People Share Their Best 'You Either Die The Hero Or Live Long Enough To Become The Villain' Experiences
"You either die the hero or live long enough to become the villain."
Though not necessarily a universal truth, all of us have witnessed unfortunate moments in our lives where we've seen this saying become a reality.
Be it seeing our favorite public figures take a serious fall from grace, someone we know and admire eventually disappointing us in a devastating manner, or even seeing ourselves turn into someone we promised we'd never become.
One Redditor was curious to hear people's examples of this saying coming to light, either from a personal experience or seeing it happen to a well-known, public figure, leading them to ask:
"Who is your example of 'you either die a hero, or live long enough to see yourself become the villain'?"
"He originally stood up for civil rights when it was really unpopular."
"Was hospitalized and accidentally placed in the black ward."
"When the doctors found out, they tried to move him, but he refused."
"Then he became a cult leader and used his power and influence to end the lives of a thousand people."- Crvsby
Earning a position of power
"Working in restaurant kitchens."
"You either burn out young, or become the boss that everyone hates."
"There's exceptions, but that's the rule."- grandpas_old_crow
"Henry Heimlich, inventor of the Heimlich Maneuver."
"Made up a bunch of untested uses for it, treating people having asthma attacks, and drowning victims were the two I remember that he publicly talked up."
"Later, he funded an experiment that involved injecting people with Malaria to see if it would treat other conditions.
"The experiment was found to be unethical by American review boards, so he conducted them in Ethiopia." - User Deleted
"In WW1 he led the French to victory at Verdun, one of the worst battles in human history."
"In WW2, after France was beaten, Petain was the head of state of Vichy France."
"Guy went from the Lion of Verdun to the biggest Nazi collaborator in France."- arthuranymoredonuts
"Every organ until it gets cancer."- SuperBaconjam
"He had the whole country behind him here in Ireland at one point bar people who thought combat sport is grotesque."
"He was witty, original, backing himself up and having a Hollywood like rise to stardom."
"Now he's someone who the whole country is ashamed of, goes punching old men, clearly sleeps around on his wife while she's at home with the kids, just a walking caricature of himself."
"He didn't listen to his own advice."
"Get out."- StephenPigot2020
Turning into our parents
"My dad used to annoy me by calling my Pokemon cards 'Pokey-Mans'."
"Now my kids have them and I do the same thing and it annoys the sh*t out of them."
"Thanks for the (Pokeyman) gold!"- rumpel4skinOU
"Almost died during the revolutionary way, if I recall correctly, and if he had he would have been remembered a huge hero, and a martyr."
"Instead he lived and changed sides, and is remembered only for his being a traitor."- uniqueperson22
Be it someone we knew quite intimately, or someone we admired from a far, it is always heartbreaking to see someone evolve from someone we love, to someone we utterly hate.
Reddit user sweet_chick283 asked: 'What do you secretly love that you would never admit to in public?;
What makes us all unique is our passions and the things we love, whether it's singing in the shower, reading books, or listening to specific music artists.
Unfortunately, we live in a world where we are judged for our various tastes and interests thanks to social media, and it makes us consciously selective about sharing the things we love on the internet.
Curious to hear about people's personal desires under anonymity, Redditor sweet_chick283 asked:
"What do you secretly love that you would never admit to in public?"
These aren't really chores for the following Redditors.
Good Clean Fun
"Mopping, im a janitor and generally hate my work... but damn mopping is so good."
"When you have a great rhythm going it is something special. I get the same feeling while I vacuum, but won’t let my wife know I enjoy it."
Act Of Unwrinkling
"Ironing clothes. A dozen of them. Can’t explain how it relaxes me. I told one person and they looked at me like I’m crazy."
"My mum misses the days when dad would be out on a Friday night, my brother out with friends and me upstairs quietly playing PS1. She would pour herself a Bacardi & Coke and do the ironing while watching her TV shows."
"I'm sure she doesn't really miss it now that we've moved out and they've retired but it was her wind-down after a busy working week so I can see how people can find it relaxing."
Our solo actions can spark joy.
Big Brother Is Watching
"pretending to be on the Truman show and whenever im in my house i act all inconspicuous so they dont know that i know that they’re watching me."
"C’mon man, you’re not supposed to let him know. You signed a contract when signing up for live views. I’m reporting you."
"Playing video games naked at home while eating cheese."
Releasing The Kraken
"I love the feeling when you've eaten good fibre and let out a solid long train log in the toilet. That feeling is heavenly."
"Even better when it’s a clean wipe and not a poo crayon."
"My (male 41) weekend routine is coming home from work, make hot chocolate, start a fire, dress in a ugly pink nightgown made for old ladies and watch forensic files."
Some people are obsessed with collecting things.
"Sanrio stationery stores. All those different multicolor pens, a thousand kinds of erasers, spiral bound notebooks galore... my kids sadly have absolutely no appreciation for this wonderland..."
It's A Staple
"Office supplies have a weird, special place in my heart ever since I was a kid. They don't even have to be 'cute' necessarily."
"Japan's legendary stationery stores is unironically a reason I want to go."
Not Caring Anymore
"The older I get the shorter that list gets. Not because I love less things, but because I don't care about hiding it."
"YES!! I'm 53 now. I'm working my first job in public since 2006. Today is Halloween and we're allowed to dress up so I am sitting here waiting to go to work dressed as a VERY bad Wednesday Addams. My bf said I'd 'look stupid' because no one else will probably dress up and I'm like, 'WHO CARES!' My makeup looks horrible and not like I practiced, but I DO NOT CARE! I'm having fun with it anyhow and I don't care if my coworkers dress up or not. I'm bein' ME! :)"
Honorable mentions start here.
"Picking up worms from the street and sidewalks when it rains and moving them into the dirt so they don’t burn in the sun, every time it rains I do this."
Hero Of The Moment
"Yoooo I scoot SO many snails and worms. I work as a tech/mechanic at an automotive shop, I had a peoject car towed to my house the other day and it was covered in snails. I saw them when the tow guy/coworker was unloading and I was like, 'oh! It comes with free snails!' and began moving them. He laughed then realized and said, '... Oh, you're serious. Uh... Okay.'"
"I don't care who knows it. These little things barely can look out for themselves, why shouldn't we if we can take a moment to help? I don't care what happens next, it probably doesn't matter overall but I can help this moment."
Why should some of the hidden desires mentioned above have to be secret?
Redditors opening up about some of these would make them a hit at parties–no shaming.
As a matter of fact, I'll totally be down for a Forensic Files viewing party where we all make hot chocolate, light the fireplace, and cozy up together in our respective pink ugly nightgowns for old ladies.
Companies and products rebrand for a variety of reasons.
Sometimes they want to revitalize a dying brand.
Or stay fresh and modern.
Other times they're trying to put a negative public image in their rear view mirror.
And sometimes, someone somewhere in a company has low impulse control.
Reddit user PulakHasan asked:
"What's the Weirdest Rebranding of all time?"
"Weight Watchers abbreviated their name down to 'WW' and in doing so, increased the syllables needed to pronounce their new company name."
"You burn more calories uttering the extra syllables."
"Waitr was an extremely successful delivery service here. They had full time employees and you could get food delivered in 30-45 minutes."
"Then, they made everybody an independent contractor and started calling themselves ASAP."
"'As slow as possible' caught on and they lost the majority market share within a month."
"I still don’t understand HBO dropping probably the most prestigious name in cable tv/streaming."
"Right?! Also it literally means Home Box Office - that’s the best name for a streaming service????"
Nordic Choice Hotels
"Nordic Choice Hotels rebranded to 'Strawberry'."
"They have to mention their old name all the time, because Strawberry could be absolutely anything."
"If only it were 'Strawberry Hotels' but it's not. It's just Strawberry."
"They removed the part that explains what kind of business it is."
"USWest-->Qwest-->CenturyLink-->Lumen I don’t care what your name is."
"Can I have more than 10mbps DSL at my address?"
"In Europe, and it's now Level3--> Centurylink--> Lumen--> Colt."
"I'm sure they rename in the hope people forget the incompetence."
"My mom has worked for them since 1977 when they were Northwestern Bell."
"She's been through a billion name changes."
Circuit City IQ Crew
"Circuit City rebranding their PC technician division from IQ Crew (which predated Geek Squad, by the way) to..."
"I worked at a Circuit City from 2005-2008 and we all thought it was a prank when we saw the announcement."
"'The intensity of fire with the loyalty of man's best friend'."
