Can’t break the mold, as they say.
But as my days past turn to years and those years start to pile, I have lost more and more of the fear of those flaws. For some of them can never change. And those that can change, march me more towards being a better man.
Whatever that may mean.
A storyteller died today.
Almost a century old. Born a few years after the world stood still. You know, the greatest war that so few of the modern folk pay much mind. When the world went from chaos, blood, dirt and poison littering about where there once was country, to sudden a cease. An armistice, they called it. All that hate and tension and violence, ended somehow on a perfectly aligned moment. A date and time of the same number. Symbolic and such.
That happened a century ago. The man I mentioned earlier was born a few short years after that. After all that hate and violence consumed the globe. After a whole world went to war with itself for the first time. And the world which was and is upon the day of his passing seems so full of that hate and violence again.
But perhaps to think we can never overcome only means the television and computer have been on for too long.
That storyteller, Stan, he looked elsewhere. He looked in people. And with that mind and heart, he made comic books. And gave others a place to do the same. And because of him (not exclusively, but perhaps not without) generations up to now and beyond will know heroes. Superheroes. Of all shapes, sizes, shades and sexes. They will see insurmountable struggle and the mythos of the brave. They will read stories about the vulnerability of power and the strength of the timid. A place for those on the fringes of society to shine. A place for us mutants and freaks.
He himself was not perfect. You could ask some of his co-creators, if they haven’t also kicked the bucket. No company man of something that big can do everything right. No one can. We all will fail. We all with fall. We all will do that which doesn’t make us proud, or worse. I know I have. Not unforgivably, but not to be forgotten either.
But it is about the story, not the storyteller. And what stories were told. And are. And can keep being told and growing and changing and developing with the world around us.
I tell stories. Someone reminded me today that I do. And I’ve never written a story that didn’t pull from my own life. As they have all been pulled from my own head. And though there is minimal spandex, I still take those points and try to make them more fantastic. More profound. But sometimes, I get lucky enough to need not do more than recount some feeling I may have felt and twist but a part of the plot.
And yet, I still feel there must be more done. That the works must go on and on and on.
Perhaps that is a flaw. Not knowing when to stop or slow down. Though as I see one of my other flaws as laziness, I might just break even. I tend to be a good listener, yet I have failed to do so when needed and may again, even with all the hope I have not to. I’ve caught myself talking too much. And other times too little. Or just saying the wring words. And I have on more than one occasion been the only thing standing my way for something good, or enjoyable, or valuable, or fun.
I am flawed and I pay the price. A tax, almost. But I am not in debt to my flaws. And I am not unethical or immoral, even if I am wrong at times.
To be unflawed would to be ordinary. Which in addition to no one wanting to be, no one actually is. We are all flawed. We are none of us ordinary or normal. We are diverse and different. We are proud and profound and insecure and arrogant.
But if you strive for ordinary, if you deny your flaws- you may just end up being ordinary.
And who the hell wants to be that?