Thursday, January 1, 2009


Once, there was this kid who got into an accident and couldn't come to school
But when they finally made him, his hair had turned from black into bright white.
Mmm, mmm, mmm. Mmm, mmm, mmm.

Do you remember this song?

I didn't until my dad was visiting last weekend and he said the name Solomon Grundy.

Wait, I thought. I know that name. Who is that?

And I came up with, "Remember that "Mmm, mmm, mmm' song?"

Except it wasn't that song I was trying to think of. Just the artist, Crash Test Dummies.

The song I wanted was the second song on the single (remember when they used to sell singles? Cassette tape singles for like $1.50 in the store?): "Superman's Song."

It's about how great a guy Superman is, how far superior to Tarzan he is and how he didn't make any money saving the world from Solomon Grundy.

Sometimes, I despair the world will never see another man like him.

That's my favorite line.

I've been listening to the song over the last few days, thanks to iTunes. You can watch the video on You Tube here.

It's crazy that I used iTunes to reconnect with that old song because when I first started to like that tune -- back when I was in eighth grade, I think -- my family didn't even have a computer, much less the Internet. I remember listening to this Crash Test Dummies single in my friend's car as her mom drove us to play in a basketball tournament somewhere far away like Grand Island. I remember always sort of liking the Superman song better. That was rare because usually the second song on a single wasn't even worth listening to.

I also remember listening to Salt 'N' Pepa in that friend's car and singing those songs in the locker room before practice. I'm pretty sure I have that tape in a box downstairs somewhere, too.

But back to superheroes. They're really cool, aren't they?

Rye, who is 3 1/2 now, has been really into Justice League and Spiderman lately. Right now, in fact, we are watching the first Spiderman movie, the one where Tobey Maguire morphs from ultimate geek with a crush on a girl to amazing stud, all thanks to the bite of a spider.

Later, I'm sure, we'll watch another Justice League cartoon. If I could choose my own theme music, that'd be it. And if anyone ever sees bracelets like Wonder Woman's and knows where I can find them, let me know, OK?

In my fantasy world, I am a little more like her: strong, smart, determined, unshakable even in the face of some pretty mean-looking bad guys. She just takes care of them and gets on with business.

I have a sort of friend from college who was working on a documentary for his masters thesis about everyday superheroes -- actual people who think they are superheroes. Many of them were in jail.

And I don't think this friend is ever going to finish the documentary. But I'd like to see it if he ever does.

Who knows? Maybe Superman didn't die with Christopher Reeve. Maybe he is somewhere, quietly fighting the bad guys. Maybe Batman is, too.

And Wonder Woman.

I sort of like that idea.

1 comment:

bryan said...

Rolling Stone just had a story about real-life superheroes in the last issue. It's here.