User:Sloublues/Ray Stevens

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Ray Stevens (born Erik the Awful) is an Immortal. Little is known of his long life, but historians and biographers have pieced together enough to be sure of the following:

800s - 1000s

The man we know as Ray Stevens was born to Norwegian parents in about the year 842 AD. His parents, who named him Erik, were poor, illiterate farmers. Erik disliked the farming life, however, and joined a crew of Viking raiders when he was fourteen, taking "the Awful" as a nickname in order to differentiate himself from all the other Eriks. His diligent, spirited work ethic propelled him to captaincy of his own vessel by the time he turned twenty.

“ I du it fur zee ploonder, zee keelling, und zee gurls, yuoo murun. Noo geefe me a keess! ”

~ Erik the Awful on Suzy Kolber asking him why he became a Viking

Contemporaries described him as massive and tall, with a great deal of body hair. His clothing was also notorious for being hairy even by Viking standards, although this may have been due to observers confusing the point where his body hair ended and his clothing began.

Erik was feared by friend and foe, rich and poor alike for his bravery, ruthlessness, brutality, and above all his tenacity. He was also dreaded by socialites for his total lack of tact and etiquette. Many banquets and tea parties were ruined by the appearance of Erik the Awful, who would -- for example -- enter the room by breaking down a door, gorge himself on biscuits and Earl Grey, belch in a lady's face as he relieved her of a diamond brooch, make a disparaging comment about the menu, and then leave by smashing through a different door.

“ Vhet keend oof perty duesn't serfe-a feesh? Zee keend cetered by ideeuts. ”

~ Erik the Awful on one very high-class tea party
    • Example of his tenacity -- across three continents and the Alaskan land bridge, which had been submerged in the ocean long before
      • Settled down in today's Washington D.C. area; descendants tend to be involved in applied economics


Erik seems to have remained quietly in the Washington D.C. area for many centuries. When British colonists came to the area, he even changed his name to John Jones, presumably in order to fit in with the newcomers. (Whether he had ever taken a Native American name is unknown.) However, in the year 1849, he caught the gold fever and headed to California.

On his way across the continent, Jones (as he was now called) came down with a nasty case of food poisoning, probably because of his tendency to stop at seafood chain restaurants for dinner. The food poisoning was so determined to kill him that it kept him an invalid for nearly two years. Finally its tiny mind absorbed the idea that it wasn't going to accomplish anything with someone called an "Immortal" and it gave up. By this time, however, Jones was a shadow of his former self. Those he met in California often referred to him as tall, thin, and lanky.

While in California, he struck no gold. This may be because he became romantically involved with a rich heiress named Susan. She was continually under attack by another man, named Samuel, who repeatedly threatened Susan with deadly force in order to get her to sign her wealth over to him. Jones evidently spent much of his time saving Susan from Samuel's attempts on her life.

Jones's lack of mining success may also have been the result of his staking a claim on the northern California coast, well away from the major gold strikes.

It is rather surprising that Jones never simply killed Samuel on any of the thousands of occasions he rescued Susan from his clutches. It may be that, over the long centuries, Jones's fierce Viking spirit had given way to a desire for peace. It may also be that Jones did not feel up to the task after his long, draining battle with food poisoning.

Jones and Susan ("Sweet" to her friends) were married in 1857. As the only other living man with any claim on her, Samuel ("Salty" to his enemies) gave the bride away. (Some locals said that, before the time of the wedding, Susan had spent more time in Samuel's company than in anyone else's, on account of his kidnapping her so often.) Their marriage seems to have been happy but childless.

Early 1900s

Susan died in late 1897 of pneumonia. In the year 1899, Jones left California on a ship bound for China. He may have felt a desire to return to his old Scandinavian haunts. However, based on evidence in a diary kept by an acquaintance, it is clear that Jones had become convinced that Theodore Roosevelt was a fellow Immortal. Knowing that a mere Viking warrior had no chance in a fight against that man, Erik decided to get as far away from him as possible.