"I sh*t you not—that was the marketing."
"When after a major oil spill, BP changed their branding to Beyond Petroleum for an ad campaign showing how they were investing in renewables."
"Logo change too."
"An oil spilled followed by a huge effort to cover it up, including dumping Corexit into the water to mix with the oil and make it sink."
"So it was no longer visible from aerial shots, but it did far, far more damage mixed with a dangerous chemical and sitting on the sea floor than slowly evaporating or being soaked up on the surface."
"When BP purchased Amoco, they quickly rebranded all the stations to BP."
"Not sure if it is everywhere but Amoco had a lot of brand recognition in the Midwest and a lot of people just didn’t like BP."
"Eventually, they started rebranding some of their stations back to Amoco to cash in on nostalgia."
"I always thought it was dumb but never realized that so many people hated it until after I worked for BP (very briefly) and was told the story of how much pushback they got."
British Petroleum (BP Oil)/Paul Sableman
"Overstock.com I think qualifies for weird rebrand."
"Bed Bath and Beyond went out of business and was bought out by Overstock and then Overstock just rebranded everything to Bed Bath and Beyond."
"If you go to overstock.com it’s just BBB."
"When Snoop Dogg (temporarily) changed his name to Snoop Lion to make a reggae album."
"Snoop’s original name on Death Row was 'Snoop Doggy Dogg'. When he left Death Row and went to No Limit, he had to alter his name (which might have been his original name) to 'Snoop Dogg'."
"Snoop’s mother used to call him Snoopy as a nickname which is the origin."
"The Charles Schulz people would have had a field day."
"Books-A-Million to 'BAM'."
"I was in a parking lot with one and had no idea it was a bookstore, as I was a bit too far out to see more than 'BAM' from where I was parked."
"Everytime I see the new KIA logo I assume its a NIN [Nine Inch Nails] fan."
"I thought it was KN for an embarrassingly long time."
"KIA changed their logo on their cars and Google showed an uptick in the searches for 'K N cars' because people liked the look of them but didn’t realise it was a KIA."
Mark Chan on Unsplash
"Royal Mail deciding Consignia was the way to go forwards."
"They wanted to go international but they lost so much money that year they had to stay national and reversed the name back."
"Twitter to X."
"And then everyone still refers to it as Twitter."
"'A user on X, formerly known as Twitter, posted…'.”
"Rather like to see 'A user on Twitter, erroneously known as X, posted...'."
"'A user on twitter, largely unknown as X, posted...'."
"A few days ago, I saw an article that said 'Twitter, which Elon Musk incorrectly thinks is called X for some reason...'."
"That was pretty funny."
"In Chicago we still call it the Sears Tower [renamed Willis Tower in 2009]."
"And in Pittsburgh, it’s still Heinz Field [renamed Acrisure Stadium in 2022]."
"And in Toronto, it’s still the Skydome [renamed Rogers Centre in 2005]."
"And in New York when you take 287 across the Hudson it's still the Tappan Zee Bridge [renamed Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge in 2017]. "
"A lot of LA people still call it Staples Center [renamed Crypto.com Arena in 2021]."
"In Denver we will always say Mile High Stadium [renamed Empower Field at Mile High in 2019]."
Some rebrandings make perfect sense to the public.
Others are utterly baffling.
What would you add to this list?
I freely admit I'm of a certain age where my primary education occurred before the age of the internet—when our questions were answered with conversations with experts, encyclopedias or knowing how to use card catalogs.
My knowledge of the Dewey Decimal System is largely useless today.
Research is drastically different now—sorry Melvil Dewey. Internet search engines quickly became the difference between occasionally finding an outdated version of the information we were looking for and rarely not finding current information on the most obscure of topics.
Unless your Google game is super weak, you're likely to find what you're looking for or something close to it unlike the good old days when our chances were hit or mis—with lots of misses.
So what do we use this amazing, life-changing tool for?
Reddit user b-secret asked:
"What is the most embarrassing thing you have ever Googled?"
"what's the alcohol percentage in 70% rubbing alcohol?"
"55% alcohol, 15% rubbing"
"I Googled my work because I couldn’t remember my boss’ name after working there for 8 months."
"I just blanked and couldn’t think of it."
"I Google how to spell restaurant all the time."
