I should preface this story by stating that while I do love my brother very much, he is extremely confident (some might say he's outright "cocky"), and he carries himself with an air of accomplishment that most people hedge with at least a degree of modesty. As such, I earnestly believe that this rather humbling experience was just what he needed to add a modicum of humility to his otherwise grandiose character.
That said, here's what happened. Back in the late 1990's, my brother called me to tell me that he had been selected to preform in the pre-game show at one of our city's indoor football games. As a skilled and confident rock climber, he was thrilled when they told him that his role would be to repel (about 300 feet) from the center of the auditorium, dressed as Batman, with the theme song to (the recently released) movie Batman playing in the background. After reaching the floor, he would then make rounds to sign autographs for the hundreds of children that would be in attendance.
Well, things didn't go quite as well as expected. Despite his preparatory efforts to secure an unfettered line from which to repel, somehow, about halfway down the rope, he encountered an enormous knot. I (like the other countless attendees) assumed that he would quickly loosen the impediment and finagle his way down. But by the time the song had ended, it appeared that his efforts were failing.
Amusingly, however, the pre-show coordinators didn't seem to view the stranded man in the Batman costume, hanging in the middle of the forum (about 50 feet from the ground), as any reason to delay the festivities - and they promptly gave the green light to begin the fireworks show.
So there hung my poor brother, in the middle of the auditorium, amongst thousands of wildly cheering on-lookers, having to dodge mortars and various other fireworks exploding above and below him. Then, to add insult to injury, when the fireworks ended, on went the lights, and out came the cheerleaders, with my brother still dangling glaringly above then. Next came the football pla
Well, I guess the intense humiliation was enough to boost his resolve to figure out a way to unleash himself, and just before the game started, he finally, humbly lowered himself (damaged ego and all) to the field - from which he promptly exited.
Oh, and no, he didn't stick around for the autographs...