For the Last Time: Nomen Omen
I get emails.
I get comments here and on other people's blogs.
Even in person, people who recognize my picture — or otherwise know or figure out that I'm me — ask what the heck does "Steg (dos iz nit der šteg)" mean?
So in order to save myself the trouble of explaining it over and over again, I've decided to put up this post and link to it somehow in my profile.
...has nothing whatsoever to do with stegosaurus dinosaurs. However, due to the fact that it seems like every time someone sees "Steg" they think of hordes of rampaging platey-backed dinosaurs, I eventually embraced the connection. After all, dinosaurs are pretty cool, although when I was your typical nerdy little dinosaur-loving kid my favorite was triceratops, not stegosaurus.
Steg is actually nothing more than a nickname my cousin made for me in middle-school, as part of a reciprocal nickname-bestowing game between him and my brother. The names started with part of our names, and slowly mutated — always in sync with each other — through such stages as Septagon, Octagon, and Hexagon. Eventually, at the end of the game we were (the much more concise) Steg, Ag, and Jag. And Steg is the only one that stuck.
...is a transliteration of the Yiddish sentence דאָס איז ניט דער שטעג (dos iz nit der shteg), which means "that is not the way". I once took some Yiddish classes, and encountered the word שטעג šteg [remember: š (S-haček or S-caron) is the same thing as sh], meaning way or path. I thought it was cool that it looks like a Yiddish version of my nickname, with sh instead of s, and so used the expression dos iz nit der šteg (which can also be understood, btw, as "you're off the derekh!") to mean something along the lines of hey, nice to meetya, my name is Steg — not Šteg — and don't you forget it!
...is because in college I was in a LARP (Live Action Role Playing) group, with a fairly typical medieval-fantasy theme. My character was a human monk who grew up among goblins (in order to have an interesting backstory) and therefore cast his 'spells' in the Goblin language (which I made up). Unfortunately, there were infighting/politics problems in the gaming group and it fell apart. A year later, me and a few friends decided to bring back the game, but with a somewhat different setting and storyline. We took the same fantasy world, and changed it a bit — including making the new game take place 20 years or so after the events of the old game. So all our old characters became big important figures in the new game, who we could use as plot devices while usually playing new regular characters. My old char became the [non-goblin, as i've mentioned] Goblin King.
If it comes out as anything other than boxes, under "THE HALL OF THE GOBLIN KING" at the top of the page there should be something that looks like (make sure your webbrowser is set to Unicode!)