People go through a lot of very perilous things in their life. There are men dedicating their lives and limbs in special missions and during occasions calling for their heroism. There are some people who go through the same dangerous adventure on a daily basis – braving death and staring at it as if it is a mere day by day work hazard. There are people who eventually find themselves unfit for this dangerous calling and there are those who are forced out of the running – found deficient on a quality it takes to belong in the fraternity of the daring. Those, however, who continue chasing the known boundaries and breaking through them are those who are known as the men who possess “the right stuff”.
There are men who, in the face of great adversity, unfortunately show their lack of “the right stuff”. They are forced against a wall and reveal that they are short of it. The “right stuff” is what separates the men from the boys. It is the daring, brilliant, rash, brute, solid and fantastic quality pushing men to push their limits and come out of every seemingly deathly situation unscathed to repeat the adventure again and again.
The “right stuff” is not something you see very commonly in every man. It is an intangible and immeasurable element which drives and prevails in them. A man with “the right stuff” is not confined with the simple restrictions of physical pain, uncertainty and, in some cases, gravity.
It is not an outright indication of being “superhuman” but it is certainly not a quality found in the “regular man”. The men of “the right stuff” talk about it so solemnly knowing fully its value and rarity. They welcome those who demonstrate the possession of “the right stuff” into their fraternity and speak apologetically and sometimes disappointedly of those who exhibit the lack of it.
Men who possess “the right stuff” are not boisterous and loud about it. They do not parade it nor wear it on their sleeves; and they certainly do not speak of it in any manner that makes it lose its quality. The “right stuff” is not to be taken lightly and discussed so irreverently.
It is mostly the single unifying quality residing in the person of men like Chuck Yeager – the human definition of “the right stuff”.
Chuck Yeager illustrates the embodiment of “the right stuff” as regularly as if it’s like clockwork. He never falters in his exhibition of his bravery and casualness in the face of real and great adversities. There are several perilous instances that may have been seemingly insurmountable for a lot of men but Yeager remains collected and unfailingly precise in his calculations.
Chuck Yeager is the first man to break the speed of sound tearing it up nonchalantly and accurately. He does with the quintessence of “the right stuff” – he does it as if it is the most natural thing for him to do. Chuck Yeager is a man at the top of his game – at the top of the coveted pyramid. Chuck Yeager epitomizes “the right stuff”.
Men like Yeager know bounds but are not afraid to face and break it. They recognize a target and aim almost relentlessly to conquer it. The “right stuff” is the making of the true adventurer. It is his id and ego and the secret code in his quest to go supersonic in life.
Wolfe, Tom. The Right Stuff. New York: Bantam Books Inc, 1980.