Steele Drivin' Man 16/?
Date: Friday, November 08, 2002
Anne Rose <>

All that running around has given Fred a lot to talk about! As usual, guess
the ep (but it's pretty obvious in this one).

Thanks again to my fantastic sharp-eyed editor Lauryn, and to Susannah, for
LA authenticity.

Nancy, you may archive. As usual your feedback is appreciated.


Steele Drivin' Man 16/?
Date: October 23, 1985
Mileage: 50,897
Maintenance: Rotate tires, replace starter

I know over the past three years I've had a variety of passengers I could
never have imagined, and some pretty odd cargo, but I believe a limo full of magazines is about the strangest thing I've come across yet. But I'll get back to that.

Tuesday morning I took Mr. Steele to this warehouse district in Venice. I
wasn't too keen on the neighborhood, so I pulled right up in front of the
address he gave me and parked it. The door said 'Veenhoff Photography', but it didn't look like Veenhoff, whoever he is, was doing too well for himself. Mr. Steele looked like he was going to do a little work on the door, and I think he was kind of surprised when it opened easily for him. He went in real slowly, and I kept an eye on things.

I saw a woman in a waitress uniform go in the front door, and she looked
pretty harmless so I didn't worry about her. I wonder if I should have,
though, because a few minutes later I heard a crash from inside. I jumped
out of the car and went for the door. As I went in I heard a fight going
on, but by the time I got to the studio Mr. Steele had finished laying some guy out on the floor. He straightened his tie and we left.

After I dropped Mr. Steele off at Century City, I was on the way to pick up his stuff at the cleaners when Miss Krebs called me on the car phone. She
sounded pretty shook up and asked me to pick her up at some place on
Melrose. Since she sounded so frantic I got there as fast as I could.

She wasn't alone though, and after I heard them talking I realized this was Veenhoff. I was not impressed. From the look of him and his studio I would
guess that if he were a little more organized and a lot less slobby, he
could be doing better, business-wise.

I asked Miss Krebs how she'd gotten over here to Melrose but she wouldn't
answer me. After I thought a minute, it occurred to me that I had seen the
Auburn in the parking lot earlier in the day, but it wasn't there when I
dropped off Mr. Steele. She had to have driven the Auburn, but where was

I took them to Rossmore and Miss Krebs asked me to wait. Not five minutes
passed and they were back again û Miss Krebs acting like an out of control
tugboat, and Veenhoff the overloaded barge. I took them to Miss Holt's
place and went back to the office.

Later on in the day I took Mr. Steele and Miss Holt to a campaign
headquarters on Wilshire for Ford Stevens, whoever that is. On the way they were discussing this Veenhoff character, and Miss Holt was certainly not
giving out a lot of information. Mr. Steele was very jumpy, and kept looking behind us. We made eye contact, and I knew he was worried about that Chrysler. I'd seen it. When I parked I saw them pull in around the corner behind us. Miss Holt went inside, and Mr. Steele flashed some bills at me and told me to go to Santa Barbara for a steak. I knew what he was
thinking. Well, that would have been fine if I thought that would have
pulled that Chrysler off their scent, but I had a feeling that since they
were good enough to tail me from Century City in heavy traffic, those guys
knew what they were doing, and weren't going to follow me all the way to
Santa Barbara. I don't think they were dumb enough to not notice that Miss
Holt had gone inside - I think she was the whole point of our being tailed.
Somehow I felt like I had seen those two men before anyway.

They pulled out when I went around back to let Mr. Steele out. I'm glad I
listened to my little voice, because a few minutes later when I came around the corner Mr. Steele and Miss Holt were out on the sidewalk again, and I
picked them up. How would they have gotten back to the office if I'd gone
to Santa Barbara - take the bus?

It was getting dark by the time I delivered Mr. Steele and Miss Holt to her place. I decided to hang around just in case. I was four pages into my new
Batman when that Chrysler pulled up. I slunk down in my seat but I didn't
really need to because they were busy watching Miss Holt and Mr. Steele get into her car. One of them got out and went into her building, and the other took off after the Rabbit.

I followed the guy up the stairs and heard him bang on the door. I tried to stay close, but I shouldn't have worried, because Miss Krebs made quick work of him with a statue! That put her in full panic mode and she and Veenhoff flew down the stairs. I dragged the guy out into the hall and locked Miss Holt's door. I figured the fewer questions we had to answer later, the better off we'd be. I took Miss Krebs and Veenhoff back to the office - it took the whole trip for her to calm down.

Wednesday morning I was out back talking to one of the guards. Mr. Steele
and Miss Krebs were nearby saying goodbye to Veenhoff. We all watched a
flatbed truck pull through the lot. I couldn't believe what I saw so I had
to get a closer look. There was the Auburn, in almost too many pieces to be recognizable for a car. If it weren't for the majority of the boattail
being in one piece, I wouldn't know what it was. It was a shambles. I
looked over at Mr. Steele and thought maybe I'd better go over and help him pick his jaw up from off the pavement! Miss Krebs looked like she wanted to crawl under the nearest vehicle she could fit under.

What can I say? At first I was so upset to think that anyone could do that
to any car, especially a classic like that. The time and money it would
take to get it put back together would be enormous. Then I could feel a
nasty grin spreading across my face, as I realized how long my supercharged
competition was going to be on the rack. Someone was going to need me for
his transportation for quite a while.

In the afternoon Mr. Steele called me to pick him up, and we went on the
weirdest shopping trip we've ever been on. We started on Pico and stopped
at every convenience store, drug store and gas station for miles. At every
stop, Mr. Steele went inside and came back with an armload of magazines -
sometimes four or five, sometimes 20 - and stacked them next to him in the
back seat. I couldn't see what he was buying, so after about the fifth
store, I asked him what he was collecting. He just told me he was preparing for a ritual burning, and to drive to the next stop.

After that neighborhood, we went to the Valley. I parked around the corner
at Ventura Boulevard and followed Mr. Steele down the street, because around here he went into every place. By the time we crossed the street and did the other side on the way back to the limo, we were both struggling with a load of magazines, and then I finally got a look at what we were collecting.

He was buying copy after copy of some skin magazine called "Bedside
Babes". I thought I'd ask what in the world he wanted with so many copies
of the same porno magazine, but he was so focused on what he was doing that
I thought I'd better butt out.

We moved the car again, and went to every place in the next block. The
trunk was starting to fill up, and we were putting some serious strain on
the rear suspension. I distributed the weight as best as I could, and by
the time Mr. Steele decided we were finished, the front seat was full too.

Then Mr. Steele told me to drive to some crummy mini-mall in Koreatown, and to find some dumpsters in the alley. I kept quiet and did what I was told.
It was plenty dark by then, so I drove by my parking lights and the street
lights and found the dumpsters. Then Mr. Steele took load after load of the magazines, and threw them in the bins! I helped him unload, and it took a
good fifteen minutes to do the deed. I was about to pitch the last stack
when Mr. Steele stopped me and told me not to throw those - they were for
the ritual. I know my face was full of questions, but he just smiled at me
and got back in the car. On the way to Rossmore he called Miss Holt and
asked her if she'd like to come over for a bonfire.

Dogs, movie stars, magazines-you name it, I move it.

To Be Continued---