25 February, 2008

Repost of my Steve Blog for the benefit of those interested [from MySpace, October 17, 2007]

Location: Land of the Lost

Do you know Steve?

I am sure that you do. And if you doubt me, let me prove it to you. There is not a single person I know who does *not* know Steve. Isn’t that proof enough?

So a little background on Steve. I met him maybe 5 or 6 years ago. I used to go to Pizza Brava for lunch every day on the Ave, in the U-District. This is back when the Ukrainians made the pizza and it was good. Some time about 3 years ago, the ownership changed, and next thing you know, the pizza is about the same quality as Ellio’s frozen pizza. You can go back and read my pizza blog, if you want to hear me rant about pizza, that’s not the point here.

So, I’m in Pizza Brava (where they already knew my order, and didn’t even need to wait for me to say “2 slices of cheese“), and this guy (Steve, foreshadowing) comes over to the table and starts talking to me. He’s a strange guy, about 5’ 6’’, 165-170, with a round plump face, and hair that could only be described as resembling “Krusty the Clown” from the Simpsons. And he’s got buggy eyes, and a semi-unshaven look. I think he was wearing some type of floral print short sleeve shirt and shorts, as he often wears (again, foreshadowing, since I’ve seen him since then).

So, this guy Steve starts talking to me, and he’s asking me questions. And the reason that he’s asking me questions is because he’s “got all these questions in his head, and he needs them answered”. I learned a lot about him. For instance, I learned that his “girlfriend” (translation: stranger that he was probably stalking) has taken out a restraining order against him, and he’s not supposed to come within 100 meters of her place. But he keeps going by there (because he’s got those questions). And she’s a “fucking bitch”, of course. And he is concerned about UFO’s, and about energy in the air, and about electromagnetic radiation. And he especially is concerned about “Bad V’s”. These, he describes, are what he calls “Bad Vibes”. You cannot use the word “Vibe” around Steve, as he will go ballistic. I think I said the word, and that’s how the whole “Bad V” thing started. Anyway, Steve’s modus operandi is that he will ask you a ridiculous question:

e.g. “Do you believe in UFO’s?”

And then when you say you don’t, he will follow-up with another question:

“Did you know that I was going to ask you that just now?”

This is a standard operating protocol for Steve.

So, I spent, I kid you not (which says a lot about *me*) about 2 hours in Pizza Brava that day listening to Steve. It was partly because I couldn’t get away from him, and partly because he was interesting. He informed me that he was “working” at Pizza Brava, but what I figured out is that the Ukes were letting him sweep the floor in exchange for free food. But eventually, they kicked him out because he was harrassing the customers too much. They asked me if he was bothering me and I said no.

So, at the end of the discussion, we’re out in the street, and he tells me he wants to get together again, and wants my contact information, and I do not want this. So I talk my way out of that. But then… get this…

Steve HUGS ME!!!

For fuck sake. I am a sucker for people who are deranged.

Anyway, I don’t see him for awhile, but I talk about this with people, and it turns out EVERYONE knows Steve. Mostly people see him on the bus, and apparently he rides on EVERY bus, because no matter where people are going, they’ve seen Steve. And he is always bothering women. And he especially likes to ask them if they heard what he was just saying, or if they knew that he was going to talk to them.

Blah blah blah.

He also frequents the UW Health Sciences Building (not to be confused with Ali, the Hispanic, or maybe Middle-Eastern (not sure which) guy who dresses in gaudy clothes, and weighs about 47 pounds and talks loudly to himself in gibberish - he’s another story altogether).

Steve is apparently Jewish. Not that this is relevant to the story at all.

So one day, I am going to physical therapy in the basement of Hall Health, maybe 3 years ago, and I turn the corner, and “voila!”. There’s Steve.

He sees me, and I can tell there’s all sorts of bells ringing in his little fried brain. He’s like “Hey! Hey! How’s it going? You’re Bob. Bob, right?”

I’m stunned.

“Yeah, Steve, right?”

Steve, who though crazy, is also clever, knows I’m stunned, and immediately says:

“What was your last name?”

And me, too frazzled to even think, blurting out my last name…

Steve: “Are you in the phonebook?”

Jesus Christ. He’s good.

“No, I’m not”. Well, I am, and he could have checked, but my guess is that his brain very quickly moves on to the next random paranoid thought too quickly to have bothered following up on that one.

So, I’ve seen him here and there from a distance over the years, and everyone has heard of him. Then I mention him to my friend, and she’s like “Yeah, I think maybe I know who you mean”. And then like 3 days after that discussion, we are out to dinner last night on the Ave, and this guy walks by us, and he does a double-take, and I realize as he’s passing, “IT’S STEVE!!!”. And I grab my friend’s arm, and I’m like “That’s him! That’s Steve!”.

She’s like, “Oh, I totally recognize that guy!”.

And then, after he’s walked down the street another 50 meters, she turns around and yells, “HEY STEVE!!!”.

And then we ran like crazy motherfuckers around the corner through the parking lot, before he could even turn around and see us.

Oh, hell, that must have really made his neurotransmitters go bonkers…

So… do you know Steve? And more importantly… did you know I was gonna ask you that? :)

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