We all have them. The larger than life people we look up to and admire. How did they get there? What’s their story? How did they achieve what they achieved – and have fun while they were doing it?
It’s a conundrum alright. But one we’ve made real progress to solve. We’ve delved into the annals of the internet and discovered what legends do:
1) Lead your own motley gang
Not like a mafia mob. But a group of people who have an idea, something cool they want to achieve together. Like starting your own radio station.
True story: between 1964 and 1967 a group of frustrated young DJs got together to host a new station – Radio London. But because of broadcasting law they had to do it from a ship anchored in the North Sea.
At its peak, the station had 12 million listeners in the United Kingdom. It might have kept going if the government hadn’t enforced a new law to shut down offshore broadcasting without a license.
Nowadays the scene is talked of fondly by all – and it made the career of DJ John Peel, whose radio sessions are still renowned and revisited to this day.
2) Embrace your eccentricities
Being lovably odd is another solid tactic for those who want to go down in history.
Like the Victorian-era writer Oscar Wilde. Among other things, it’s said he used to walk a lobster on a leash. He’s celebrated for his writing, but his personality has made him an interesting figure to this day.
Even our generation’s most eccentric Englishman, Stephen Fry from the telly, is a fan.
But nowadays walking a lobster around campus is unlikely to give you much cred. Yet we are part of a society that increasingly values personality quirks. So you might allow yourself to indulge your zanier impulses now and then.
Besides, it could even be good for your health.
3) Do the thing you love
What unites these three people:
The illusionist Derren Brown
The film-maker Christopher Nolan
And the social media overlord Mark Zuckerberg?
You got it.
Passion drives all three of them. All three are known to have spent countless hours practising, working, and perfecting the thing they love.
Just look at Nolan for example.
Matthew Tempest, a guy who knew Nolan at UCL said: “He’d selected UCL specifically for its film-making facilities and had been making movies since he was 7 years old, filming his Star Wars figurines with some primitive early VHS recorder, presumably.”
No wonder he became so famous.
Make your own story
It takes something almost magical to become the stuff of legend. It’s never a guarantee.
But we’ve just seen three stories which managed the journey. And you never know. Yours could turn out to be the next.
What a great excuse to have more fun.