Josh and I were recently asked to ride in a town holiday parade. This did not surprise us. Having grown up in small towns, both of us are well aware of the wonderful randomness of these parades (a mix of school bands, veterans, fire engines, dance troops and classic cars). We were, however, surprised (and a bit embarrassed) when the parade’s organizer asked if we would stick around afterwards to sign autographs.
Even though lots of people follow us on this website and get a glimpse of our lives on The Fabulous Beekman Boys, we don’t really consider our signature to be worth anything unless it happens to be on the bottom of a check.
But apparently it does.
By the time we arrived at the local fairgrounds (home of the Sunshine Fair and the Maple Queen), a line had started to form around the small folding table that had been set up for the purpose of the “meet and greet”.
Of all the engaging people we met that day, the one that stuck with us the most was a young boy who shyly approached with a folded piece of paper in his hand.
“Go ahead”, his mother encouraged.
Still hesitating, his mom gently took the paper from his hands and gave it to us. It unfolded to reveal a poster on which was written in simple print
Brent and Josh make farming fabulous.
Cut-out photos of pigs, goats and llamas framed the message.
“He had to write it 4 times,” his mom said. “He kept writing too big.”
It was true. On the back of the poster was evidence of his earlier attempts (a closet perfectionist!)
He smiled for a photo, but otherwise could not muster a word. And then left his place in line as the next person stepped forward.
In this day and age where virtually anyone can be a “celebrity”, what role does celebrity actually play?
Sometimes role models, sometimes cautionary tales, and sometimes, in the best of circumstances, the affirmation that life is full of possibility, and realized dreams, and even in small town America (especially so!), there are opportunities to come across something…fabulous.
If this is the value of a signature, then we will sign our lives away.