Thursday, October 02, 2008


One of the most ingenious though infantile (ingenuous?) American invention is the caped and/or masked super hero. I think they haven't received enough kudos for it. Equally ingenious is the way they've abbreviated "building superintendent" to "super". This factotum is in charge of the smooth running of the facilities (water, power, electricity, waste disposal, elevators, washing machines) in a building and, in turn, for the comfort and well being of the residents. He often resides in the basement to be within easy call 24/7 and has with him all the tools and implements he may need to accomplish his various tasks. Many of the more popular super heroes too, coincidentally, reside underground and emerge to the surface to answer the call of duty. (Remember Batman answering the Bat-signal's summons and speeding to the rescue from the Bat Cave in his Batmobile?) To equate "super" with "saviour" reminds me of Vishnu, the Preserver/Saviour, in his functionally appropriate avatara coming to the rescue of his devotees (acolytes, fans?) and delivering them from the clutches of the evildoers. In the US of A, the house where Superman was "created" was recently saved for restoration thanks to the fans' generosity. They do believe in and love "Super", don't they?