When I was five I started liking superheroes, not in the reading comic books kind of sense, I actually didn’t pick up a comic book until I was 13. No, at 5 I started liking superheroes because a friend of mine liked superheroes. I could not tell you his name, because I do not remember it for the life of me. My parents could probably tell you, but again, that is beside the point. When I was five I started liking superheroes because a friend of mine liked superheroes and he had a Spider-Man costume.
So you have to be asking yourself, is this blog post about peer pressure and how you shouldn’t give into it?! Not at all, people are going to influence you for your entire life, it’s how the world works. What this blog post is about is simply why I like Spider-Man. I have made some allusions towards Spider-man in previous posts, but haven’t done one just on him.
So why do I like Spider-man? Well Spider-Man was the first superhero I ever liked, but as I got older and started reading comics the web-head grew on me. Peter Parker was 15 when he was bitten by a radioactive spider, giving him the abilities to become Spider-Man. And at 13, I really connected to him. He was like any teenage kid. He had his problems at school, he struggled with girls, and he wasn’t like other superheroes who were rich and/or successful. He was just a kid from Queens.
As I grew older I found that I could still connect with Spider-Man because, like myself, he had experienced the 3 F’s. What are the 3 F’s you ask?! It is something that everyone experience at some point in their life, most experience it in college. The 3 F’s are Fear, Failure, and Falling. There are so many instances in which Spider-Man lived through the fears, failures, and fallings of life. He has found himself disappointed, hurt, and on the ground. He could have given up, told the world he had had enough and stay on the ground as he mended his wounds. But rather, the got back up and told those who wished to strike him down,”I will not disappear into the night, hide from my fears and my advisories.” When his family was threatened, when his friends left his side, when Gwen Stacy died and his marriage with Mary Jane was irradiated, he found himself back on his feet for he could not, would not give up.
When you come to college, even later in life, you will experience the 3 F’s. In high school there were many safety nets to keep you from feeling disappointment, fear, and pain. Some of you may have experienced failing a class, some of you have have had a failed relationship, and some of you may have never failed, never fallen, never feared. You had parents, teachers, advisors, and friends by your side helping you to stay on your feet. But now that you are entering college, many of those safety nets are being taken away, making it more inevitable that you may fear, fail, and fall. You will still have professors, advisors, friends, and family who will support you along the way, but their job is not to keep you on your feet, but help you back up when you need it.
The 3 F’s are not something that we want you to experience to be cruel or humiliate you. The point of failing, fearing, and falling is not there to say “you failed”. The point of the 3 F’s, the reason I bring it up today is not to talk about what happens during the 3 F’s, but what you do after. These moments are what my father would call character building moments. When you fail, when you fear, when you fall, (I say when because they will happen) you have a choice. You can either lay in the dirt and wait for someone to pick you up, or you can get back on your feet and face the next challenge that approaches, while remembering the lessons you learned from the last.
The 3 F’s do not just pertain to classes, but work, relationships, friendships, internships, and more. You may never fail a class in your entire college career, you might fail a test, but college is more than just classes and grades. It is about the things you learn in and outside of the classroom, while also growing as an individual from the successes and failures you insure.