"I'm like that but with Febuary."
"I go into incognito mode to check spellings of words I should know how to spell."
"I was trying to find the name of those signs where a word is written down the side and each letter is used for a descriptive word."
"Confusing I know."
"So here’s an example: False Evidence Appearing Real"
"I know it has to have a name. So I googled 'Sign where every word starts with a letter' and Goggle responded with 'Did you mean a sentence?'.”
"Googled green beans once, was super high and forgot what they looked like."
"I did the same thing with beets."
Gaby Yerden on Unsplash
That Movie, With the Guy and the Stuff...
"I'll forget the name of a movie and just type in random sh*t I think I remember. Usually it works."
"Like 'that movie where the kid sleeps and has weird dreams and flies on a bed'."
"Works like a charm."
Did They Have Blue Feet?
"I was only 10."
"I was surprised to find some."
"I’m 39 and I Google this every day."
"They're nice birds but are they really worth Googling everyday?"
"I used to search something like 'no clothes' or 'without clothes' or something like that when I was a kid."
"Then I learnt the word NAKED because of the TV show Naked and Afraid."
"Then searched it so many times that my autocorrect started to show that word first when I wanted to type something."
"I like to Google Bing or Duckduckgo when I need to use them."
"My favorite band growing up was 'The Barenaked Ladies'."
"When I was at school, I once Googled them and clicked on a link that said 'free shows!'."
"I forgot what a 'gondola' was called so I typed in 'Thing that carries you through the mountains in a basket'."
"I once forgot the word for 'door' so my brain reached for adjacent concepts, smashed them together and threw them out my mouth: 'house portal'."
It Just Doesn't Translate
"I have to search a random word 'auf Englisch' or a random word 'auf Deutsch'."
"Every damn day."
"It took me a minute to realize that there was no way to translate Schadenfreude into English."
"I found out that as long as you're logged into Google, all your searches are saved to your Google account (I'm not talking about browser history)."
"So I looked back, and the 1st thing I ever googled after getting a Google account was 'Can ducks fly'."
"I've no idea why I googled this. I know ducks can fly."
You Ate What‽‽
"Once I was with some friends and I was telling them about how when I was a kid we only got to eat nuts as a special treat around Christmas."
"Then I mentioned how much I liked squirrel nuts and no one knew what they were. So I Googled 'squirrel nuts' with image search."
"Not at all what we ate at Christmas time."
"Finally found out what my family called 'squirrel nuts' were actually called hazelnuts."
"A few years ago my coworker and I were looking at the calendar at work. It had pictures of birds and we were trying to figure out what kind of bird was pictured for that month."
"I can’t remember what she thought it was, but I darned sure it was a Great Tit."
"We have a great relationship and have been working together for a long time but we tend to argue like an old married couple. So we went to Mr Google for the answer."
"Let me tell you that Googling Great Tit at work isn’t something I will ever do again."
"For the record, I was right. The bird was a Great Tit."
Great Tit holds an insect in its beak
A Perry on Unsplash
Hope some of these folks remembered to clear their browser and search histories.
So, what's your hilarious—or embarrassing—little Google secret search?
Life is all about learning new things, including learning new things about the people in your life. Sometimes, the things you learn are shocking, disgusting, or even scary.
I was the new kid in town when I was in fifth grade and my first friend was this quiet (and cute) boy in my class. He and I remained friends through middle school, and even though we drifted apart in high school, our interactions when we ran into each other in the halls or the cafeteria were really nice.
All throughout school and even beyond, he remained quiet, polite, and reserved. Just a few years ago, I read a news article written about him. He had apparently fatally wounded his father after an argument.
I had to reread the article several times to make sure it was really about my old friend. I think about it a lot, and still can't believe it!
I'm not the only one that has a shocking story like that. A lot of Redditors learned shocking or scary things about people from their childhood, and are ready to share.
It all started when Redditor ValuableHovercraft90 asked:
"What's the scariest thing you have found out about someone from your childhood (old friends, teachers, etc)?"
"That the boy who lived across the street and moved when I was 6 is still obsessed with me and my sister 30+ years later and posts ramblings on Facebook with our names and that he's going to be with us. Pretty terrifying honestly."
The Worst List
"A neighbour died when he was 30. Police searched a trailer he owned and found weapons, bombs and a list of people he wanted to kill. My uncle was on that list."
