Do Big Moments Define You or Does the Day to Day Define You?

Knows3Chords

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My 94 year old father passed away in May. The whole family gathered in the old house to pick out pictures to show at his wake. There were so many pictures, that it turned into an all day thing. There must about 20 of us there, his kids, their wives and husbands, and grandchildren and great grandchildren. Some of the most powerfully emotionally impactful pictures were him doing just regular everyday things. They brought back strong memories that were vivid, bittersweet and meaningful. I'd have to say that it might be hard to think of being defined by the everyday, but after a lifetime of it when it is all added up, that's were meaning can be found.
 

Dan German

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Just spitballing here, but my feeling is that the everyday is what makes you. What you do in the big moment is, at least to some extent, predicated on that, but it is not predicted by it. There are certainly occasions when the big moment can allow for unexpected behaviour or a complete change of self, but in general, I’ll go with the everyday being the major factor.
 

nvilletele

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Was reading a really great exchange between Dan German and Studio and from it, the question came to me... Are we defined by what we do in big moments or are we defined by our everyday exchanges and life?

In war of the worlds, Tom Cruise plays a pretty absent father who has been selfish and not a good father to his children. He hasn't put family first for many years, his children see him more as a sibling (and an errant one) but, during an invasion of aliens, he steps up and becomes a responsible adult.

Or the guy who all his life dedicates himself to being a good guy, kind and friendly, volunteers, does fund raisers, serves as a campus police officer, knows all the kids, does his best to give them good counsel, but on the day that a crazy shooter guy shows up, he is unable to storm the room and vanquish the bad guy, instead, he is stricken with indecision and is unable to move.

Or the dad that is attentive to family and friends, active in community and leadership, helpful and kind to all, but who also has a secret life that would shock many of those same people, not necessarily illegal activities, but shocking for the paragon.

What does define us?

All of it defines us. We are everything we do.

One can be a stalwart person day to day, and be a coward when faced with an extreme situation .

One can be a total mess in life, but steps up as a hero in some extreme situation.

Or one can be a failure, or success, both in general and in response to extreme situations.

We are all that we do, all that we are. No cherry picking.
 

blowtorch

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I think a man's worst moment and his baddest behavior defines him to a large degree.
Women too

for example, if you kill someone in cold blood- it's likely nothing you do will ever be that "big", it can't be undone.

I say cheating on a spouse is the same.

Some behavior is defining

i mean sure there's redemption.

that doesn't take away consequences
 

bottlenecker

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We all hope it's the big moments, because it's a lot easier to have one of those than that day to day grind. If we've lived badly, we can still hope for a big redeeming moment, like winning the lottery.
I'm reminded of the saying that it's easier to die for a cause than live for it.
 

Masmus

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When everything is going well in life it's easy to make positive choices. For a long time I have thought when you make the right choice when it's not easy or not what you want to do but you do the right thing anyway, that is what defines you.
 

getbent

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Depends what you define as a big moment. In the example of Cruise in WOTW (terrible film btw) Cruise was MADE by the big moment of the Alien Invasion. Plenty of other examples abound of this.

BUT

Is it a big moment that makes someone, or does even an everyday occurrence that changes someone make THAT everyday occurrence a big moment?

this made me think of Hodor in Game of Thrones. He is kind of an ancillary character until his MOMENT which he has prepared all of his life.

Sully Sullenberger was both consistently a good dude AND in a moment of major crisis, able to rise above and save hundreds of lives.

I remember an interview with Barry Bonds where he said that the key to being great was to 'be as consistent as possible, do the same things, every day' and build on them. Have the exact same swing and same technique until it is the way you always do it.

In a previous career, we used to ask, is this as good as it can possibly be with the resources we have? Is it good enough? and that changed our culture dramatically.
 

getbent

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All of it defines us. We are everything we do.

One can be a stalwart person day to day, and be a coward when faced with an extreme situation .

One can be a total mess in life, but steps up as a hero in some extreme situation.

Or one can be a failure, or success, both in general and in response to extreme situations.

We are all that we do, all that we are. No cherry picking.
this makes me think of Paul Simon's 'Call me Al'

I need a photo opportunity, I need a shot redemption, don't want to end up a cartoon in a cartoon graveyard....

that whole song kind of approaches this.
 

Peegoo

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We all hope it's the big moments, because it's a lot easier to have one of those than that day to day grind. If we've lived badly, we can still hope for a big redeeming moment, like winning the lottery.
I'm reminded of the saying that it's easier to die for a cause than live for it.

Reminds me of a line from Catch-22: "It's better to live on your feet than to die on your knees." Followed by the counter argument!
 

Skully

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Was reading a really great exchange between Dan German and Studio and from it, the question came to me... Are we defined by what we do in big moments or are we defined by our everyday exchanges and life?

In war of the worlds, Tom Cruise plays a pretty absent father who has been selfish and not a good father to his children. He hasn't put family first for many years, his children see him more as a sibling (and an errant one) but, during an invasion of aliens, he steps up and becomes a responsible adult.

Or the guy who all his life dedicates himself to being a good guy, kind and friendly, volunteers, does fund raisers, serves as a campus police officer, knows all the kids, does his best to give them good counsel, but on the day that a crazy shooter guy shows up, he is unable to storm the room and vanquish the bad guy, instead, he is stricken with indecision and is unable to move.

What does define us?

In one's personal life, it's the day-to-day. In artistic and athletic endeavors, it's more the big moments.

Or the dad that is attentive to family and friends, active in community and leadership, helpful and kind to all, but who also has a secret life that would shock many of those same people, not necessarily illegal activities, but shocking for the paragon.

This reminded me of the unseemly demise of KTLA anchor Chris Burrous in 2019. It involved a motel room with disco lights, meth rocks in the rectum, syringes of GHB, poppers and vomiting into an S&M mask.
 

Skully

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Like the Human Centipede franchise , I"m not even gonna check into that

Burrous' demise was spectacular, suprising, sad... and as good as any of the half-made-up stuff in "Hollywood Babylon." My family watched him on the news, and we were all quite shocked. He was part of KTLA's weekend news show, which is very casual and intimate, so you feel like you know them. We did not know Burrous.
 

getbent

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telekaster1999

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I think what defines us are our core beliefs, whatever they are. Most times people will live out daily what they believe. I know personally two things I think about whether or not a person is "good" or not is, do they tell the truth and how do they treat other people.
 




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