Modena - Over the weekend, while the world of music marked the first anniversary of the death of one its greatest performers, Luciano Pavarotti, one resident of Modena, Pavarotti's birthplace, showed no sign of reverence towards the deceased tenor.
During their childhood, Pranzo Grosso, 73, would often bump into Luciano at school or try in vain to put the ball past him during a game of football.
However, their friendship came to an abrupt ending one summer's day when their respective families took a trip out to the countryside for a picnic.
"We all decided to go for a walk first, you know, to build up the appetite for the picnic", explains Pranzo. "But when we get back to the cars, that fat bastard Pavarotti, he eat the bloody lot."
But there was, quite literally, a sting in this tale, as Pranzo explained; "Anyway, because he eat so bloody much, he have to go for a big shit in the woods but he must have upset a nest of wasps or something, because they sting his huge fat arse and he come running out from behind the trees screaming, with his pants down by his knees."
That happened over 60 years ago but Pranzo has never forgiven the operatic gargantuan. "Every time I see him I used to creep up behind him and make buzzing sound. Then I kick him right up his great big arse."
This ritual eventually ended when Luciano unexpectedly took off with Pranzo's right shoe. "One day I kick him so hard, my foot go right up his arse and my shoe, it disappeared.
Can you believe that? What a greedy bastard. Even his arsehole eat my shoe."
Pranzo finished with one parting shot. "Why do you think he was such good friends with Andrea Bocelli? It's because he could not see Pavarotti eating all his bloody food."
Luciano Pavarotti - for many, the man who gave his voice to the world but to Pranzo Grosso he will forever be the bucket of lard who stole the food from a blind man's plate.