When ruggers tell stories of Steve, they tell of his epic parties or his amazing rugby accomplishments. I think of three occurrences. The first was after a game at Southern. We were coming back on a Sunday with a rookie, who had informed us that he liked heavy metal music. As we were heading north, we decided to turn on some tunes. We discovered a station playing the top 10 country hits of the week. So we played it. As we got a little farther north, we discovered another station that was playing the program and was down to the final top 5. So of course we listened. A little farther north there was another station playing the program. By this time were able to sing along. So we did. We continued signing our way into Champaign. Now I don’t remember who the rookie was, but we never saw him again.
The second event occurred on a Sunday. I don’t remember the details of what occurred the night before. Let’s just say there had been a post game party where shenanigans occurred. This was during a rough patch in my life and I remember waking up very unhappy with my behavior the previous evening. I may have acted like an asshole or even the Asshole. Steve dropped by. I expressed my remorse and how I thought I should resign my leadership role. Steve’s response was basically don’t worry about it, we all have evenings like that, you are a valuable member of the team, and just keep up the good work. I admired his compassion and understanding.
The third was after a game in the Chicago. We stayed at his mom’s house. Sitting at the kitchen table, the conversation ranged. At that time chasing women was often the topic. During this discussion, Steve imparted some words of wisdom. Addressing his mom he said “Mom, there are three types of women…wee, not so wee, and freaking huge.” It may not have been his own original idea, but that does not make it less true and I still carry this profound nugget of observation with me.
Paul “Weasel” Duquaine
p.s. I have Erkle to thank for that nickname