I don’t have any heroes. I used to. In 5th grade we were forced into writing an essay about an inspirational person. It was to get on some council with no power. I wrote about then Philadelphia Phillies third baseman Scott Rolen. I mentioned how he always hustled and had a high batting average with runners in scoring position. The two kids that won wrote about Bill Clinton and Jesus. One of them dropped out of high school and has a drug problem. The other has severe depression. I’m satisfied with choosing the 1997 National League Rookie of the Year.
It’s not uncommon for a person to have no real heroes. The older you get, the more human you realize every one of those men you used to worship are. Athletes certainly aren’t my heroes. Neither are musicians. Actors and actresses make a living being something they’re not. I need a hero, bad.
I never liked doing reports on an inspirational person or a hero in your personal life. I usually would alternate between my parents, whichever one had more money to buy me gifts at the time. That’s heroic. Buying gifts. Santa’s a hero to lots. Kids love that guy. I’ve always wanted someone to do a report on how much of a hero I am to them. I don’t blame people for never doing it, I’ve never done anything heroic. I would love to. I sometimes fantasize about pulling a woman from a car crash. I’d go deeper into my fantasy and how she “rewards” me later on, but that would sound less heroic than me simply saving her life.
Deep down inside, I know that I have been the hero to someone, at some point. I know someone has said it to me but I can’t remember who it was or why they said it. I don’t think it was ever serious though. With soldiers fighting wars, police gunning down criminals, firemen saving cats, it’s tough for me to find a niche audience to be the hero of. Kids usually think I’m cool. They always have. Younger people always look up to me for some reason. I like that. They think my bullshit, spoken from the heart, is helpful. Maybe it is. Or maybe I’ve just thrown them down a path into a deeper darkened passageway.
Someday I would like to know that I am someone’s true hero. Perhaps have someone be me for Halloween. That’s how I’ll know I truly am a hero. When a child thinks to themselves “Who would strangers most like to give candy to?” and my name pops up into their head. Move over Spiderman, Batman, and Dennis Rodman. There’s a new man who children want to be.
“I can be your hero, maybe.” – Enrique Iglesias