My Hero | It will always be You

My grandfather and I.jpg

To be loved unconditionally. A gift that no one can ever take away from you.

For my grandfather

The man whom I called “little father” was taken from me just as I stepped from childhood into my teens. I miss him so. Yet his boundless, generous love is mine still, many years after I could sprint down the stairs to greet him at the end of a hard’s day work, to be enveloped in the warmth of his arms, my cheek grazed by the familiar stubble as I reached in for a kiss. His hands smelt of fresh-cut grass… the scent of the earth in his hair.

He taught me to delight in the simplest of pleasures: a loaf of bread fresh out the wood-burning bowls of a clay furnace, the feel of the grassland against my bare feet, the smell of mushrooms picked in the woodlands, the white froth atop the mug of milk that was mine every morning. Summers turned into autumns under the mellow sun of my childhood, winds caressed my hopeful imaginings, rains cooled my fears and everywhere was peace and contentment. 

I grew up at his side, a free wild thing with boyish ways, a pixy spirit. There were treasured mornings when he would bundle me up onto the back of his horse at dawn and we would take to the fields. 

I remember standing in the middle of a field peppered by the early buds of spring, breathing in deep the silence and making a wish that I would never forget that moment. Perhaps I intuited that memory is untrustworthy, that time can steal what it had once gifted freely. Perchance I foresaw a day in the far distant future – for the future is always at a distance to a child’s heart – when I would need to come back to that moment of stolen bliss.

Daily Prompt: Heroic

Despicable Me

Let’s Talk Opinion in conversation with In This Moment

You will always be the villain in someone else’s story. There will always be someone around-whether you know them personally or not-who will hate everything you ever do just because it’s you doing it. … If you are going to put yourself out publicly in anyway, if you dare to bare  your soul to the world SOMEONE is going to hate you for it.”

villain g

Have you been the villain in someone else’s story? I know I have. Multiple times. It used to bother me, but then I realised that being the villain is not all that bad. You know what they say: all publicity is good publicity.

Being the “bad guy” can have its advantages. Heroes have very high expectations to rise up to. Just think of the pressure! Every good deed they make, every decent thing they say is taken for granted. After all, that’s what heroes are supposed to do. But villains – the freedom! – you can’t go wrong. Going wrong is just what villains do. Can’t blame a wolf for doing what wolves do. And every good thing you ever do it’s a bonus and the world stands to attention.

He-he. I think I may act the villain more often from now on. It all sounds rather delicious to me.

But what makes a villain? Moreover… what makes a good villain? Now that’s given me some food for thought. Let’s talk recipes for success, fellow villains!

To be a true villain, we must wrap our malevolent heads around what it means to be good or else we’re wasting our time.

I think I’ve come up with one: a leader not a follower be. We’ll make up our own minds as to what we think and what we do, and let others rage in our wake. After all “there will always be people telling you what your motives are.” Whether they are wrong or right in their assumptions, “they won’t hesitate to tell you what you really think about something,” and to stay true to our villainous selves we must make sure to give back as good as we get. For good measure, add a sneaky cackle to your depraved actions. Everyone loves a cackling villain, don’t they?

Of course, whatever we do and say must be morally indefensible – after all that’s what us villains trade in, it’s our bread and butter – but we should come up with some skewed justification for it too, you know, so that it all makes sense for us at least. We are after all the evil products of our own experiences and beliefs. Shock and horror: it may be that we actually see everyone else as evil and ourselves as the few whose pursuits and opinions are truly admirable on this planet. We are bound to be a little self-involved that way – we are villains after all.

Now for the essential guide to becoming the best version of your “Despicable Me”:

You may want to start regarding others as intolerable waste, get rid of that all too bothersome empathy with their troubles, and start thinking that the world owes you something. Made note of that? Now we are truly on our way of being the villains they so want us to be, and when they tell us that what we do is “wrong or stupid or useless or repetitive or pointless or cruel or…you get the point” at least they’ll sleep well in the knowledge that we are doing everything we can to meet their expectations.

Next, let’s get ourselves some understandable and compelling motivations and goals. Evil for the pleasure of evil itself is hard to do well. The effect we want to go for is realistic, but chilling… What we do must look like something anyone would do given the right circumstances and enough of a push. I mean, that’s how we got to this place, didn’t we? We were pushed into it. We wanted to be good, but as they were so determined to make villains of us, we had no other choice but to do it. Started working on that torture chamber yet, anyone?

And we are not alone, mind you! We must get ourselves an army of minions and allies. They are bound to follow us wherever we go. They will respect and admire us – the great villains that we are – may even do a spot of worshiping on the side. Aww. Now that prospect warms my wicked heart. Where their goals don’t coincide with ours, fear will do the trick. We are criminally infamous after all. But beware of false allies turning against us at the crucial moment. Make sure to clip in the bud any secret plans of vengeance.

As for our opponents… Well. They can be rather irritating at times, can’t they? Hell bent on our destruction. But such persistence can be rather amusing, especially when we watch their frustration mount. (chuckle-chortle-cackle) Who’s resisted them in the past? Let this be your motto, fellow villains of the world, as -M- puts it “If you’re going to be the villain you might as well get some enjoyment out of it.”


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