"I'm a fucking transcendental spirit of an intangible nirvana. My soul is carved out of Italian marble. I don't have issues, I eat lions! Why don't you realize that? You don't realize that because I'm a fucking trans-dimensional whale-god among plankton! Paul Atriedes ain't got shit on me!" Know what's weird? We feed on the misery of others. Idolatry is no more. We are too aware. Knowledge of everybody can be found anywhere (Hi, pop culture! Hi, Wikileaks!).
A space occupied half a century ago in America by baseball heroes, war heroes, and The Splendid Splinter -- who was both! -- our admiration of the famous, skillful, and merit-worthy has become an obsessed dependence. Heroes are too much like us, flaws enhanced because we asked them to be magnified mortals, we have unwittingly bestowed the kiss of death on our former aspirations -- because our own dreams were killed years ago. Our heroes disgust us now. We share their pain and co-opt their drama, nodding assuredly at one another at their unenviable lives. We quite literally pay them to dance and then mock them for being self-indulgent twats.
The pedestal remains vacant. Anybody that attempts to ascend to it, to embrace heroics, to crown themselves, willfully or not, is dragged over a comically over-sized cheese grater. Their positive traits are warped. Their triumph is temporary. They age and wilt. They are skinned and spun. They are entirely visible, becoming more icons to be loathed for their over-exposure rather than for why they are there. There are questions we ask them:
- "Why don't you talk to the press more?"
- "Why aren't you more humble?"
- "Why do you adopt brash cliches from eras past? We're in modern times now, you know."
- "Why aren't you human?"
- "What is the statement you're trying to make?"
- "Why don't you want to be a hero -- or do you actually want that title?"
- "What is your background, and who do you think you are?"
- "Why don't you need us?"
Let's pretend for a second that we're heroes of our modern epoch being asked these questions. Here's a sample Q&A session (this is how it's done, Derek Anderson, you bearded crybaby):
Q: "It seems like you're abrasive when your facial cues are put under a microscope -- why don't you talk to us more often about them?"
A: "Well, I don't talk about them because I'm dealing with some shit that you bog-dwellers can't comprehend. Do you know how complex my fucking life is? My skills are needed in five different places today and my look-alike has to make fifteen different appearances to keep up the charade that I care what you think. You want to know what's been irking me? I'm low on caffeine right now and I'm tired. Psyche! I'm a fucking transcendental spirit of an intangible nirvana. My soul is carved out of Italian marble. I don't have issues, I eat lions! Why don't you realize that? You don't realize that because I'm a fucking trans-dimensional whale-god among plankton! Paul Atriedes ain't got shit on me! Your 'experts' have got their analysis wrong. I'm a doctor of psychology-wielding devourer of bullshit. Stop wasting my time inundating me with whatever falls out of that sphincter god sewed onto your face. Next question."
Q: "We live in an era of transparency and connectivity -- why do you stand for the golden archetypes of ages past that our fathers and grandfathers once admired, obviously trite cliches that they are? I guess what I'm asking is; what are you hiding? What about you have we not found out?"
A: "There's nothing to find, and you should swallow an ice-pick for thinking your life would personally be better without my greatness in it. You think you're at the top of the ego food chain because you pick apart the revered -- the heroes. I'm above you, and most people are. If I were a quivering mass of Facebook like the rest of you, nobody would be making any decisions around here. Heroics are more human than you've ever given them credit for. They're as universal as they are legendary. I keep my thoughts guarded. I keep my intentions distant. Understand this, when you need to find north on a compass, you can stare uphill at me. I am the right thing. I am boundless. Heroes operate outside of the rules that my enemies wish were set in stone. Smashing written laws was good enough for Moses, so it's good enough for me. Twenty-first century heroes are impotent, sexless demi-gods brewed to the lowest-common denominator. Fuck Taylor Swift. I'm not complex? I'm a trite cliche? I've forgotten better than your best. If I puked in a fountain pen and mailed it to the monkey house, I'd get better work than what you're scribbling down right now. The life I lead is so great that centuries in the future, kids will still want to be me when they grow up."
Q: "You're a little rough on the exterior -- why aren't you more humble?"
A: "Listen, I was raised on the back of a giant turtle in the middle of an ocean on a planet you've never heard of. My heroics will be lauded in hallowed halls over raised glasses of ambrosia come Ragnarok. I was genetically engineered from birth to be perfect in every way. I got dunked head first into the River Styx. It's not my fault that I look this good but it's definitely your fault that you aren't more humbled to be in my presence. I'm a role-model for all good things in the world, and I'm about to teach a lesson here: Don't tolerate whiny sacks of shit that exist only to leach and smear. You can't touch me, don't even try, you dickless human stain. Why am I not more humble? Because then I'd be you. Nobody would benefit. Because my existence would redundant without the golden wall made of guitar-shredding T-Rexes between us. Do as I say, not as I do. Muppet. Now get the fuck out of my sight before I order your sister off of Craigslist."
Q: "What is your background, who do you think you are, and what gives you the right to be a credible voice on the subjects of goodness and badness."
A: "What's my credibility? Here's my credibility: a person, me, without credibility has visibly rattled somebody, you, that thinks very highly of themselves. Get fucked, old man. Listen, if I wanted information about how shitty McCarthyism was or what public racism really looked like, I'd go to you. The issue here is that young people of this modern generation are either spineless or chained by tradition. They are told they have no credibility because their elders still live. Heroes don't wait their turn. Heroes don't wait for their certificate of credibility to arrive in the fucking mail! Heroes are dissatisfied with the inefficiency of 'that's the way it is.' What, clout is a limited commodity and I can't have any until you're done with it? No! Not in a million shitting years! The cagiest parts of our status quo must be rejected if it's to the benefit of the greater good. Do you agree? The best prove their credibility inadvertently."
Or, on the flipside, you can stop being an arrogant prick and just enjoy Pixar movies.
-- Ghost Little