Friday, May 13, 2011


We all have Heroes.   Schoolchildren almost always name a Superhero (fictional) or movie star or sports star as THEIR heroes.    Grown-ups may waver toward the same, and it’s difficult to understand the values of those whose idols and standard-bearers merely mouth someone else’s words onscreen, or can master the art of controlling a ball/car/puck/skis/skates /boat/horse or deck of cards. 

Our own Heroes are a simpler sort.   For example, my Sister-in-Law who is raising her three Grandchildren, all under seven, and all of whom may have been damaged by their mother’s habits and neglect.  A neighbor whose handicap does not prevent his showing up for work on time, six days a week, to cheerfully bag our groceries, always making kind conversation as he works. 

All of the parents who get up and go make a living every day, taking any job they can find, in order to support their families,   young folks who work two jobs between and after classes in order to put themselves through college, and  the supremely dedicated Police, Firefighters/EMTs/Schoolteachers whose cities and towns couldn’t in a million years afford to pay them what they’re REALLY worth.

And Chris has had a quasi-Hero since childhood, a rather strange-but-understandable icon to look up to:

Chris loves Wile E.    He's his hero, for he never gives up.    He's the John Cameron Swayze line personified:  He Takes a Lickin' and Keeps On Tickin'.

For Chris' birthday several years ago, Caro painted him the Wile E. Coyote coat of arms---cannon, bomb, and anvil, with a portrait of the Big Guy himself emblazoned on the top.    The motto banner itself is composed of two Latinish words: PERSEVERUS PERSEVORUM.    I made them up---they sound good, in an escutcheonish sort of way, and are our translation of Keep On Keepin' On.   They are certainly words to live by, even if you aren't a member of  the Eternalii Famishus breed, don't live in the desert, and don't have a hankering for some Roadrunner Stew on your menu.

See that big ole nose on the right up there in the picture?   That's a stuffed-animal likeness of Wile E., suspended like a carnival prize (and may have BEEN one).    He and the picture hang right over where Chris stands to dress every day---like his own modern, zany version of the Desiderata.    Occasionally, I'll catch a little corner-of-my-eye glimpse of the little figure in the dark as I pass, and my sleepy mind sees it almost like some surreal fuzzy dusty version of a crucifix on the wall.

Wile E. Coyote has an aim in life, he pursues his goal with fervor and drive, he rises from his falls, his injuries, his bruised head and pride and feelings, and just gets right back up, opens another box, another ploy, and tries again.   And that impeccable credit at the Acme Company adds to his resume, as well.

I think we could all learn a lot from Wile E., in terms of determination and zeal.    I know I need to, and though I don't intend to go wheel-footing off a cliff, adopting that resigned expression as the anvil falls toward my head, I'm gonna get some gumption and step out there and ACCOMPLISH some things.  

I wonder if Acme has a website.      


Janie said...

I love it. I grew up on Wylie and too admire his stamina. The picture is delightful. We all need reminders to remain stalwart especially in the times we live. So many are losing everything and have little hope. Hope,that companion of faith is so necessary now. Wylie is such a cute hero for us. Thanks once again for brightening our day.

Tonja said...

I have always loved those cartoons. I can remember when I wondered why he never was hurt for very long. And, I remember the day that I realized that those little 'scientific names' were really funny. Loved this!

Cape Coop said...

My daughter is my hero. Mr. Coyote being a close second, of course.

Holly said...

This is such a wonderful post to celebrate the heroes in our life! Thank you forthat wonderful reminder.
be blessed!

Kat aka Beachkat said...

I've always loved that cartoon. Priceless. You're so right...Wile never ever gave up!


Beverly said...

Rachel, I will now always think of your Chris and Wile as a dynamic pair.