Jones eventually settled down in Saudi Arabia, where he lived under the name of Ahab. He quickly became prosperous there, possibly because he still had plenty of treasure from his Viking days. However, he had to leave town quickly after a sultan caught him fooling around with the sultan's daughter, Fatima of the Seven Veils.

Ahab's next stop was in deepest darkest Africa (just behind the 7-11). There, living under the name Zan, he found a union job at a local manufacturing plant. He also met a girl named Jane (no last name is known). Although they never married, they lived together in a tree house for several years. They kept a chimpanzee as a pet.

Jane, a talented blues singer, got Zan interested in music. Zan sent off for a guitar and instructions on playing it. This was a mistake. Neighbors soon began to refer to him as "Zan the Guitar", "That No-Talent Guy", and "The Idiot Who Keeps Waking Me Up At 3 AM With His Loud Singing". Zan and Jane broke up shortly afterwards over irreconcilable differences, namely a disagreement over who should sing which part of "California Dreamin'".

Zan returned to Norway, but found it changed along with the rest of the world. "Viking" had long since dropped off the list of respectable occupations, and his attempts to round up a raiding crew were met with bewilderment and scorn. After only a few months there, he moved back to the United States, where he had lived happily the longest.

Zan now changed his name to Coy (possibly a reference to the fish) and found a job as a construction worker in Alabama. He even joined the Shriners. However, his girl troubles continued. He was thrown out of the Shrine over a spectacular incident involving a redhead, a motorcycle, and pineapple sherbet. Embittered, he joined the Hell's Angels and took to cross-country trips. He also changed his name yet again, to Ray Stevens, to stop people making fish faces at him.

Mid 1900s - 2000s

While in Detroit, a man with Motown Records talked Stevens into posing for record album covers. During a photography session there, a visiting Hollywood producer "discovered" him. Dazzled by the prospect of being in movies, Stevens flew back to California, where he took "Erik the Awful" as his stage name, not realizing that "awful" now meant "bad" more often than it did "terrifying". His big break finally arrived, however, in the form of the role of Arnold Schwarzenegger's stunt double in Conan the Barbarian. After that, he had steady work, mostly playing muscular henchmen, for several decades.

Hollywood was shocked when Peter Jackson chose Stevens to play King Kong's father in the 2005 remake of King Kong. "He's good as a bouncer or a bruiser," the general opinion went, "but you can't seriously expect him to show any dramatic range." Stevens proved them wrong, however, turning in a masterfully strong performance. His character's emotional breakdown as King Kong plunged off of the Empire State Building moved audiences to tears and was a major reason that he was awarded the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor that year. It seemed that Stevens's star was on the rise.

However, less than three months after the Academy Awards ceremony, Stevens was arrested for sexual harassment. Police charged that they caught him telephoning a certain woman, who was identified in court documents only as "Margaret", for the purpose of making various lewd comments.

The trial caused quite a stir. In particular, many people (particularly stand-up comedians) made light of the fact that, when brought to the police station and asked for his name, Stevens had claimed to be "Withered McVein".

“ So I guess you've all heard about this business where Ray Stevens got arrested for making crank calls and he gave his name as Withered McVein. Seriously? Withered McVein? What's up with that, am I right? If I had a body like his, I'd call myself Dirk Hardpec, or Crunch Slamchest, or even just Big McLargeHuge. ”

Upon determining that he had been calling the woman daily for several weeks prior to his apprehension, a jury convicted him on all counts. He was sentenced to six months in jail and ordered to pay a $15,000 fine.

When it came time for his release, however, Ray Stevens refused to leave confinement. Evidently he had done some thinking during his stay and concluded that a jail cell was one of the safer places to hide from other Immortals who might want to relieve him of his head. To this day, he remains in jail, writing songs about his experiences but otherwise refusing to speak about his long and varied life.

Categories: Immortal; Musicians; People With Talent; Vikings