We all know Captain Retrospect. Captain Retrospect is that super-hero in everyone’s life who has the uncanny ability to point out your mistakes and then tell you what they would have done had they been in your shoes. Sometimes we work with Captain Retrospect, sometimes we’re married to him or her and sometimes we’re just friends with Captain Retrospect. Regardless of where we encounter Captain Retrospect, we are always annoyed by him or her.
Captain Retrospect is especially annoying at work as either your co-worker or supervisor. Captain Retrospect especially likes using his or her special powers in public situations, such as a staff meeting or in front of a customer. “Oh…you’re never going to get that done by the deadline. You know what I would’ve done? I would have pre-ordered extra copies of Form 1742G and then forwarded them in anticipation of the deadline. That way you could have completed the inventory long before now.”
I think we all had Captain Retrospect as a childhood friend. As you’re being carried home by Captain Retrospect and another friend, Captain Retrospect, whose powers were evident early in life, usually said something like, “I knew you never should have jumped off that tree. I was just about to tell you there was a fence below you.” We all also had Captain Retrospect as a close friend in college too, didn’t we? “Dude! There is no way I would have done that. I totally knew the cops were going to show up. What were you thinking?” At this point Captain Retrospect is usually lucky we were already in handcuffs.
In a relationship Captain Retrospect is especially dangerous. Captain Retrospect can be either a guy or a girl. “I knew it wouldn’t work. I wanted to try the other thing and now you’re feelings are all hurt. Well it’s not my fault. You should have listened to me.” Or perhaps Captain Retrospect is a friend who offers helpful commentary on your relationships: “You should have dumped him a long time ago. I knew he was a player, but I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want to hurt your feelings. How could you not see the signs?”
Is it any wonder that Captain Retrospect never got invited to join the Superfriends?