I woke up on my birthday morning this month thinking about the king in chess. It’s the weakest piece, except for the pawns. It can only move one space at a time, save for castling, which can only take place once a game.
Yet the very point of the game is to capture the king. It led to a melisma of thoughts about how we need to protect the most vulnerable among us. Dreams, and exhaustion, will do that to you.
It’s true. Having the title and having the power are two entirely different things.
Then I thought of all the people who have been dubbed the “king of” some aspect of life. “I’m king of the world,” Jack Dawson (Leo DeCaprio) shouts, not long before he dies in the cold Atlantic in the movie Titanic (1997).
“Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown,” said Shakespeare’s Henry IV; he knew that not everyone was impressed by his rule.
And then there’s this:
For those keeping score: Henry IV ascended the throne in 1399 after deposing Richard II.
(Title swiped from the closing credits of Car Talk.)