I feel bad about the fact that in my efforts to raise extraordinary children, I fell short of being a good mom. By this I mean, in my mind costume items were kept in a costume trunk for dressing up at home or going out on Halloween. Otherwise, when we went out I wanted them well-dressed, well put-together. Now, who was I doing that for but for myself and maybe other moms?
Looking back, my daughters must have been turning their heads with awe at the girls who got to wear tutus over their pants if they felt like it, or boys of summer dressed as Spider Man, or all the children who put together the most interesting, outlandish combinations of clothes, themselves, every day. They are probably the most creative people today, including fashion designers. And many of them, I would imagine, live in San Francisco. A city that knows how to celebrate life in costume.
Witness the Batkid event in San Francisco on Friday, November 15th. No matter what one’s week was like, it had to be uplifted by a city that transformed itself into Gotham City, and the thousands of volunteers and onlookers who turned out see one little boy’s wish come true.
Miles Scott, age 5, dreamed of being Batkid. As a child battling cancer, he believed in Batman as only a child can. And Batman licked the cancer as only Batman can. In any case, superheros helped pull him through, and superheros always win. So when Miles’ treatments were finished and the leukemia went into remission, Make-A-Wish Foundation pulled out all the stops to make his wish come true.
By many accounts, the event was more phenomenal to the city than when the Giants won the World Series in 2010.
Miles came to the city with his family under the guise of picking up a Batkid costume. Everyone was in on it but Miles. In the family’s hotel room in the morning, “Breaking News” interrupted television programming with SF Police Chief Greg Suhr calling on Batkid with “We need your help!” Dressed in his new costume, Batkid scurried down to the lobby and, accompanied by an adult Batman, sped off in a black Lamborghini Batmobile—all major roads having been cleared for the event. Throughout the day the two of them sprung into action from one staged event to another: rescuing a damsel in distress tied to cable car tracks on Union Square, thwarting the Riddler’s attempted robbery of a bank vault and seeing him off in a paddy wagon, and onward to AT & T park to rescue Lou Seal, the Giant’s mascot, who had been kidnapped by the Penguin.
One long ambitious day with flash mobs and cheering crowds everywhere. A special edition of the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper read “BATKID SAVES CITY” on the front page. And the day ended with Mayor Ed Lee presenting Miles with the keys to the city. Throughout it all, the five year old boy struck the pose and the poise of the superhero that he truly is.
The story that went around the world. And as one twitter user wrote, “Sometimes humans get it right.”