A few days ago, my 24 year old son asked me a question that had me smiling broadly. “Do you think Grandpop would have made a good Popeye?” He had been watching the Robin Williams movie and in his mind, this image of his gravelly voiced grandfather who had died nearly 4 years ago was superimposed over the cartoon character from my own childhood who chuckled and uttered the line that really sounds like a spiritual mantra. Clearly Popeye knew who he was and what he was called on to do with a sense of integrity, much like my father. Like Popeye, my father was a ‘sailorman’ in his early adulthood. Moish had two good eyes and never smoked a pipe, thank goodness, but he did have ‘musk-els’ (muscles:) that he liked to flex; being an athlete and all; without the anchor tattoo. He would have trusted Wimpy and given him a hamburger, not questioning that he would indeed be paid on Tuesday for a hamburger today. Not a big fan of spinach, though. He liked to dance and be a bit goofy (never saw him dance a hornpipe, though)and he had an abiding faith that all would work out in the end.
As cosmic coincidence would have it, I am reading a book written by John C. Davis (John of Peniel) after hearing him speak at Circle of Miracles and Holly Matson, called Signs Along the Path: A Guide To An Inspired Life, and I opened to page 31 to a chapter entitled…..The Tao of Popeye and whatya know, they wax poetic about that very concept. The idea of Popeye as hero is not new, but think about all of the things he needed to face in the cartoon, which he did in his own inimitable style. Week after week, his archnemisis Bluto, would attempt to make his life miserable and each week, Popeye would rise above it all. Although my mother was not a stringy Olive Oyl, she was adored by my father with the same passion and intensity that Popeye loved his preternaturally tall and skinny sweetheart.
Can you be sure who you are and what you stand for?
What is your version of I Am What I Am?
http://youtu.be/F8TRoMSG-5I I Yam What I Yam-Robin Williams