Though i was quite the model student throughout my elementary school years, i thoroughly enjoyed my occasional illnesses, getting to stay home from school, because it gave me the chance to stay up on Richie Rich. My good mother would provide me with the latest release of “the poor little rich man’s” comic.
WOW! i remember so clearly, as if it were just yesterday, how i dreamed of sharing his wealth, if only for my own fantasy of having a ’63 Corvette in 30 colors, one for each day of the month. Before i obeyed good mom and took my many naps (to prove my absentee was legit), i shut my eyes and imagined the sight, hoping that in my dreams i’d be driving them about.
Fantastical as it all was, who knows – MORE IMPORTANTLY – just how much i was learning from Richie on page after page about the True Value of Wealth, as the main point of every comic book, of every adventure, was Who Is Richie Going to Help Today? Altruism being the boy’s clearest quality, his escapades were to find anyone less fortunate and lift them up. Richie was probably my teacher more than any nun or priest at Saint Helena’s, and he was certainly precursor to my encounters with Francis of Assisi, who sealed the knowledge in me of the real value of money, namely, that it is truly precious to the extent that it is shared.
In recent times, after decades of my own adventures, i have come to know the Real Richie Rich, who shared my passion for sports cars. He was never the owner of any fancy cars, but a master mechanic was he on any kind. There he eked out a humble living and found a worthy pride, fine jewels, though nothing whatsoever in the way of luxury. With nothing materially to cushion his fall, when the body began to give out on him, according to one half of the comic book’s standard, this Mr. Rich had never made it big! But, according to what little Richie REALLY knew in his heart, this guy is one of the best and one of the richest men on earth! Ever the good and honest man, knowing how much each guy cherishes his automobile, Rich was one of the “good guys,” one you could also trust with your “baby.” That’s what he wanted most, to be recognized as true.
In one of the greatest Epics of them all, the oldest English poem, Beowulf, perhaps the greatest treasure that is found throughout the whole long adventure is called by the poet “the Shoulder-Companion,” that one who will stick by you like glue, no matter what comes your way. Most people will be fortunate if they find one such person in life. My Rich Richie has two shoulders – and the incomparable fortune of having two such comrades, Geraldine, his wife of thirty years, until she died of cancer. Geraldine’s best friend, Maggie, not long after took the other shoulder and the other half of Richie’s soul. What more could a man want? How much richer could one man be? Add a dog, and it’s perfect ecstasy!!!
When i am around my buddy, Richie Rich, and i see the twinkle in his eyes, i know how rich i am to call him my friend. A Treasure i would take any day over a whole rainbow fleet of Vettes. My Richie Rich – and Maggie, too, are Rich in Love with a Love that’s overflowing.
Those eyes actually TWINKLE!