devolving identity

God: Sum id quod sum.
Descartes: Cogito ergo sum.
Popeye: Sum id quod sum et id totum est quod sum.
Eminem: Et sum id quod legis esse me, si non, cur legam esse.

And the acme of self-assertion:

I yam Popeye
The sailor man.
    I yam what I yam
    ’Cause tha’s what I yam.
I yam Popeye
The sailor man.

I yam Popeye
The sailor man.
    Never more will I roam,
    Fer I feels right to home.
I yam Popeye
The sailor man.

I yam Popeye
The sailor man.
    I yam jus’ a little feller,
    But I hasn’t any yeller.
I yam Popeye
The sailor man.

I yam Popeye
The sailor man.
    I have said I hates strife,
    But I’ll fight fer me life.
I yam Popeye
The sailor man.

I yam Popeye
The sailor man.
    When spinach I eat
    I kin not be beat.
I yam Popeye
The sailor man.

I yam Popeye
The sailor man.
    I fights fer the right
    With all of me might.
I yam Popeye
The sailor man.

I yam Popeye
The sailor man.
    I yam strong as the breezes
    Which blows down big treeses.
I yam Popeye
The sailor man.

I yam Popeye
The sailor man.
    I yam strong at the finitch
    ’Cause I eats me spinitch.
I yam Popeye
The sailor man.

— As reproduced by Benjamin Albert Botkin in The American People: Stories, Legends, Tales, Traditions and Songs, Transaction Publishers, 1997, pp. 89-90.

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