of artistic provenance no gay man's home should ever include semi-lurid statues, paintings, and/or drawings of naked men. It's just unseemly and unnecessarily cliché. However, if one insists on having a carved stone nude torso of a well-built man in one's home, the dining room is just not the place to put it. Ever. Seriously. Nobody wants to look at some statues stone twigs and berries while trying to tuck into a hot plate of chicken cacciatore. Well, at least no one Your Mama knows.

Amid the extravaganza of tropical flora and Buddhist statues and bas reliefs are several koi ponds and other water feathers, meditation gardens, a saltwater swimming pool and tented poolside cabana with gauzy curtains and a giant u-shaped sofa over flowing with what Your Mama can only hope are dozens of multi-colored and patterned throw pillows. The lily is perhaps more gilded here than we might prefer for our own poolside cabana but at least Miss Panozzo had the good decorative sense not to karate chop the throw pillows. Your Mama can hardly bear the summer heat and humidity of southern Flaw-reeduh but we could probably stomach the situation for an afternoon or two iffin we could replace that big ol' rough wood coffee table with some sort of apparatus where Big Sven and his Big Hands could work his massage magic.

Your Mama hasn't any idea why Mister Panozzo would want to sell his version of tropical paradise, but perhaps he's moving back to Chicago? On to bigger and better digs? Downsizing to a condo on the beach? Maybe if we listen to some of his records in reverse we'll hear some sort of clue.


Jumpin Jejosephat in LA said...

I whole-heartedly agree with you Mamma. This place is a bit much for the average home shopper to be able to picture their own style of largess applied to the premises, up to and including their own statuary, weather or not it included some representation of the meat and two veg. If I'm not mistaken, the only time male genitalia should be exposed in the dining room is in the rare instance of Fido getting a rather violent case of naughty nose at the exact same time you happen to be having a dinner party with your close friend and neighbor, the Genito-Urinary surgeon, with whom you always find some excuse to not shake hands with during the course of the evening. But I digress. If ever there were a domicile calling out for the Staging Lady in the Pink Toyota, this would be it. In it's favor, it does seem to be well priced in today's meltdown market.

Anonymous said...

Actually I quite like it except, of course, for the nude torso and the creature on hands and knees. But those could be easily discarded and then all would be well.

JDubble07 said...

Hey Mama. If you actually look at the deeds on the property records, Panozzo's 'better half' purchased the home in his name only in June 2005 for $635,714, then in September 2007, with a consideration price of $305,500 (roughly half the previous sale price) the home was quit-claimed into the name of both men. A very likely relationship commitment.

Madam Pince said...

Mama, all my male friends are gay, and I've never seen the slightest glimpse of genitalia in their homes. A lot of architectural drawings and lovely wallpaper, but nary a hint of wang bone.

I love this house, and like you, I wonder why Mr. Panozzo and his man-friend are selling it. I'll email the SIRIUS classic rock station and ask them to play "Renegade" backward; maybe that will reveal their reasoning.

Anonymous said...

Mama I can't imagine why naked male statues or paintings would bother anyone, god knows i am forced to look at an endless parade of breasts and other naughty bits in the homes of straight people I visit.

Crowley said...

I really like this house. What I enjoy is seeing a normal-sized home done up within an inch of its life. So many of the huge celebrity joints are so soulless, but this place gives me a sense of the owners. I have no idea about the prices in their neck of the woods, but it seems like a deal. (Of course, I live in the SF Bay Area, so my version of "a deal" is probably pretty skewed.)

lil' gay boy said...

I have to agree with Anon 8:19 ––– more insidiously invasive than the soi-disant backmasking is the all-pervasive naughty bits that pass for art in many a straight home; but please, gay or straight, never in the dining salon, where, as Mrs. Astor would have put it, it might frighten the horses... leave your guest at least something to the imagination when it comes to the dessert course. But let's leave that little surprise to our dear Staging Lady in a Pink Toyota.

While better than most homes in the area, it appears that there is a standing water issue with this flat-roofed Asian gem, and the yard needs some serious pruning.

But for some reason the pool has me thinking of Christmas: ♫♫ Silver Balls, Silver Balls...♫♫


But it appears that our Mister Panozzo was something of a hottie in his heyday...

Jimbo said...

Using the address on the Broward County Appraiser's web site, and map's bird's eye view it doesn't appear the house in the pictures match the one on the ground.

How things change. I spent my entire life before the army and college living in Fort Lauderdale. Wilton Manors was a moderate priced suburb back in the day.

Jeannified said...

Cool, but funky place!

candi speling said...

Linda Rondstadt. I listened for hours and hours too, Mama. I had one Styx album. Once again this post had me laughing out loud. And of course, feeling a bit nostalgic.