Jarrod Fairclough – The world is in chaos. Threats between countries bounce back and forth. Hatred and anger is the default setting for millions of people. This weekend a putrid display of horrible behavior rocked not only the people of Virginia, but the world. And it’s all had me thinking, what can I possibly do to make the world a happier place? Is there someone in the midst of this madness I could look at as a beacon of humanity? Then it hit me. Humanity needs to be like Grover.
While other Sesame Street characters might be better examples of pure love, Grover has one thing going for him that they do not – Grover is at his happiest when he is doing things for other people. Grover doesn’t think of himself first. No, instead Grover looks at his neighbors, his friends, his family, to make sure that before he is content, they are content. Sure, he might not always do it well, but his thought process is always on someone else first, a trait I think all human kind needs to be reminded of right now.
Take his alter ego for example. Super Grover has one objective, and one objective only – helping. He flies through the air, and when he sees someone in need, whether it be a family of birds moving a piano or a kid looking for the bus stop, he lands (well, crash lands) and does everything in his power, no matter how ridiculous or unnecessary, to ensure that that persons needs are met. He will put himself through torture for one reason only – to make sure he is being helpful.
Think about some of the most iconic Grover sketches over the years. What do they all have in common? Grover doing everything he can do ensure that the audience understands what he is trying to tell them. In ‘Near and Far’, he runs back and forth over and over again, not even thinking about his poor tired little body, until he is content that the audience is content with his explanation. In ‘Over, Under, Around and Through’, he gets a workout as he explains the various concepts, again not thinking about himself until the message is clear. Sure, people shouldn’t be putting themselves through agony every day for seemingly trivial reasons, but perhaps some people in the world need a reminder that the willingness to help thy neighbor is something to be admired.
No-one knows Grover’s willingness to help like Mr Johnson. For decades now, Fat Blue has been tormented and tortured by Grover’s urge to assist in any way he can think of. But even he, on occasion, has had to concede that Grover’s tendency to think of other people is beneficial.
The world can be an ugly place. But, as I said on the various Muppet Mindset social media accounts on Saturday; You are cute. You are adorable. You have the ability to be super. Remember to love everyone. Remember to help everyone. Be a team player. Be a shining light in a darkening world. Be like Grover.