Okay, this is big. It calls for a big post, so apologies if you like to flick through and be done. But this is big news (in our house at the moment, at least) that must be properly documented! Steve didn’t just meet Woz. He sat down and chatted with him candidly for over an hour!!! I do believe this means his life is now complete…
There aren’t too many people in this world who would make my not-easily-impressed husband giggle like a young school girl. But an Apple co-founder? That’s one of them.
When the guys at Steve’s work found out Steve Wozniak (affectionately known as Woz to his legions of fans around the world) would be visiting Melbourne as part of his series of talks in various cities, they made themselves known to him. These days, that largely consists of following someone on Twitter and striking up conversations with them on things they’re interested in. Turns out, one of the things that interests Woz is a good burger.
Thinking he had nothing to lose, Steve’s colleague offered to take him to the best burger place in Melbourne when he was here. I’ll take you up on that, Woz replied. Ok, said Steve’s workmate.
Nobody thought he was actually going to get to meet him. But on Tuesday night, the colleague shared a meal with one of the most approachable, easy-going, unaffected and disarming “celebrities” I’ve ever heard of. They left the meet-up with Woz inviting Steve’s co-worker to come back the following evening with the others at Steve’s company who were beside themselves (in a totally “keep cool, act-casual” kinda way, of course) and hang with him. Just them. And one of their life-long idols. We are talking about techno geeks of the highest order here. If it weren’t for Steve Wozniak (and Steve Jobs) these guys wouldn’t have Apple products to salivate over day in, day out, and service their Mac-loving customers.
If you were on Twitter or Facebook with me the other night, you probably thought I was making it up.
I may also have unnecessarily teased Steve. Just a little…
But as the night wore on and Woz remained unreachable (he had given them his personal mobile number, something I thought was IMPOSSIBLE – they must be mistaken, he just reeled off a number, surely), it was looking kinda bleak. But the guys were not giving up! They even went to the city to wait for him…… just to be closer to where he was. Just in case he, y’know, suddenly became available. I began to have this half-pity, half-unsurprised feeling. I was SO disappointed for Steve!
The plans fell through. In my parallel Twitterverse, I thought I had jinxed them for mentioning it. I haven’t confessed my admission to Steve….
He was, of course, pretty disappointed. And when they found out they’d also missed an opportunity to chat over some fries and a burger the night before (who doesn’t love a burger meal, after all) with Woz and their other workmate – who had had a one-on-one chat with the guy all night – the colleague was ribbed good-naturedly.
So imagine their surprise when, during the weekly management meeting the following morning, the Service Manager got called out to an urgent message. He came back in, apparently frustrated his wife had gone behind his back…… she had emailed Woz and given him the fanboys’ sob story at missing out on meeting him (as you do). And Steve Wozniak had replied just minutes ago and said if they could come meet him downstairs at his hotel “now” he’d love to share a pot of tea with them!
I’m pretty sure all was forgiven of the wife. And I would have loved to be a witness to the hopeful excited faces on these boy-men managers sitting around the boardroom table, all eyes turning towards their CEO……
“Go!” he said. “Get out of here, go meet him.”
I bet they ran. I bet they were grinning and shaking. What nerds! I love nerds. They are my favourite people to hang out with. *cough*I may also be one, just slightly*cough*
I didn’t know any of this, of course, and was carrying on with my day. I may have also spent a bit too much time with idle Woz-related disappointed tweets….
Then, around lunchtime Steve phoned me and just casually said, “I’m not at work. I’m in the city. Yeah… just had tea with Woz.” I screamed it on Twitter (you were all busy…. it almost slipped by unnoticed) and told my friends on Facebook.
I posted the photo that Steve had emailed to me and one of my mates made the observation it was almost like a sequel to the movie “Twins” (whereas, I said it looked rather like a middle-aged spread-affected C3PO had stolen an Ewok and tucked it under his arm), at which point my quick-witted brother knocked this up and posted it:
Oh. My. God. What a day. I was so pleased for the guys. The photos of them with Woz are testament to how much this meant to them, they just all look so damn happy. I may even have cried a little bit. Shuddup. And yes… I am a sap.
As any true loyal Foursquarer would, Woz even “checked in” during the meet-up.
SO there you have it. Steve, Jason and Jeremy spent just over an hour shooting the breeze in a café at Melbourne Docklands with STEVE WOZNIAK! No fanfare, no entourage…. the guy just sounds like an utter Legend. In every sense of the word. Cannot even begin to tell you how much this has meant to my Steve. My faith in a kind and generous world “just because” and “if you can, why not do” is once again restored.
Let me put this into perspective for you a little: That very day, he had spoken to a roomful of paying delegates for around two hours – tables of ten were $1,000 per seat. There is currently a competition being run to meet and have dinner with Woz at his favourite restaurant in Silicon Valley. The Apple fans are scrambling to win it, submitting their 11 questions in the hopes of nabbing the prize.
And these guys from Melbourne just took a chance and have now befriended the guy! Sure, he may forget they exist by next month but I’d like to think….not? He’s more accessible than you’d think, but I reckon that someone of his obviously high intelligence and *that* kind of differently-wired brain (anyone who lives with a true tech-head, geek, nerd, computer programmer, “I build computers, they speak to me”, app developer…. okay getting the picture? knows: these Homosapiens have some quirks that are different to the rest of us mere mortals) sensed that he was with some of His People at that table. ’sall I’m sayin’….
Woz even signed my head. Sort of.
I just have to finish by saying…… Sam, you are an ABSOLUTE cracker of the utmost kind. Huge thanks to you for making this happen! (of course, now I am going to have to really lift my game in the “good wife” stakes… so, uh, yeh… thanks a lot…. I forgive you!).
And thanks, of course, to a top bloke named Steve. The name of all top blokes everywhere, in my experience.