Had this thought last night as I lay falling asleep. We have all these space-exploration-ensemble shows with a bunch of aliens each of which has some sort of super-human power, more or less. And humans are always given ~leadership~ as their special power. The ability to bring people together, to organize shit, and I always thought, like…what a shitty power. What a shitty colonial “you were a mess until we came in and saved you” power. Drives me nuts. Seems like if an alien species builds a got-damn ship that can fly through got-damn space they probably have their shit together, right? At least somewhat?
So then I figure, what is humanity got to contribute to all these super-beings? We’re just nonsense reckless critters careening through space. Seems like we’d be more trouble than we’re worth.
But what if…I mean, what if that’s us. We’re the universe’s huckleberries. We’ll run headlong into danger, and we’ll *laugh*. And what if…what if we survive and a weirdly abnormally high rate. Like any alien with two bits of math can put together that we should have wiped ourselves out a long time ago with the first set of “hold my beer, and watch this.” So what the shit, how are we still banging around the universe building shit and flying off solar ramps into the sun while doing some spaceship equivalent of an ollie while crushing beer cans on our forehead. Why. Why do we exist.
And then it hits me. We survive. We’re super good at it. Uncannily good at it. So much so that we…I mean, we actually bend probability in our favor. It’s absurd. And it totally falls flat if you actually tell us this (“Never tell me the odds,” said Solo, knowing full well that knowing the odds kills a human’s chances of survival).
So there we are. Careening around the universe. Joining alien crews because they know that with a human on board, especially a cocky human in some kind of leadership position, can warp probability to stretch success in their favor. And they can never ever tell us this. So instead they just pat our heads and tell us we’re just so good at ~leadership~ and that’s what makes humans special