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Gil Chooses His Nickname

Well, I asked him to choose, anyhow, between "Agent Zero," the blogosphere's preferred nickname, and "The Puzzler," a name I thought I had thought of myself but one that I possibly subconsciously borrowed from Fat Lever over at TheWizznutzz, who are getting more ink this week than DeShawn Stevenson and The Puzzler AKA Agent Zero at a tattoo party.

Anyhow, "The Puzzler" he immediately rejected; "Nah, I don't want that, he's a killer," he said. True, true.

And Agent Zero? "Ooooh, I like that, I like that," he said. He repeated "I like that" several times.

But it turns out he already had a nickname picked out for this year; "The Stealth." Which isn't bad. This came from the "military dude" he was working out with in San Francisco. Gil asked him why more people didn't know about him.

"I'm Stealth, kid," the military dude responded.

(I was reading this short story by Delmore Schwartz the other day. You've probably never heard of him. I hadn't. But in the story, the narrator is woken up before dawn by a stranger from England who takes him to a track meet at a high school baseball stadium at which one runner kisses a woman on a billboard, the narrator's mother ignores him, the Englishman reads off various gruesome tragedies from the newspaper, the narrator's five brothers, all named after European heads of state, get in a rumble in the middle of a race, and then the winner won't stop running, and then an official has him killed, and then the five brothers are all shot by women in uniforms. It's weird, in other words. All the details are a little unsettling, but it's still pleasing, somehow, and by the end, nothing really surprises you. I feel the same way when talking to The Stealth.)

The military dude also used to call Gil "The Machine," but he thought he'd go by "Stealth" or "The Stealth" until this "Agent Zero" thing came up.

DeShawn Stevenson wasn't into "Agent Zero" as a nickname, but then he came up with a suggestion of his own: "Nutso." Which is another fine suggestion.

"We've got two Nutsos on this team," Stevenson said, referring to himself and The Puzzler, aka Agent Zero, aka The Stealth, aka The Machine, aka Nutso One.

As for Gil's shoes, today he was wearing Pilrahnas, but he's also got the Gil-Zeros down here in Richmond and he thinks he'll wear those for the games. K.G. has requested a pair, and Antonio Daniels wants 10 or 12. Gil is very pleased with the final product, although he suddenly thought of something when we were talking.

"I should have named them Agent Zeros," he said. "That's the next name. That's Part Two."

By Dan Steinberg  |  October 4, 2006; 4:44 PM ET
Categories:  Wizards  
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Next: Gil Endorses Red White and Blue

Comments ZEROS...after...the...nickname...we...gave...him?

Steinz, you're killing us softly...with love.


Posted by: WizzNutzz | October 4, 2006 4:46 PM | Report abuse

The Stealth is pretty good, but Agent Zero is pure gold. Hopefully it's only a matter of time until he adopts Agent Zero.

Posted by: Bullets Fever | October 4, 2006 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Steinz, you are killing. Killing! Your incites have taught me to dream again -- and in dreams begin responsibilities. 46 wins this year!

Posted by: august s. | October 5, 2006 6:35 AM | Report abuse

August S., nice D-Schwartz reference. I would wager my Wizards media guide that this blog has now crushed the previous record for Delmore Schwartz references in a sports blog.

Posted by: SportsBog | October 5, 2006 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, I wasn't gonna say anything... Just assumed you came up with it on your own (not that I didn't seethe over it). Anyway, I agree with Gil that The Puzzler sounds a little villainous. Personally, I like Puzzles, because it applies to Gilbert's quizzical, spirited, puppy-like nature. Not that we need to settle on one; I think this guy's gonna continue doing and saying nickname-inspiring things on a regular basis for a long time to come.

Posted by: Fat Lever | October 5, 2006 8:39 AM | Report abuse

Fat, I swear, I looked at WN Tuesday night and then used "The Puzzler" for the first time Wednesday morning, without any conscious recollection in my head of your genius. I guess they say the last thing you read before you sleep tends to stick with you somehow, but any theft was strictly unintentional.

Posted by: SportsBog | October 5, 2006 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Why not the "street name" he offered up when the Miami cops stopped him and Storey? Zero Hero.

Posted by: tp | October 5, 2006 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Nice Job on the DS pull. Solid. Here is a nice little snippet courtesy of Wikipedia:

In 1962, [Delmore] Schwartz began teaching Creative Writing at Syracuse University. One of his students was future singer-songwriter Lou Reed, who dedicated several songs to his mentor (most notably "European Son"). Schwartz reportedly told Reed at one point, "You can write--and if you ever sell out and there's a Heaven from which you can be haunted, I'll haunt you," and Reed never forgot.

Gil Rules

Posted by: ArenasAmongus | October 5, 2006 3:35 PM | Report abuse

agent zero is da best if not the stealth the other two are wack

Posted by: RSC617 | October 29, 2006 8:12 AM | Report abuse

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