The Only 3 Ways to Leave A Legacy

So you can become immortal, and then die.

John Gorman
8 min readAug 4, 2023
Photo by Cole Parsons on Unsplash

“What is your greatest ambition in life?” “To become immortal, and then die.”

— Jean-Luc Godard, Breathless (1960)

I always forget to remember my dreams. I mean — I’m sure I have them, but my mind blanks by the time I wake up.

On the rare occasion a thought-bubble slips through the sleep-wake barrier, it’s almost always about the same thing: I’m dead.

I die in just about 100% of my dreams. In fact, I’m not sure what else people dream about. Even in daytime thought, my demise weighs on me — how to delay it, how to defeat it, how to defy it.

How could it not? Death is the only promise that’s also a guarantee. I know I’ll meet my end and you’ll meet yours. We’re here, then we’re gone — every human, animal, plant, organism, cell — up and vanished like the waves that dared to crash upon the shoreline.

Still, there’s hope.


While it’s impossible to actually live forever, we can learn, make, experience, and share enough of ourselves to achieve the illusion of immortality. We can approach the asymptotic, even though we’ll never touch it.



John Gorman

Yarn Spinner + Brand Builder + Renegade. Award-winning storyteller with several million served. For inquiries: