Snake Plissken is my spirit animal and I let him down constantly. I come up with one liners fifteen minutes too late. I can’t get the same gravelly rumble in my throat, like words riding choppers on a highway paved in brimstone. I don’t smoke. I drive a Mazda. All my shirts have sleeves on them. I have binocular vision. Yet, through all the forsaking, Snake Plissken, and the rest of The Pantheon of Testicular Fortitude, is there for me.
I am sure many readers have heard of most of them. After all, members of the pantheon are icons in ass kicking and public relations. Here are a few of the registered members. The old guard: Manko, Conan, Dutch, Rambo. The Pantheon of Testicular Fortitude isn’t just a boys club: China O’Brien, Buffy, and newcomer Furiosa are there too. John McClean demonstrates how to practically apply the pantheon’s teachings. And “You’re Goddamn Right!” Bernardo O’Reilly is there, to teach us how to gracefully accept when the dusty trail of life is at an end.
Seemingly, no villain can best them in hand to hand, fully armed or vehicular combat. The lucky few scumbags who have landed a direct hit didn’t live long enough to live tweet about it. No matter how serious the wound, it is nothing members of the pantheon can’t patch up with a bottle of alcohol and a hot blade. Most of them just can’t die, which is why many in the pantheon smoke.
As for the pantheon’s name itself, testicular fortitude is a misnomer. It exists somewhere between concept and state of mind; not anywhere near anyone’s crotchular region. In fact, the smaller and more protected those things are the better. Especially when dealing with nut kicking ninjas. Honestly, if testicles were an AD&D character all their stats would be three except their hit points and armor class which would be one and twelve respectively. Physically, they offer no fortitude and are quite possibly the worst way to accessorize, ever.
At the end of the day, testicular fortitude lives inside us all, in our heads and in our hearts. Regardless of wedding tackle or how one identifies. How much of it there is varies from person to person. How much one decides to use is up to that person. Tactics and methods may also vary.
For fun: Re-read the third paragraph, but at the end of each sentence add, “except Bernardo O’Reilly.”