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What I Learned from Tony Stark’s Trying Character

Tony Stark snaps the gauntlet in Avengers: Endgame.
Marvel Studios/ Avengers: Endgame (2018)

As I was browsing the TV, Spider-Man: Far From Home happen to be playing on FX. I hadn’t watched it since I saw it in theaters back in 2019.

One scene that really hit me was when Peter Parker and Happy Hogan were talking in the ship. Happy mentioned Tony Stark, who has since died since the events of Avengers: Endgame.

“Tony was my best friend, and he was a mess. He second guessed everything he did. He was all over the place…”

-Happy Hogan

That one line about Tony Stark really got me thinking. It caused me to reflect on myself, and my outlook.

We’re All Figuring It Out

It’s easy to look at others and assume that they have it all together. That they just have things figured out, career, relationships, purpose.

I look at those around me, and yeah, I feel a sense of envy. I feel like I should have it all together like they do.

But you know what? Maybe those same people look at me and say the same.

I need to look at myself, and understand that it’s not so bad. I have a lot to be thankful for. I’m figuring things out as I go, in each moment of each day.

And that’s what it is to be human.

That’s what it is to be a person of trying character.

We Each Have Our Own Mess

Iron Man is one of my favorite superheroes. I even want to go to engineering school, because in my own way, I want to be the next Tony Stark.

But to hear Tony Stark’s best friend say that about him…reminds me that each of us are dealing with our own mess in life. Even the genius billionaire playboy philanthropist, Tony Stark himself.

Happy Hogan and Peter Parker reminisce about Tony Stark in Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)

Yeah, I can look at myself and say the same. I’m a mess. I second guess every decision. I’m all over the place.

But that’s okay. I’m human, I don’t have it all together. Probably never will.

But I’m trying. Everyday. I want to be a better person than I was yesterday.

I am always learning about myself, and how to navigate my relationships, in business, personal, or otherwise.

Learning from my mistakes, that is a lifelong, everyday task.

That is a task for each of us, even Iron Man.

Feria Finale

Thinking about Tony Stark’s story over the course of the Marvel films, I can recall his character gradually maturing.

He got out of his ego, and learned to empathize more with each film. Which is what I am working on.

And although he may have very well been a mess. Although he may have been…in the words of Natasha Romanoff…a “textbook narcissist” at one point…

he tried, and tried, and tried…every day.

To be a better person. And that’s what matters for each of us, the sincere effort in challenging ourselves to grow.■

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