The Contras: You Don’t Want to Be a Superhero!

I wrote about Football for my last entry and almost nobody responded – serves me right for bringing sports to a nerd fight.  So let’s get a topic we can all over-analyze, superheroes.  The Superhero tournament just wrapped up – great job BTW Lamb Dance, love your stuff thanks for letting me draft off you without your knowledge or consent.  Yet I digress, I was thinking long and hard about the tournament and understand a combination of actual powers, popularity, recent movie success etc. contributed to the results.  But it doesn’t answer this question – what superhero would you actually want to be?  I thought about this for myself and came to the conclusion – none, and I don’t think you want to be a superhero either.  Let me over-explain.  Think about your favorite superheroes and what their lives would actually be like and compare that to yours?  I mean, I wouldn’t mind having Stark or Wayne’s money, but to have to put yourself through what they do?  Batman basically has to spend every minute of every day preparing both physically and mentally – there’s no Netflix and take-out rainy Sunday for Batman.  Stark seems to have a little better time, but he’s still always on call.  If you were Superman, how do you work at the Daily Planet?  Literally every second of every day somebody is being abused, robbed, starved, killed in a natural disaster – and you can stop most of those, but only if you do nothing but that 24 / 7.  What if you don’t, can you live with the guilt?  No superheroes have any semblance of a normal life –which is fine, but I don’t think they have fulfilling lives either.  The famous AA prayer about changing what you can and accepting what you can’t really is the proper advice for living a life of meaning, but also being at peace with yourself.  What if you can change almost anything?  How would you have any moments of peace or accomplishment if you had powers that put you ahead of 99.9999% of the population?

I think this is why the only superhero I’ve ever wanted to be – when I was a kid– is The Hulk.  I like the idea of being a regular person most of the time, but if something gets really out of hand my body will trigger at the right time and allow me to stop whatever the bad thing is from happening, but then I get to be normal again.  I know there are many versions of the Hulk and Banner, but the comics I first read in the late 70’s and early 80’s were pretty much like that.  I can be my normal, introverted self; read a book and drink a cup of coffee on a brisk fall afternoon – but if the neo-nazi biker gang rides into town I can take care of that too.  Anyway – who would you want to be, really want to be, forever with no backsies?  Anyone?