Friday, September 07, 2012

Just To Be Very Clear

In sociology, there are labels attached to people in groups that define what roles people play. One is The Star. The Star is exactly who it sounds like. The Star is the person around whom the group revolves. This person is the one everyone considers their best friend. This person is kind enough and generous enough and open enough and loving enough to encompass everyone in the group. The reason everyone considers this person their best friend is because this person is each of their best friend. This person is not me.

Another role in a group is The Power Behind The Throne (PBTT). This is the person the Star considers his or her best friend. This is the person who, when The Star needs just a minute, The Star calls The PBTT. This person is not the face of anything. This person is not a sidekick. This person is the Doc Holiday to Wyatt Earp; Han to Luke; Zoe to Mal. This person is me.

Recently, I've had some unexpected and humbling things said about me. And I don't mean humbling, as in "damn right I'm that good, but I don't want to come off as arrogant, so I'll say I'm humbled" but honest to God humbled. I would tell you what they were, but I can't bring myself to do so. Trust that it is appropriate for some humility in the face of it all.

My favorite though is that I was called Samwise Gamgee.

In fairness, Sam comes off a little sidekick-y in the beginning, but watch long enough, and you realize he's not. He is, indeed, the power behind the throne.

He carries. He is constant. He is there. Remember this exchange:

 Sam: [Both are overcome by exhaustion] Do you remember the Shire, Mr. Frodo? It'll be spring soon. And the orchards will be in blossom. And the birds will be nesting in the hazel thicket. And they'll be sowing the summer barley in the lower fields... and eating the first of the strawberries with cream. Do you remember the taste of strawberries?
Frodo: No, Sam. I can't recall the taste of food... nor the sound of water... nor the touch of grass. I'm... naked in the dark, with nothing, no veil... between me... and the wheel of fire! I can see him... with my waking eyes!
Sam: Then let us be rid of it... once and for all! Come on, Mr. Frodo. I can't carry it for you... but I can carry you!

This was the exchange that caused the person to say I was Samwise. And this person is right. I will own it. I carry. I am constant. I am there.

But there is another quote of Sam's. One most people didn't even notice at the time, let alone remember:

 Sam: [tearing the spider silk away from Frodo's face] Oh no! Frodo... Mr. Frodo, wake up... Don't leave me here alone. Don't go where I can't follow... Wake up.

And this is what I want to be very clear about: I am selfish. I am a selfish, self-centered, self-serving bitch. I am not The PBTT for just anyone. There is this small group of people... I need them. I have accepted this about myself and about them and I need them. I will not give them up without a fight. Because I will follow them anywhere. I will carry. I will be constant. I will be there. But I don't want them going anywhere I cannot follow, so I will fight. And I will be stronger than whatever it is that I have to fight; I will be strong enough to carry whatever I have to carry. And I will win. Because I need them.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. And it will serve people well to remember them.


Hermes said...

I think before these movies, I might have agreed. But I don't think Austen captured Sam very well. So, I will call you... Ishmael?

BostonPobble said...

GOML! ~ I actually looked for pictures from the animated version out of the '70s (damn, they did a lot of good drugs back then, if their animation is any indication ~ digressing Pobble...) but couldn't find them. So you get a more current version. The concept is the same. You, however, may call me Ishmael. Hell, you can call me pretty much anything; whatever it is, I've been called worse.

Ian Lidster said...

Self-centered, self-serving bitch or not, you wear it well and I am very happy you're my blogger friend. So there.

BostonPobble said...

Ian ~ Thank you. I try to wear most things well, or at least with flair. I'm very happy you're my blogger friend, too.