No More Heroes
Dick Jones on Patteran Pages examines the changing role of the hero in our lives:
I don’t think I’ve ever had any actual heroes. However, when I was 5 or 6 Winston Churchill’s name still struck gold: we kids in playground & street accepted as an article of faith that he was the warrior-god who had delivered us from the Nazi hordes. And the day after my parents took me to see the film Hans Christian Andersen, Danny Kaye sat himself down at a neighbouring table in our favourite Italian restaurant & I got his autograph. For a while, I remember, I felt blessed & touched by greatness. Then there was the time when the Queen smiled at me from her passing car as I struggled at the front of the roadside crowd with the family dog in my arms. For a week or two I speculated about the possibility of a call to the palace so that she might get a closer look.
But somehow, over the years, neither rock-and-roll nor film nor football yielded up the gilded hero for me. Somehow it was always apparent that, however pronounced the talent, the pretender still sat on lavatories, bathed naked & had difficulty with simple sums.