When I first arrived at Steemit Inc. I was supposed to report directly to the Executive Chairman: Ned Scott, so he could sign my internship papers, but when I first saw Ned he was aggressively rocking a vending machine back and forth. He looked like a man possessed as he stared beyond the glass while yelling: “Drop the fucking Dorritos!” Then he turned to me and demanded: “Hey programmer, can you hack the Dorritos out of this fucking thing?”
Frozen with fear, I tried to think of the right words to say, but then he impatiently turned back to the machine and began aggressively shaking it as he barked: “Fucking D3! You’re taking the food out of my fucking mouth!
Needless to say, I wasn’t sure if he was the right guy, so, I pulled out my intern forms anyway and asked: “Are you Ned Scott?” Then, out of nowhere, Ned let go of the vending machine and headed towards me. As I watched the vending machine slam into the wall, Ned punched me right in the face and then ran out of the office screaming: “You’ll never take me alive!”
I was absolutely mortified and since this was my first internship I wondered what I’d done wrong. So, I handed my papers to a receptionist and as I tried to explain what happened, some guy who was dressed in a greasy auto-mechanic jumpsuit, overheard the conversation and said: “You gotta be kiddin’ me!” and then he solemnly walked over to a sign that read: “Safety Is Our Primary Goal! Days Since Last Accident 0012.” As I watched him flip the numbers back to zero, the receptionist asked me to wait in the conference room while she called Ned.
After what felt like hours, Ned burst into the room saying: “I am so sorry for the mix up, I thought you were a process server!”
“That’s all right!” I blurted out without thinking.
“No, what happened to you was unacceptable and if you’re willing to sign these forms I promise I will make it up to you,” he said while sliding some papers across the table.
“Make it up to me?” I asked.
“Yeah, I can compensate you… I mean I don’t have the money on me, but maybe in a few days... Or if you could give me a few weeks… Listen can I level with you?” He asked in a soft but serious tone while leaning toward me.
“Yeah, whatever you...” leaked from my frightened lips.
“I’m a victim of the ‘Me Too Movement.’ You’ve heard about that right?… So basically they got me by the balls and I’m a bit strapped for cash, but if you sign that, I promise I will make it up to you.”
As I listened to him speak, I realized that he was exuding a nervous energy that made me want to climb the walls to escape, so, I said, “Sure” and I quickly signed the forms.
“Welcome to Steemit!” Ned proclaimed while extending his right hand and I instinctively reached forward to shake his hand.
“I’m really glad to have you!” he said, while shaking my hand. After the customary two shakes, I loosened my grip, but he went for the third and then, as our hands came back down he refused to loosen his grip at all; instead adding his other hand and saying softly: “Can you feel that? The energy’s really good right now!” and then he lowered his brow almost squinting while staring directly into my eyes.
It was so awkward my eyes didn’t know where to look and they began darting around the room until he finally broke the silence: “Oh, it’s all so clear now... You were orphaned as a baby and you grew up in an orphanage in… Ohio.”
At this point, I was literally jumping out of my skin, “What the fuck are you talking about?” I blurted out while trying to yank my hand back.
“No! Don’t tell me anything, I’ll get this!” he demanded just before he returned to staring.
I was becoming very concerned about what kind of website Steemit Inc was and I kept getting intrusive thoughts that it may be a rapey version of Grinder. Panic was setting in and my mouth tried to go rogue, “I’ve never even been on Steemit Inc before, is it like Griiin... Uh- I mean SnapChat or FaceBook?”
A puzzled look fell over Ned’s face and he let go of my hand, “You mean you don’t even know?… How can I explain this?… Have you heard of Friendster?”
“No” I said.
“Well, Friendster was the first social network and just like Friendster, Steemit is the first social network to be built on a blockchain. Now, unlike all the big social networks like FaceBook and Snapchat, Steemit was designed specifically, so, you will never run into your grandma... or anybody else that you might know; so Steemit will always remain cool,” he explained.
“Is Friendster a foreign website?” I asked.
“No, it was American, but Friendster failed because they didn’t have private messaging,” he explained.
“Oh, so you learned from Friendster’s mistakes and created version of Friendster with private messaging?” I asked.
“No! Are you even listening?… Private messaging brings grandmas and Steemit is a grandma-free-zone! We are the first! Like friendster!” he exclaimed gruffly.
I knew that I shouldn’t ask any more question, but the words just slipped out: “What’s your deal with grandmas?”
In that moment, Ned completely hulked-out: every vein rose to the surface of his neck and he launched the nearest chair at me. I quickly took cover under the table and I heard him begin to sob as he stormed out of the room.
So, I left early and I wasn’t expecting to return, but later when I checked my voicemail Ned left three messages that strung together formed an apology song, with a little cursing in between; it was so weird.