Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Heroes in a Half Shell

Remember the show Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? Or the movies? Or games? Or toys? Of course you do, it was huge! You couldn't go anywhere in the '90s without seeing a backpack or t-shirt or something with those lovable turtles on them. TMNT was definitely one of my favorite shows growing up. Awesome movies, too. It was always the same: Raphael would lead the team, but something wouldn't work out well, which would upset Leonardo, being the hot head that he is, and he would strike out on his own. Eventually, through the efforts of  Donatello, the more intelligent of the group, the problems would be resolved, and the team would once again work together and accomplish their goal. All of this would of course go on while Michelangelo road skateboards, ate pizza, and said things like "radical!" or "cowabunga!"
The group, as we all know, started off as just ordinary turtles, before wandering into some radioactive ooze in the sewers (naturally). This radioactive ooze then cause them to mutate into giant, humanoid turtles that could walk on two legs, talk, crack jokes, and apparently even had opposable thumbs allowing them to hold weapons (though only 2 other fingers). After this, they were adopted by Splinter, a wise, sage-like rat who had also become overly sized due to the radioactive ooze. He was a martial arts expert, learning his art from his original owner, Hamato Yoshi, by mimicking his moves while he practiced (again, naturally). Splinter, now capable of speech and being quite hyper intelligent (especially for a rat), taught the turtles all he knew about martial arts. They became very proficient, and lived in the coolest bachelor pad you could want, made even cooler by the fact that it was all located in the sewers of New York City. The logical next step would be to become vigilante super heroes. Of course. This they did, and defended the people of New York from the evil villainy of Shredder and his soldiers, the Foot Clan.
As we start out our life, we are just small children. We can't walk, talk, or even feed ourselves. We're helpless little baby turtles. But, as we grow, we learn new things, we progress in our life. Eventually, there comes a time when we all need to make some very profound decisions, and grow up. We all must choose to find out if the Gospel is true (whether you'd been raised in it or not). We must all step into that radioactive ooze. When we do so, we grow. We become (in a very metaphorical sense) giant, walking, talking, fighting, skateboarding, pizza eating, crime stopping turtle ninjas. We become better; we have a focus and drive; we have determination; we know who we are, where we came from, why we're here, what we're doing, and where we're going. All we have to do is step into that ooze (it's really a lot better than it sounds).

Note: Shredder, Splinter and the turtles' archenemy, is just a regular guy, albeit a martial arts expert, donning some sweet armor. No radioactive ooze in his origin!

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