Serendipity: Luck that takes the form of finding pleasant or valuable things that are not looked for.
In the mid-18th century, Sir Horace Walpole stumbled upon a Persian fairy tale called The Three Princes of Serendip (Serendip was the name of the island that is now Sri Lanka). The heroes of the stories traveled about, making happy (and chance) discoveries. Walpole added the word to the English language in 1754
The show turned out to be more than a bit cheesetastic. And full of anachronisms. Still, Robin Hood the show had its charms. I particularly liked the characters of Allan and Much and the young actress playing Marian. All talented and entertaining actors. And then–slowly–I began to pay more attention to one specific character. And it wasn’t Ye Olde Legende Hero.
Sir Guy as played by Richard Armitage might be a right smarmy bastard, but he certainly was a good-looking right smarmy bastard who also turned out to be more complicated than he first appeared on the surface. And by the time he got left at the altar by the woman he believed would cleanse his soul with her goodness and purity, I felt something funny going on inside me. This character was getting to me. It was as if I could see inside his heart; I could see the “evil henchman’s” humanity, his vulnerabilities.
That Richard Armitage fellow was a very good actor. And not bad to look at. He had–presence. Charisma. He had–IT. I wondered what else he might have done. And so I started searching on the Internet, and found various forums, blogs and websites and the fanvids on YouTube, and started reading fanfiction. And so it began . . . the fascination, the obsession, the addiction, whatever you will call it.
Leading to a tall stack of DVDs featuring Mr. A’s performances. Leading to writing fanfiction and making fanvids and now, blogging about him. And all because I sat down one night to watch a show in BBC America. And I just keep discovering more things to like, admire, respect and adore about him. He is a most pleasant and valuable thing to discover when you aren’t even looking for him.
Thank you, Sir Horace, for introducing “serendipity” to the language, and thank you, Richard Armitage, for being a shining example of it.