Delusions of Grandeur

Whenever I watch a Jason Statham movie I’m convinced that yes, I could do that. With a 12 round .45 caliber pistol I could take out 17 men staggering under the weight of fully loaded machine guns and body armor. I could rappel off skyscrapers and acrobatically defeat armies of bad guys. I could fly helicopters. I could withstand very close explosions.

I see myself behind the wheel of all black, new model BMWs, Audis, or Mercedez coupes wearing sleek, black framed sunglasses with chromatically tapered lenses. I imagine the karate fights I’d win with chains and screwdrivers and other improvised weapons. I can feel the air, pushed roughly aside by the solid leaden wall of a few hundred thousand screaming rounds, wash across me as every one of those bullets miss.

I think about the gritty, bitter, assassin-deadly scowl I’d wear. I wonder if I could live my life as an ascetic killer-for-hire or bodyguard-killer-for-hire or mercenary-bodyguard-specialist-for-hire, existing in a state of perpetual, permanent, preparedness. Always one step ahead of everyone else – my competitors, my enemies, my frenemies, maybe even time itself.

But then the movie ends suddenly after a helicopter crash or a missile launch or some other large explosion laden finale; piles of dead bad guys, smoking ruins of houses and cars and landscape all around, and everything is fine. As if by killing the ringleader or traitor or whatever, the massive destruction wrought upon whole swathes of cities and innocents is fine, not one single consequence for whichever character is being played by Mr. Statham and I wonder: what the hell did I just watch.

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