I am a person who gets the big feels from the seemingly tiny things or things that normal people don’t get big feels from. To give an example of how ridiculous my emoting can be, I remember crying in an IMAX movie about…..the sun. Yep, on a school field trip back in the days when I was teaching we went to see the movie on the solar system. I cried. The music was big, in my head it could’ve been Holst Planets and that reminded me of my days as a band nerd. Regardless, if there is something meant to evoke an emotion looking at you sad TV commercials with animals, there will be tears. I have cried in front of paintings, at baseball games, at restaurants when a little kid’s face lights up because they get a cupcake and because of sunsets. I emote hard. It is something that I have come to warn people about so they don’t think I’m sad for some reason. Given that I will cry for something small and simple that might not have been intended to warrant a response, just try to imagine the mess of a being I am when a movie or song or show is meant to be emotional. I swear some movies have left me dehydrated from tears.

I just recently re watched the Lord of the Rings movies. Yep, I cried. I couldn’t even control it, my eyeballs just literally produced tears. I mean at least I know darned well how this story is going to end, but I even got choked up before the scenes knowing that they were coming. There are a few scenes in that series that wreck me, and at least a few other people I know because it’s a normal reaction. I can’t carry it for you, but I can carry you. I mean, if you don’t get choked up hearing Sam say that, I’m not sure we can be friends. But, this last time I watched that scene I was reminded of what I thought all those years ago when I first saw it.

Everyone needs a Sam.

Sam isn’t just a sidekick, there’s more to the whole relationship than that, so the word sidekick just won’t cut it. This of course sent Monkey into the latest and greatest rabbit hole of research about all of the Sam’s out there in the world, and more importantly what exactly is it that makes one a Sam?

The first and most obvious one to me is of course Alfred. I mean depending on shows you’ve watched or comics you’ve read Alfred is a bad ass mother f’n dude who happens to be a butler. I could totally be good with being Alfred if I have to grow up, but I’d need some martial arts training or something. More than a butler obviously, I think he’s one of the few who can and does call the Bats out on his shit. Yes, we all need that. Luke of course has R2 who saves his ass on more than one occasion, and I swear some of his beeps and boops are telling Luke he’s an idiot. Harry Potter has Neville. The Doctor has their Tardis, and almost always a companion.

I dig and dig in my mind archives of nerdyness and finally ask the FB world for more examples of Sam’s out there in the world, knowing that the idea of a Sam has the gut wrenching visceral reaction for all of us. There are examples that I had never considered. So what is it that makes one qualify for the greatness of having a Sam? More importantly to me is that all of my favorite hero characters, all of them have a Sam. The one who calls you out on your shit, while helping you through it. The one who just knew you were going to need that thingy and put it in your pocket. The one who reminds you that you don’t have to be perfect, because to them you already are.

So this rabbit hole Monkey obsession continues, has been for a long while now. Just rattling around like pinball, yes this one is more than a soft little bubble thought. I rabbit holed even further and came to a conclusion, a theory I suppose as it hasn’t been officially tested by the world of FB and social media trolls who want to tell me how wrong I am. Here is the deal. I can’t find a single example of a Villain who has a real Sam. I say real because I of course think of Harley and Joker, but I don’t think it is quite the same thing. The Joker would never say thank you, to start. I can’t help but wonder that maybe, just maybe there would be a hell of a lot less villains in the world if somewhere along the line they had a Sam. If someone just said, hey now I got you. It’s going to be ok.

Only a hero gets a Sam, especially the unlikely hero. Only the character willing to do the hard thing, the right thing, the compassionate thing gets that honor. Doing the thing that makes the world better makes you eligible for a Sam when you really need it most. I believe wholeheartedly that there are tons of Sams out there, they just need a hero to step up. The world needs us to get out there and save it, find our cause and fight for it. Once we start down that path, when we decide to go the extra mile, I’m pretty damned sure the Sams of the world are ready to carry all of us.

If you want a Sam, figure out what it is you can do to make the world better and start f’n doing it.

If you don’t think that you can make the world a better place, I’m telling you that you are wrong. I’m pretty sure you do and you don’t even know it. When you are the adult that kid you needed. That time you were the kid an adult needed to remind them of their dreams. When you called someone out on their bullshit, and pointed out a different path. Helped someone rest, when they pushed to hard. When you tell people you love them, and all of the times you’ve told people you believe in them. Check it out, you made the world a better place. Thank you.

Yes, we all need a Sam at some point in our lives. But the truth is, I decided, is that in some way and in some moments, we are Sam. Every time we samyep making up a new word, we make the world just that much more awesome. We are preventing villains and supporting the unlikely heroes of our lives. That’s the whole point of being here right?

I’ll be here routing for all the Sams out there in the world and in mine with tears in my eyes because kick ass kindness makes me happy cry, and that’s a good thing. Besides, I’m pretty sure now that being Sam is how we earn the right to have a Sam of our own… and we all need a Sam.

Learning to live unafraid.

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