You and the horse you rode in on.
This day started out to be a hum-dinger. (Excuse me while I giggle. I said hum-dinger.) I woke up very early and took the dog out just as the sun was starting to make her move on the sky. It was cool, autumn cool and so quiet that I could probably have heard a cricket move had one been inclined to do so. It was the kind of moment that makes you believe you are capable of thinking great and important thoughts. The kind of moment that reminds you how lucky you are to be breathing in and out. In the words of the great Lyle Lovett, it was the kind of moment "when great ideas just seem to fall down on you."
It was a spectacular morning.
And for hours after my greeting card beginning, it continued to be a near perfect day. My son and I ran errands, hit a few garage sales, drank milkshakes and laughed at everything we saw... including the garage sale that consisted only of two large blankets lying on the ground and a crusty, old fish tank. Truly the product of my raising, he felt guilty that we didn't buy anything.
And then... cue Jaws music in the background... my day went south.
Someone called me, and out of what I'm certain was nothing but love for me, took great pleasure in telling me that two people I consider very good friends had said some something pretty mean about me. Worse, they had made fun of my obsessive compulsive disorder because they saw me do something they thought was attributed to OCD.
I was completely devastated.
I am the first one to admit that from time to time I do exhibit some behaviors that "normal" people would find odd. Funny even. It's true.
For example, I have a germ phobia like no other which very often causes me to cover my hands in Germ-X and twitch a little because I had to touch a light switch someone else touched.
I can't go to bed without touching every door knob, lock, and oven burner in the house at least once, and more likely three or four times. I figure I'm doing pretty good with that, considering that years ago I would get stuck touching the burners and have to touch them forty or fifty times before I could stop.
I cannot drink coffee unless I put enough cream in it so that it's the color of faded khaki's. Wait a minute. That's not OCD. That's just because I make terrible coffee that's so strong it walks up to me every morning and introduces itself.
I'm a little weird. I get that. And I am always the first one to point out what a doofus I am. When someone else points it out however, that's not nearly as funny.
But I've figured out what to do to make myself feel better and at the same time make those women sorry they ever laughed at me.
When I was there wallering around in my great big pit of pity and having one heck of a woe is me good time, I came up with a plan. A plan so brilliant and so innovative, I can't believe I didn't think of it earlier.
I will become a Superhero.
Think about it. No one laughs at a Superhero. No way. When's the last time you heard anyone poke fun at the Green Hornet or The Incredible Hulk? It simply does not happen. On the contrary, it's their very greenness and their notable incredibleness that makes you respect them.
I figure it can't be that hard to make yourself a Super Hero. All you need is some sort of personality disorder to start with and then you simply fall into a puddle of nuclear waste, thereby making said personality disorder the very basis for your super powers.
I have the disorder. Lots of them. It is only a matter of picking one. And it just so happens that one of the two jobs Mr. Man holds is that of security guard at our friendly neighborhood nuclear power plant. I save all of our used margarine containers so I'll have him bring me home a butter tub full of nuclear waste. They have plenty of it just lying around not doing anybody any good. Surely they can spare a little for a would be Superhero.
All I really need to worry about is my Super name. That's the tough part. The name is the most important part of the thing. It needs to be descriptive so there is no mistaking what I'm all about when I arrive on the scene.
If you're an ordinary citizen walking home from Mr. Green's corner grocery when suddenly the sacks are snatched from your arms by a fleeing felon, you don't want the added burden of wondering who the heck "The Chartreuse Pony" is and how he can possibly help you get your groceries back. No way.
What you want to see is the guy with the big red cape and an "S" on his t-shirt. His name says it all. It says, "I'm not just a guy wearing tights. I'm a Super guy wearing tights who is fully capable of getting sacks full of Pringles and eggs back to their rightful owner".
That's what I need. A name that says who I am and immediately instills complete trust and confidence in what I can do.
A name like Obsessive Avenger. Or Captain Compulsive. Or Super Freak.
Oh my gosh! That's it! Super Freak.
It says, "I'm not just a freak. I'm a Super Freak. I'm Super
Freaky". And the best part is, I'll already have a theme song. Every time I show up to right some wrong or foil some bad guy plot, Rick James will be heard in the background warning the evil doers not to take me home to Mother.
OK. So I have my Super name and my Super theme song. Now I need my Super outfit. Wonder Woman snagged the good costume years ago. I would have loved to have had some of those "ching-ching" bracelets and that cool little tell me the truth rope. That rope would have come in handy over the years.
"Are you only telling me I'm beautiful and funny because you want to take a nap with me?" An honest answer to that question could have changed my life!
I am quite partial to red, even though red has been done to death in the Superhero wardrobe. It's a powerful color. But, I don't think any Superhero has dressed completely in red from head to toe yet. Maybe I'll do that.
How about red leather short shorts and a red leather bustier? A long red sequined cape. Thigh high red boots. And naturally I'll need a red tiara with an "S" on it and a long, red leather whip.
Uh-oh. I think I just went from Super Freak to Super Hooker. Better tone it down a little. I'll lose the whip.
I'll get dressed every morning after I take my son to school and fly around town fighting injustice and battling evil villains.
Wherever there are germs, I'll be there to remind people to wash their hands twenty-one times.
Wherever someone has left the house without unplugging the curling iron, I'll be there to unplug it and then check it and re-check it and check it again.
Wherever a woman is forced to use a public toilet, I'll show up with my Super powerful can of Lysol.
Men will love me. Women will want to be me. And those mean old ladies that said nasty things about me will see me on Oprah talking about my Super Self and be so envious of my Superness that they will swear by all that is holy that if ever I forgive them, they will never make fun of me again.
What a good plan. I have completely impressed myself with my ability to think outside the box when solving a problem. That's a very Super thing to do.
It's such a good idea that I should probably patent it. I mean, if I don't, every time someone gets their feelings hurt, they'll be rolling around in nuclear waste and buying leather. And let's face it. We don't want everybody to be Super.
I've got to quit writing now. I'm going to go to Oprah's website and submit a couple ideas for her show.
What do you think of these?
"Superheroes And The Mean Old Biddies That Used To Laugh At Them"
"I Used To Be A Geek, But Now I'm A Super Freak"
"Superhero Extreme Make Overs: How Nuclear Waste Can Take Ten Years Off Your Face"
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Copyright © 2004, Sherri Bailey
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