Oliver – You were right to ask if I knew more than I was letting on. I’ve seen men with abilities like that before.
Felicity – You have!? Where?
Oliver – The island. My second year marooned there we…I came across the remains of a Japanese World War II military project. It was a serum designed to create human weapons.
Diggle – Human weapons! My God what’s next, aliens?
Oliver – This is real, Diggle. Those five years I was away I came across things that just defy explanation.
It’s interesting, as a metaphor, to note that the things Oliver tells Felicity and Diggle in this scene seem “ridiculous.” I think a lot of things we run into in life seem ridiculous and far fetched. That’s why other people’s life stories are so interesting…they are all different, fascinating, and full of experiences that we have not had. This can be a good thing because it encourages us to stop and listen to someone else’s story…but at the same time we have to be careful that we do not romanticize what they have been through. Looking at Oliver it is easy to think, “Wow! His experiences are amazing!” but would we actually want to experience them? As they say in Harry Potter…”Stuff like that always sounds cooler than it really was.”
(Check out this essay for more on the subject of Romanticizing Adversity)