I don't know about anyone else, when I was just barely older than the sandwich I ate two weeks ago, I started reading some comic books. I did not read that many, but I did have a small group of superheroes that I liked even to this day: Spiderman, Iron Man, Superman, the Incredible Hulk, Batman, and the Green Hornet. Whenever their shows or movies came on, I could not wait for the opening credits. I just enjoyed them. Even my nickname (Joker) invokes the memory of the Dark Knight, not the Mets pitcher Matt Harvey, but of Batman (a.k.a. the Caped Crusader) and Robin (a.k.a. the Boy Wonder).
Times are rough. I figured that these superheroes may have run out of time and may be retired soon. I want to help DC and Marvel by introducing them to a whole new set of superheroes, people who possess abilities like no other people. They are people with extraordinary powers. They don't brag about their superpowers, but they happily use them to help others.
Our first super hero was born to a family. Unlike Superman, he did not come to Earth in a rocket. He came as a bundle of joy to his parents who, coincidentally, had superpowers of their own. I will discuss their powers in just a bit. In any case, their child grew up like other children. He went to school, played with friends and did other activities like other children his age.
As time went on, he grew up and got married. He worked a tedious job, but he kept at it because he was taking care of his wife and family and his niece Jasmine. One of his super-children, his son, also got married and had four, beautiful children—two boys and two girls. The younger son of the superhero looked to his Dad for his superpower like his Dad did also. It turns out that all the supermen in this new family possessed the same superpower. Their power was determination. This superhero's name? Arthur the Awesome!!!
Arthur the Awesome was born to two people—his Mom and Dad—who worked very hard to raise and inspire three children, a daughter-in-law, three grandchildren, a granddaughter-in-law, and five extremely cute great grandchildren. They worked hard to provide a home for their children and take great care of their family. When other families broke up, they simply used their superpower to keep the family together despite the trials and tribulations that were thrown their way. Their superpower? Determination. Their names? They are Arthur, Sr. and Olive—the Determined Ones!!!
I have a few more. Hold on!
There is a mild-mannered hero. He has been known to travel great distances. He set up an office and also raised a family. He is unbelievably kind and generous with his time, talent, and resources. He is admired by all. He is looked up to as a pillar of his community, family, and friends. He is dedicated to everything and cares for everyone. Sometimes, his friendly demeanor gives away his secret identity, but he is not worried about it because it never stops him from carrying out his activities. Occasionally, he used to be found resisting gravity with his extraordinary athletic ability on trampolines or joking around with his nutty New York buddy. His name is Bob, and his superpower is generosity.
Then there is another superhero. She is kinda petite, but she is loaded with an amazing superpower. When people are sad or upset, she can get on a stage to sing, dance, and just entertain those kinds of people. She is energetic, talented, bright, and joyful. She is just plain wonderful. Rooms just light up when she is there. Her name is Ann, and her superpower is happiness.
There is another super couple. They have been married a long time. Both of them share the same superpowers. They are happy together. They help each other. They are each other's best friend. They raised a family and are not afraid to share a positive attitude and cheer with everyone. They get involved with people and are the model for happiness in their neighborhood. They are extremely outgoing. Their names are John and Nancy. Their superpower is love.
Finally, there is another superhero that I want to introduce to everyone. His name is Stephen. By day, he looks like any other person. But, if you look carefully at him, you will see a superhero who has served his country, married a wonderful lady, raised three awesome children, and received a cute granddaughter as a gift. He is loved by all members of his family and friends and serves as the epitome of all the good things in life that are expected of him. His superpower? Fortitude.
I can hear Robin now as he would probably say, "HOLY UNBELIEVABLE, Batman!!! Those aren’t superpowers!!"
Well, Boy Wonder, they may not be superpowers to you, but most ordinary people don't have those abilities. They are even very humble. They wouldn't even refer to themselves as superheroes, either. All I know for certain is that I don’t have any of their super qualities. Let’s look at their abilities as a group. Shall we?
Every single individual I mentioned here is actually married (Like the use of an oxymoron in my sentence? “every single……married?" Okay. Forget it. Let’s move on.). Being married means that one has to sacrifice. From there, one needs to share—heart, love, and so forth. That is a very tough thing to do. If you don’t think so, think of an object that you treasure. Now, imagine having to share it with someone else. Not easy.
They have to CONSTANTLY give. Again, all of those mentioned here have children, even grandchildren. They have to give up lots of time. They are so generous with their time and anything else they have. They may want to sleep late, but can’t because they have to go to a Parents’ Night at school or take a child to their baseball game after a long night at work just a few hours before. Let somebody try to wake me up on a Saturday morning. Not a pretty sight if I am tired and grumpy.
All of them like to spread happiness. It is not easy being happy, but these people make it look so easy. They do not advertise their pain. They do not like burdening anyone else—even their spouses—with their inner pain. They want to help others to be happy. If I had a toothache, I need an ambulance and a team of doctors.
They are all determined and awesome without exception.
Finally, they each have fortitude. They know what is right and live by it. Again, with all the temptations to do wrong, they work hard at staying on the right path as an example to others. They may fall once in a while, but they get up, dust themselves off, and get back on that path.
That’s it. These folks don’t need fancy costumes, capes, X-ray vision, the ability to fly, or stick to walls in order to be superheroes. No. They are superheroes because I look up to them for who they are and what they are able to do. They each possess qualities that I really do not have. They are an example to all. They are also very much human and, unlike the Marvel and DC characters I mentioned above, they are REAL people in my life. I admire them all without question and without exception.
So, DC and Marvel, don’t you think that these superheroes need a comic book of their own one day? I do.