Oh, Monday. What a killjoy you are. Almost as much as killjoy as rocks in my shoes after a trip to the beach. Or the strawberry and vanilla parts in Neopolitan ice cream. Or a roommate walking in and interrupting your hookup…sigh.
But at least we have Man Crush Monday! Man Crush Monday is kind of like Paris…we will always have it!
I am a sucker for knights in shining armor. They make me melt, for some reason. I may be a self-proclaimed feminist, but I still love the idea of a hero who is willing to risk everything for what matters to him. The best of the good guys, in my book.
Stephen King has the ability to write some really awesome bad guys (Eldred Jonas, Jim Rennie, etc). But King also has the ability to write some memorable good guys. And we are talking about good guys, not anti heroes who still do good (sorry, Roland!)
Ralph Roberts is the consummate knight in shining armor. When I was growing up, my grandfather was my knight in shining armor. It seemed he always knew what to do and what to say, even when things were difficult. And he was willing to do anything for his family. I know that he made sacrifices for my mom, my uncle and grandmother back in the day so that they all could have happy, healthy lives. He also fought in World War II and risked his life for his country, even though it may have meant that he would either return in a body bag or return with severe injuries (thankfully, he returned healthy…otherwise, you might not be reading this blog!) In other words, in the words of a certain famous singer, he walked on water.
Ralph Roberts also walked on water. To me, this guy could never do any wrong. He was not a willing participant, at least at first, in the quest set up for him by whatever forces control our universe. Like Frodo, Sam, Bilbo and the other hobbits, he just wanted to stay home and live out the last of his days in peace (when you are 68 years old, you have earned that right). But fate had other plans for him. And Ralph stepped up, and he did it admirably. He saved the life of a certain young man who would later go to play his part in the quest of a well known anti hero. He also saved the lives of a few hundred people from a madman while he was at it. And rubbed elbows with Connie Chung, too.
However, these accomplishments came at a major cost. Ralph held up his end of the bargain, but also forced The Fates (Clotho and Lachesis) to uphold their end of the bargain. Ralph was unwilling to work with the Fates until they promised him that the life of the daughter of his young neighbor would also be saved. And this required Ralph to sacrifice himself when the time came. And Ralph does exactly that. In other words, the best of the good guys. My grandfather would have admired him, in fact.
So without further ado, here is Ralph Roberts!
Name; Ralph Roberts
Profession: Retired, but was a traveling salesman. His persuasion abilities come in handy when he really wants something, like to trade his life for the life of a child.
Relationship status: Widowed from Caroline. He later falls in love with and marries Lois Chasse, but Caroline’s voice is still a major influence, often guiding him through difficult decisions.
So it’s only a little bit complicated…
Known associates: Obviously, Caroline Roberts, and later Lois Chasse. He values the opinions of everyone, especially women.
Dorrance Marstellar. Old Dor was almost a major influence on his quest as the voice of his deceased wife Caroline. Short Timers can be a little dense, and Old Dor tries to be as understanding as possible when offering his somewhat cryptic guidance.
Helen Deepeneau. Ralph rescued her from her abusive husband, and went up against the asshole when no one else would. Later, he sacrificed himself so that the life of her daughter may be spared. His actions against Ed Deepenau even earned him accolades from feminist groups…talk about a true knight!
Enemies: The Knights of the Round Table had them, and Ralph Roberts definitely has them. It comes with the the territory when you are a bad ass.
Ed Deepenau. When you have no destiny, you are almost as formidable as the Crimson King (see above). And when a certain dirty, bald doctor cuts your “balloon string” (essentially, your spiritual lifeline) off, then watch out! This does not make you happy when your elderly neighbor interferes with your plans, whether those plans are to beat your wife senseless, or to blow up a civic center that is holding a pro choice rally (well placed irony is always the best).
So there you have it, ladies…Ralph Roberts! One of the last of the true knights…he has even been compared to the famous Sir Lancelot! Ralph Roberts is definitely a keeper…I can understand why someone may lose sleep over him!
So enjoy this week’s Man Crush Monday, and tune in next week to swoon over more literary characters that you wish were real!