Although my nephew (who wore a red cape nearly every day for a year) used to suspect I was hiding a red and blue leotard under my clothes. It all added up to him: I was tall, had dark curly hair and worked for a newspaper, just like Clark Kent.
But let it be known, the similarities stop there. And that all became very evident while cleaning out the gutters the other day.
Since I do in fact lack the ability to fly, I used a rickety four-foot aluminum ladder to climb onto the roof of my house. Standing on the top step (yes, I know there’s a warning against that) I pulled myself up to get to a section of gutters overhanging the garage.
After a few minutes of pulling muck out of the gutters, it was time to get down, and that’s when it hit me: The ladder was too far down for my foot to reach.
I was stranded eight feet from the ground.
I had two choices: I could take a blind leap of faith and hope my foot hit the top step or I could signal my wife who was inside the house.
I decided on the latter.
Our dog was lying outside in the sun, so I tried to get her to signal my wife.
“Go get mommy,” I called to her. “Go on.”
She perked up, turned her head sideways quizzically and slumped back down.
And that’s when I was hit by another realization: My dog is not Lassie. But honestly, I knew that one already.
I found some pebbles on the roof and tossed them at a first-floor window hoping my wife would hear them. She didn’t.
I needed something more substantial, so I took off my shoe and threw it at the window. The loud thud echoed through the house, and my rescuer popped her head outside.
She grabbed my feet – a shoe on one and a white sock on the other – and guided them toward the ladder as I eased myself down.
It was humbling.
I – a college graduate, a published writer, a newspaper editor – had gotten stuck on a roof. You won’t find me wearing a red cape anytime soon.
About the Author (Author Profile)
Jacob Glassner, News Editor/Plate Spinner
Jacob usually has his eyes glued to a computer screen, editing stories and making sure the paper gets out the door each week. Multi-tasking is his modus operandi – similar to the plate spinners you’d see on the old “Ed Sullivan Show.” Turn ons: freshly-sharpened pencils. Turn offs: exclamation points!!!