My big brother is a huge influence. Ben helped shape my interests from the moment my parents brought me home. My baby book is proof. My first word was Batman.
The story goes that my brother, who at the age of four was already a bonafide comic book fanatic, was beyond thrilled to welcome a little brother into the world. Although at the rudimentary stages of learning to read, I am told, Ben read to me with ceaseless abandon.
His favorite to relay was, as you can guess, Batman. Ben read what he could and made up the rest to match the colorful printed images in the panels. He shared his excitement for reading and imagination with me before he mastered reading.
He so persistently read to me that when I began to speak, it wasn’t mama or papa or even Ben that I said first. No, it was the dark knight. The man who dressed as a bat at night and was a millionaire playboy by day was my first two syllables. Batman.
Thanks, Ben. I have read hundreds of comic books from childhood until college. And thousands of books within my life. It was this unfettered passion he shared to sparked the same inside me. Now, I read, and I write. I say to you, Batman.