"I'm glad this ended the way it did."
"One of my best friends (and locker partner) from high school was kidnapped by terrorists in Iraq. After a nightmare of 6+ months, all went silent. We buried an empty casket in his memory 10 years later."
"This is horrifying. How incredibly sad for family to never get any closure. Very sad to read this. :("
"About 15 years ago my dad received a very good offer for work in Iraq, as a construction specialist. He was considering going, since at the same time the financial crisis started in Europe, but then one of his friends, a civil engineer, was kidnapped. Never returned back either."
"Same thing for my dad old coworker told him how great the money was. Dude got sniped working on a radio tower or something. My dad luckily was like, "I got a wife and family that would kill me for doing something so dangerous.""
End Of The Friendship
"One of my dad's good friends, and my "uncle", just stopped coming around one day. I was told he was always busy with work, away, etc."
"Turns out, he killed 3 people in a drug deal gone bad and got life in prison."
"What's scary, is that we were over at his house for a weekend BBQ with a bunch of people earlier in the day of the night he did it, and it happened at his house."
"Don't know if it was scary, but I grew up with a kid whose birthday was the day before mine so we almost always shared birthdays in elementary school. We were friends, even spent the night at his house growing up. Later on in our teens, he started getting into some really dark stuff. I recognize that now as his being a sociopath, but like most everybody else at the time, figured it was just him going through some kind of emo phase. Over the years, we lost touch but I would occasionally run into him around town and our meetings were cordial, if not friendly."
"Last year, he was sentenced to 35 years in prison for killing a man back in 1993, roughly 3 years after we got out of High School. Apparently he, his sister and another man lured this guy out to the boonies and killed him to steal money he had gotten in an insurance settlement."
"The only reason they were caught is the other guy got religion, felt remorse and went on the local TV station and aired a confession before turning himself in (He got 25 to life)."
"A girl I went to school with did the same thing. She was the nicest girl, got good grades & was kind of a dork. Mixed with the wrong people after graduation. She and two others lured an old man into an abandoned building, stabbed him and robbed him. He later died from his wounds."
The Worst Afternoon
"I had a friend in grade school who was being raised by her single dad. She had a unique name and pretty face. She never talked about her mom, and she was super outgoing, so all us kids just made friends with her quickly. It was weird her dad never brought her to our birthday parties, even though she was always invited, but we didn’t think much of it. A couple times, she was allowed to ride the bus home with me after school, and we played and had fun until her dad came to pick her up. Later in the school year, she invited me to ride the bus to her house, and my mom agreed. I was 10. It was the scariest afternoon of my young life. I cannot articulate the extreme tension in her home. We weren’t allowed to make any noise, and we mostly stayed outside, me desperate for my mom to arrive."
"Her dad screamed at us for opening the door, and I was too nervous to go into the house to use the restroom. I knew she was embarrassed that there were no snacks or comforting interactions, like at my house. I didn’t really tell anyone how uncomfortable the experience was. After that day, I didn’t hang out with her a lot. We were in different classes, drifted apart, and decades later, when my own daughter asked to go to a friend’s house, I thought about that girl."
"As an adult, I figured out her dad probably worked a night shift and tried to sleep during the day…or he was an alcoholic who was really angry. Maybe both? I looked her up on social media, and thanks to her unique name and face, I recognized her immediately. She’s a perfectly well-adjusted woman with a beautiful family. She even had pictures of her kids with her dad and tributes to him as the greatest father and grandpa. Her whole page made me wonder what the hell I experienced that afternoon in the 4th grade?"
School Is Supposed To Be Safe!
"In our school, we had something called "de halte." In English, it means "the halt" literally translated. Basically time out. BIf you had a meltdown in class or you were just a little sh*thead, you were sent there for 15 minutes or so to cool off.
The de hatle teacher got fired and jailed for breaking 4 different wrists of 4 different students by bending them the wrong way..."
"There was this classmate a grade below me but all grades shared the same drama class. She was weird and kind of "off." I tried to befriend her at one point and was rebuffed. It later came out that she was actually an almost 30-year-old woman who would show up in a new area claiming to be a 15-year-old runaway. Kind of freaked me out."
It turns out it was a good thing that the friendship didn't work out!