As a keen Nerd and RPG player, the concept of a NPC is well known to me. That’s why I found so much amusement in the question above.
A NPC is a non player character. A character in a game who is played by the Game Master or Dungeon Master (the narrator of a RPG). They’re an unimportant footnote to a story’s main characters. They turn up, provide information or a barrier to the players, then they disappear. Sometimes they may stick around for longer but the point is that they’re a side show to the main event.
The concept of being a side note in someone else’s tale is pretty horrifying to me. I like to believe that I’m leading my life. I’m not a believer in fate or destiny. I believe in choice. So being a footnote in another person’s history is a life not lived to the full.
‘Are You an NPC in Someone Else’s Story?’ is a lovely little phrase that amusingly wraps up the concept that your life is your responsibility, that your life is your own to lead. It is a great reminder to live!