C2010 W. Korol Selley
In defining "show-off", the Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary, 11th Edition lists "show-off" as: (1843) The act of showing off. One that shows off. Exhibitionist.
(to) "show off": (1793) To display proudly, to seek to attract attention by conspicuous behavior.
While it's true that no one likes a "show-off" per se, we shamelessly gravitate toward them. We even pay big bucks to bask in their presence no matter how near or far they are positioned from us. We become awestruck when they are within arm's reach. We lose our ability to speak. We may envy these "show-offs". We may wish we knew them personally, or we may want to be just like them, do what they do with or without them. We might go so far as to imagine being them.
Who are these "show-offs"? Assuredly, they are a cut above the rest. Whatever they choose to do, they do it with finesse, otherwise we wouldn't notice them in the first place.
Take for instance, the actor. They not only must project the glamorous Hollywood look and lifestyle, but they show off that one most important thing that they possess--talent. As they take on a character role, they pretend to be someone they are not and they must work at being convincing. The more complex the role, the harder they must work to show off their ability to perform.
Artists show off their work, vying to win that Best In Show award even though they can't draw a straight line to save their lives. Whether it's abstract or faux real and and anything in between, we marvel at their sense of design, choice of color, subject matter and technical strength. From the Sunday painter to the serious artist, they live to show of their work. Standing by to give them their reward are the collectors and admirers.
Musicians crank up the volume, either screaming or cooing into the mic for attention. They choose their wardrobes as carefully as someone who is going to dinner with the most important person on the face of the earth. They are the envy for their musical ability, sense of style, stage presence and fan base.
We must not forget the sports figures, the football and basketball players, rodeo and horse track reders, Olympic participants, and then there are the architects whose buildings must be the tallest, the widest, the greenist and the most handicap friendly.
Anyone who creates change, stirs the emotional, psychological and academic pots is a show-off in every sense of the word.
Let's not forget our children because they are show-offs at heart. They are at the point in their lives where they learn to be daring and willing to try new things. It's a major detrement to squelch their enthusiasm. It's a good idea to indulge their dreams. As long as we do this, they will stay focused and continue to show off time and again. Show-offs are necessary. They are the brain teasers and entertainers. Life would be boring without them. The more they show off, the more we learn from them.