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From One Universe to Another, Planet Lee

by; Chris Mulkey

Spider-Man, Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Doctor Strange, Doctor Doom, X-Men, Avengers, Professor X, Jean Grey, Silver Surfer, Magneto, Kingpin, Blob, Black Panther, Daredevil, Iceman, Electro, The Fantastic Four….

What do all of these fictional characters (among many, many more) have in common? One man. One LEGEND of a man. Mr. Stan Lee, who left our known universe at the age of 95, on November 12, 2018.

While we primarily work in the patent universe here at TECHSON, invention is a central part of our industry. Stan Lee was certainly an inventor, though with the artistic flare. As a child, I fantasized about being one of his superheroes, sometimes wishing my wrists flung spider webs, that I had retractable claws, that I could move objects with my mind, that I could fly, teleport, run at lightning speed, see through walls…you get the idea.

After hearing the news of his passing, I had a revelation - one that made me contemplate how much impact his creations have had on my career’s trajectory, and then much deeper, into the impact on how I process my environment, how I think. What I realized is that his creativity had a huge impact on my own creativity, by feeding my imagination and by fueling my desire to eternally ponder the impossible. I have an insatiable desire to understand how and why things work, and how to make things work better. It’s no surprise that I became an engineer, but my revelation is that Stan Lee’s creations likely played a significant role in why I became an engineer. By opening my imagination to the impossible, he inspired me to always question what is, in fact, impossible. Because as we all know, impossible is perpetually being redefined.

How many of you are like me, comic book geeks and engineers/scientists? How many of you contemplated the origin of that imagination and curiosity? Did Stan Lee’s creations play any role in that?

Cheers to you, Stan. Hope your next universe is as fun as you made this one.

P.S. (trivia) Regarding a photo of one of my prized possessions below, does anyone care to divulge their nerdiness and explain the significance of this issue? (no cheating)

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