Noblesse Oblige

Although some won’t admit it, we all have our fantasies. Some are the product of the moment, born of the very human urge to top those around us. A slight, real or imagined, usually causes anyone to imagine some action against the offender. Such imaginary actions range from the retort that came too late to say to actually imagining bodily harm. Being products of the moment, they usually depart as quickly as they arrived. I say usually, for there are those individuals out there who can’t or won’t brush off any such
insult, real or imagined, and actively seek revenge. We read about them all of the time and they deserve no further notice.

Then there are those of us who, at one time or another, have constructed very elaborate fantasies. While we may construct them in childhood or adolescence, they do persist in the adult psyche and can, on occasion, be a comfort. Before I proceed further, you need to read Erik’s blog at Go on, read it, I can wait.

Did you read it? Yeah, right. I am sure most of you just dutifully clicked on that link above and read a very interesting piece of writing. If you didn’t, well go on, do it. Now!

Good, I see you’re back. Nice piece of writing wasn?t it. The reason for my insistence is that I wanted to explain a fantasy world which is the exact opposite and, perhaps, more common; that of the child who fantasizes about being an adult. I don’t mean just growing up and getting out on your own, there’s no fantasy in that. I mean imagining revisiting childhood friends and acquaintances as an adult; a very successful adult.

If you tend to be the studious type with two left feet, you tend to be in the outer circle as a child. You are permitted into the inner circle when it is convenient, but your name is never at the top of anyone’s list. Having had to suffer through the agony of being picked
to play on a team during gym class drives that point home. Although never dead last to be picked, it was close on occasion. And in neighborhood games it was not unusual to hear, “we’ll play with three on our side if you’ll take John.” For some of us, sports
definitely do not build character.

At such times, I took refuge in my adult world. Suave, witty and urbane in a Cary Grant sort of way, I was always exceedingly successful and everyone sought after my opinion. To gild the lily, I was an accomplished musician and, although I had played
professionally, I now only did so as my other obligations would allow. Even so, I would occasionally deign to amuse the masses with a performance, dashing off a complicated organ work like Boellmann’s Toccata from Suite gothique to wild applause. Noblesse oblige.

I was a man of letters and had written wildly popular novels. At one point, in my imagination, I had been invited back to my high school to give the Commencement Address. The students in the graduating class just happened to be the children of people in my graduating class. I was, as usual, brilliant.

Whack!! The welt on my arm was rapidly turning into a bruise. I had failed, again, to catch an easy pop fly. Let’s face it, I was afraid of the damned ball and usually cringed with my mitt held in the general direction of the incoming ball. The resulting derision of my ?teammates? drove any thought of brilliance from my head. Still, I did look ahead to sitting down to a piano in a crowded room, dashing off a medley of Gershwin tunes. The piano player, you see, gets all the girls.