Leonardo Beethoven.

“Come on, dude. It’s not Beethoven, and you’re not like, writing the Sistene Chapel, you know? Just get out there and do what you do,” he said, as if he were a cheerleader, punctuating his gooutandgetemituitiveness with a solid, straight right to the my shoulder and a double nod.

“What are you talking about?” I said, unblinking.

“You know. You gotta like remember that you’re this big awesome guy at what you’re doing, you know? Just like that other guy. Albert DaVinci. You know him: Invented the toothbrush and the radio. He didn’t just give up. He went out, got into his truck, and just did it. Okay? That’s what you’ve gotta do, man. Just do it. Isn’t that some cereal motto? Rice Krispies, I think. Yeah.”

I stood incredulously as he hit my shoulder again and gave me a push away. I walked as though I were Atlas, and for a few hours, I was burdened with someone else’s stupidity. I would be lying if I didn’t say that for a split second I thought he might be right and I might be wrong. That all I had learned about Beethoven was wrong and that DaVinci’s name may be Albert.

But, only for a split second. I’m not that stupid. That’s Keith O’Keefe for you. He can be so convincing and confident in his own stupidity that he could make you doubt your own intelligence. Despite Keef Keef’s (his childhood nickname) shortcomings, and they are indeed many, he does have one thing in his favor: No matter who I meet, no matter what stories I hear, I know that I know the World’s Biggest Idiot.

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