Some men like to walk through life and go it alone.  It works well for them.  They’re modern day gladiators who prefer the sound of two footsteps wherever they go.

Others prefer a sidekick.  What is a sidekick?  It’s is a close companion who is generally regarded as subordinate to the one he accompanies.

If you’re one who prefers good conversation, a sidekick might fill the bill but are you sure you don’t just need a friend?  Sidekicks are generally reserved for purposes beyond friendship and common dialogue.  Their primary purpose is to serve a supporting need in your life.

A sidekick should never be larger in stature than the main character and that’s you.  If you’re seeking out a sidekick to help you get a girl, be sure your sidekick is less than aesthetically pleasing and short on being opinionated.  There’s nothing more embarrassing that finding out too late that your Juliet has fallen for your sidekick.  As luck would have it though, most sidekicks are naturally short on personality.

A sidekick is also beneficial if you’re looking to be a superhero with long term plans to save mankind.

A History of Sidekicks

Let’s look at some popular sidekicks in history and break down just what exactly makes a good sidekick.

Batman and Robin

Batman and RobinBatman needed Robin because Batman was always so busy fighting crime that he needed to split his crime-fighting responsibilities to accomplish a specific goal.  Robin was his pal but without the usefulness that Robin provided, Batman would have likely relegated Robin to living out life as a hapless teen in tights, dancing on Broadway to pay his monthly mortgage.  Batman wasn’t nearly so skilled a superhero as Superman, so he needed a little help.

Batman consistently corrected Robin and would often “dumb down” the conversation to more easily explain a situation to Robin.  What Robin was good at was following directions.  There was clearly never a risk of Robin stealing the spotlight from Batman.

The Lone Ranger and Tonto.

the lone rangerThis crime fighting duo fought American injustice on the frontier of the Old West.  It took little time for “ke-mo sah-bee” to realize the benefit of traveling the wild frontier with a native speaking Indian.

On more than one occasion, Tonto saved the Lone Ranger’s life.  Tonto became a necessity that allowed the pretentious prarie roaming prick to achieve his ultimate goal of being a bad-ass gunman who was feared and respected by bad guys everywhere.

The Lone Ranger was likely delighted in having a “yes man” Indian like Tonto join his personal crusade.  Not only did Tonto listen well; he could build a fire quicker than any white man and he didn’t talk much.  Bonus.

BJ and the Bear
BJ and the BearBear was a chimpanzee but he was a hell of a good sidekick.

BJ wasn’t the kind of guy that stayed in one place long and he had a long history of womanizing.  He was a “love em’ and leave em'” kind of guy.  As one of prime time television’s first metro men, he displayed rock solid confidence in everything he but consistently longed for the companionship and adoration of another.  Where random women couldn’t fill the void, his monkey did.

As a migrant truck-driver who never had any real plans that stretched beyond his next stop, BJ probably had limited sidekick options anyway but the chimp suited him perfectly.

Bear was just smart enough to help BJ get out of some hairy situations (he was constantly pursued by the half-witted Sheriff Lobo)  and just cute enough to attract the occasional female.  At worst, he was probably a nuisance in blowing that damn horn with every car passed, but BJ learned the power of a good trade-off and a new sidekick was born.

Are You Ready For a Sidekick?

Choosing your sidekick is a decision that should not be rushed or taken lightly.  Sidekicks usually remain partners for extended periods of time.  With a lot of time spent together comes the potential for being heavily annoyed by someone less your superior.  There’s a definite give and take in having a sidekick.

It’s not just finding a compatible personality partner either.  Your choice of sidekick must be equally based on your situational needs.

If you’re finding yourself in need of a sidekick and nearing the commitment, here’s a step by step guide on how to choose a sidekick:

Step 1

Decide on the usefulness of your sidekick and narrow down gender/mammal related decisions.  Answer the following question:  What is the greatest purpose you could be served by having a sidekick?

Step 2

Consider the personality you’re looking for.  Look for a friendly personality that follows directions well.  Sidekicks of today are generally organized individuals who are a bit uncomfortable in their own skin.  They try to accommodate by being overly-friendly and sometimes come off as outright goofy.

Look for an individual who is seeking out a greater purpose.  Sidekicks are helpers by nature and looking to do something worthy with their lives.  They look to others for this guidance.  You’ll have to deal with the occasional low-level frustration in helping your sidekick along.

Step 3

Start your search.  Check out low income housing units and look for book smart people that have been searching for a way to break out the hood but can’t really afford college.

Charismatic individuals are bad choices.  You want a follower, not a leader.

Step 4

Slowly break your chosen sidekick in. Be demeaning, yet kind.  Let your sidekick know that you’re the decision maker.  Make sure there’s no questioning your authority.  If you sense resistance, it might be a signal to keep searching.

The Search is Over

After finding your sidekick, you’re now ready to make change.  Use your sidekick for good and seek to create positive change in the world.  You now have the ability to be in two places at once and an companion will always have your back.

Having a sidekick isn’t for everyone.  The selection process alone can be brutal.  But for those who are ready to take it to the next level, a sidekick can turn an ordinary man into a superhero.

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