Who is your hero?

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 30, 2000

In the 39 years that I have had the pleasure of walking this earth, I have had several heroes.

I guess if you really think about it, heroes change from one minute to the next.

Growing up in the beginnings of the television age, I was exposed to role models in a different genre than my father was. He had radio.

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Although I am frequently reminded of a certain particular occurrence in my life from hearing a certain song that was popular at that moment, my heroes mainly emerged off the 21-inch one-eyed-monster, that old black and white TV set.

My first heroes were Batman, and Superman, but I don't know if that was their order or not.

Before I could read, whenever Batman and Robin fought the bad guys, and those "Bam, Bip, Bof, Kapowee's" came up on the screen in time with Batman's punches and Robin's kicks, my mother would tell me what they said.

And of course, I just thought it was swell the way that Superman could emerge from the suit-and-tie garb that Clark Kent wore.

Then if I should happen to hear a fire truck with it's screaming siren soaring down the main drag, well then my father was my hero, because I knew that he was on that fire truck, going to save the day somewhere.

Through my first decade, heroes changed at a lightning-fast pace. There was Curly Joe from the "Three Stooges", Abbott and Costello, Slip Mahoney and Satchmo on "The Bowery Boys", and Gomez Addams on "The Addams Family."

There was Reid and Malloy on "Adam-12", and Agent 86 on "Get Smart".

About that time, something strange happened. With the development of hormones, my heroes now changed genders. Gone were the days of idolizing Catfish Hunter, Tug McGraw, and Tom Seavers.

Instead, there were people like Farrah Fawcett-Majors from "Charlie's Angels," Linda Carter as "Wonder Woman".

Eventually, my interests abandoned the TV, and the radio/8-track tape player replaced it.

That was when the Wilson sisters of "Heart", Pat Benatar with her eight-octave voice and Joan Jett took over (sort of my rebellious, punky era).

At one point in my life, I even idolized the "Brat Pack". And that was when my favorite actress emerged: Demi Moore.

But now, having said all of that reflective-type stuff, back to real-life.

My greatest modern-age hero would have to be my wife, Cindy.No one can juggle a schedule like she can.

She pushes me off of the bed in time for work each morning, as she is getting herself set to go to her job. She makes sure that I have fresh clothes to wear, tends to the needs of all of the kids (myself included), and still takes the time to smile and say, "I love you."

My wife is the one that makes sure that everyone's Christmas gifts are bought and properly wrapped, and that we haven't forgotten anyone.

She drives that taxicab that is disguised as a family-sized vehicle, and rarely asks for a little help (ironically, I believe that she shouldn't have to ask, I just always forget to offer).

Yep, my true hero is my spouse, the one that keeps me walking the straight-and-narrow path that keeps everything in synch.

She redefines the term "working from can til can't" on a daily basis, and I would like to say, now that all of the "Holiday Hooplah" is over, thanks for being there…I love you too.

And so, from way out in "Deep Left Field," I say to you, the readers, "try and stay safe this holiday season, watch out for the other guy, and make this a holiday to remember happily, not as a time of tragedy."