Originally published on bigbaddie.com on November 13, 2018.
Today, I woke up in a world without Stan Lee. As a fan of his co-creations, his movie cameos, and his enthusiasm for comic books and life in general, I am devastated. I feel like I was punched in the gut… by Galactus.
He was many things to many people. He was a hero. He was a creative juggernaut. He was an inspiration to imagine anything and everything. To me, he was a teacher above everything else.
He was my weird professor who talked to me through TV screens about superheroes, the cosmos, and space gods. He was my life coach who spoke to me through his Stan’s Soapbox column using strange words that I’ve never heard before.
He taught me everything I know about acceptance of others through uncanny teenagers and acceptance of self through a green rage monster.
He taught me that anyone can be extraordinary. There is no room for bigotry in this world. Monsters are people too. Even the most ordinary teenager could take on great power and great responsibility. We are all special. Any man can make a difference.
He taught me to always aim higher. Onward and upward. Excelsior!
He taught me how to have fun with my imagination. You have no idea how many times this has saved me during my darkest of days. It still does.
Thank you for all the life lessons, Stan. You will always do a cameo in our collective heart.