10 years ago, the once and future staff of Catsandbeer.com left the comfortable confines of Baltimore County for the halls of higher learning. While Keith went to science school in Colorado for science stuff, I hobnobbed with the children of celebrities in New York. But my star turn was nothing compared to that of our friend Dr. Jeff.
Then Pre Med Freshman Jeff found himself in Amish country at the same university as Mighty Morphin Power Rangers stalwart Jason Narvy. That’s right: Dr. Jeff was going to school with Bulk’s hapless comic foil, the inimitable and decidedly unbulky Eugene “Skull” Skullovitch.
Keith and I were delighted.
The plan was simple: deceive Mr. Narvy, gain his trust, and then …
Actually, I don’t remember what we were hoping to get out of this.
But I do remember that Keith and I spent many an enthusiastic hour devising social engineering exercises to fuck with this one-hit character actor of not insignificant renown who as far as we knew never hurt anybody.
Here is an email from my old Yahoo account illustratively representative of many others of its kind. I’ve italicized Keith’s inline notes:
Sent: Thursday, October 8, 1998 12:26 AM
From: "Keith" <email@example.com>
To: "Brian" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This is kind of embarrassing, but I saw your name on a list from my best-friends college and I’ve been dying with curiosity to know if it’s really you ever since. When I saw your name I said "that name sounds awful familiar." I realized a day later that it was Jason Narvy who I knew better as "Skull." I know you probably get a lot of fanmail (this line may be a little too over-the-top) but I just had to write.
My name is Darren, which, believe it or not, is a girl’s name, as well as a guy’s. I’m a freshman right now at New York University where I plan to get a degree in psychology. Maybe I’ll write my senior thesis on the probable causes of the dysfunctionality of Bulk and Skull! I’m kidding. I’m not a stalker or anything.
If this is really you, I’d love for you to email me back. I hope you’re not mad at me for sending an email to you at school. I swear I won’t tell anyone else where you are, unless you want me to or something. Anyway, please email me back! I’m dying to know!
Darren ********* (last name goes here)
I think the idea for the girl having a guy’s name was mine. I’ve often contended it’s cool for someone to be the first hot girl to have a guy’s name (see James — now Jaime — King). So it stands to reason that I would push this curious element to add a bit of peculiar believability.
Oh, and one of my three freshman year suitemates was named Darren, so part of the plan was probably to send the emails from his school account.
For contemporaneous commentary, here are Keith’s notes on his thought process behind crafting "Darren’s" email:
- misspellings, and the grammar is purposely a little sloppy to make it seem more authentic and to give it that girly/groupie quality
- it needs to display some knowledge of who Jason Narvy is, but not too much
- is Jeff being let in on this? Jeff has the tendency to sometimes be a stupid-ass motherfucker who just doesn’t get it. I’m worried that if he is in on it, he might do something stupid to blow our cover. Ponder these words carefully, and feel free to reference the entire Jew/Yom Kippur conversation between Jeff and I as an example of him not getting it
- I think that ‘Darren’ needs to seem intelligent (she’s in college after all) but still have a naivete about her that makes her seem so innocent, so……..uncorrupted by other men
- Before anything is sent, I’d kinda like to see it, just so that I can read through it. It might be helpful to have a group troubleshooting session before each email is sent, just to make sure that we aren’t making any errors. We should keep copies of the emails (to him and from him) for cross-checking our facts. With a name like Narvy, you know you’re dealing with a smart cookie. We can’t afford to fuck this up.
Keith was right — the stakes were very high.
Neither Keith nor I can today recall what he’s referencing with "the entire Jew/Yom Kippur conversation," though Dr. Jeff has a memory like a ginkgo addicted elephant so he himself might be able to shed some light on the matter.
I’d also be remiss to not point out that in spite of any apprehension about letting Jeff in on the scheme, the good doctor would, as Keith puts it, "within years handle himself with the utmost style and grace in a certain ub3r haxx0r scheme, proving that [he] is perfectly capable of conducting a shenanigan.” I imagine the details of that wonderful tale will one day be related here after the cyber crime statute of limitations runs out.
The Almost Execution
We planned and prepped and moved ever closer to the great day we would put our fantastic scheme into action. And then we never did. I don’t remember why. I know that’s a shitty way to end the story but nothing ever happened. Sorry.
The Post Mortem and Future?
Wikipedia tells us that after earning his Bachelor of Arts in English, Mr. Narvy went on to collect a Master of Letters in Renaissance Literature in Performance from Mary Baldwin College and the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton, Virginia and then to pursue a Ph.D. in Dramatic Arts at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He also traded in his black pleather for a smart button-down and tie.
In corresponding with Keith about this article, he asked that the following message accompany its publication:
I’d like to apologize to Jason Narvy for any psychic wounds I may have contemplated inflicting upon you while you pursued your studies at the "Stanford of the lower Susquehanna River Valley."
So there you have it: the story of the time we almost fucked with Skull from the Power Rangers and then didn’t.
Would it have worked? Sadly, we’ll never know for sure. We can only hope that at some point Jason will find his way to this site and give us his best guess based on a recollection of his mindset at the time.
As you can see in the comments below, Jason Narvy (or someone who could plausibly be him) has responded to this article. This is significant for a number of reasons:
- It reminds us that the Internet is a magical, magical place.
- It reinforces the widely-shared notion that Jason Narvy is the nicest person
- It provides Keith and I with a new Jason Narvy email address so that 10 years from now I’ll be able to etherblog on my cloudsite about the time we almost got around to trying to trick Jason Narvy into, I don’t know, maybe believing that Amy Jo Johnson wanted to have a cast reunion in his pants.
Thanks, Jason for being a good sport and best wishes on logging more time in post-graduate education than Buster Bluth.