Thursday, July 24, 2008

75 things to do before you die

Esquire has come up with a list of 75 things to do before you die. The website sucks, so here's the list.

1: Play rugby. I haven't done this one, but my brother plays and coaches, and has played in New Zealand, where they do it right. I can take tips from him.

2: Repair an appliance. I am not qualified for this.

3: Fly the red-eye from Vegas. I've flown the red-eye from Vancouver, does that count?

4: Fly a Cessna. Done! My dad used to fly Pipers and Cessnas for years. I've flown them many times.

5: Make a list of seventy-five things you want to do before you die. It's hard. As soon as I can scrape together the time to make such a list, I will.

6: Fast for three days. Drink water. Er, no.

7: Drive the Great Ocean Road in southern Australia. Or the Pacific Coast Highway. I've driven a small portion of the Pacific Coast Highway, and it left me wanting more. I'd love to do the whole thing sometime.

8: Make a perfect omelet. For what value of 'perfect'?

9: Drive by yourself from coast to coast. Wow, that's a long way. I did discover last week that it is possible to canoe from the East coast of Canada to the West with the longest portage being only 19km.

10: Recognize the accomplishments of others. That's an easy one. I'm proud of my wife's recent accomplishments - finishing her degree and doing the Weekend to End Breast Cancer walk last year.

11: Do a flip off a diving board. Nail it. Done. I won a silver medal in diving at the Quebec Games a long time ago.

12: Leave yourself a letter in a library book. Look for it twenty years later. Will there still be libraries twenty years from now?

13: Watch a bad movie so often that when you see it by accident you can recite lines verbatim just before they are spoken. Suggest a bad movie and I might give this one a shot.

14: Toboggan, aggressively. Elmira Golf Course, winter. Meet me there.

15: Scuba dive. I would try this sometime. I dive a lot with mask and snorkel.

16: Drink mescal in Mexico. Are you kidding? People get killed in Mexico all the time.

17: Cultivate a reputation. Ask anyone at SuperMegaCorp about me. I think I have a reputation.

18: Learn three to four chords on the guitar. Well, I just bought a guitar, so I think I can call this one done.

19: Live in a hotel suite for a week. Done. It was for work, though, does that still count?

20: Milk a cow. Drink that. Er, no.

21: Build a fence. Together we stand, divided we fall.

22: Carry a totem in your pocket. Is that a totem pole in your pocket, or are you glad to see me? Oh, not that kind of totem.

23: Help someone dig out. Done! If you mean digging out from under lots of snow.

24: Pick an animal. Something cool like a wolverine. Go see it in the wild. Done! I've seen moose (really close up), deer, coyote, fox...

25: Shoplift. Er, no.

26: Throw a real party. Done! But it was in high school.

27: Live outside the homeland. Why would I leave the best country in the world?

28: Start something that scares you. I started a really old lawnmower once. It made me uncomfortable, but I wouldn't say I was scared.

29: Choose a word or a phrase and actively work to never use it again. It is what it is.

30: Eat mussels in Bruges. I've had shrimp in Bruges, does that count?

31: Break a sheet of plate glass with a ball-peen hammer. Sounds dangerous.

32: Cook the same thing (over and over) until you are known for it. Done! My BBQ rotisserie chicken is a killer.

33: Overspend. Have kids, this is easy.

34: Have a threesome. Sounds dangerous.

35: Quit something you love. That's dumb.

36: Take care of someone else's three-year-old for a day. Done! Great birth control.

37: Get very good at a sport that isn't a sport. Ok, curling attackers, let me hear it.

38: Listen to war stories. I don't know a veteran. At least, not one that will talk about it.

39: Tell war stories. Here are a few.

40: Write someone else's life story without mentioning yourself. Again, if I only had the time.

41: Sing in public. Done! I was in a band in university, The Rump Rangers. Good story behind that name. I should tell you sometime.

42: Sell everything you don't need. Once. Elmira has an annual garage sale, second weekend in May. Usually lands on my anniversary.

43: Play golf at Carnoustie. If I'm going all the way to Scotland, it's to drink a fine single malt, not play golf.

44: Play chess until you beat someone you shouldn't, then quit forever. Done! I beat my dad once, but I think he let me win.

45: Give up your seat. Done!

46: Kill, dress, cook, and eat wild game. My dog takes care of that for me.

47: Attend the funeral of someone you didn't know that well. Done!

48: Take a vow. Keep it. Done! Been married 17 years.

49: Eat a six-course meal that you prepared. I would like to do this.

50: Live at a high altitude. At a higher altitude with flag unfurled. We reached the dizzy heights of that dreamed-of world. I've visited Whistler and been to the top, does that count?

51: Spend some time working for tips. No thanks, that's why I went to school.

52: Overeat for a week. That's called 'camping', isn't it? Or I guess that's overdrink for a week.

53: Make a movie, even a short one. Done! But it was in high school.

54: Give a panhandler all of your money. I don't carry money.

55: Make beer, wine, or moonshine. Done! I've made beer - it was terrible. And wine - some of it was excellent.

56: Read Lolita. I'd be open to that.

57: Have sex in a body of water. Done! It was a hot tub, does that count? Too much information?

58: Ride a horse. Done! But it was in high school.

59: Eat congee. Eat haggis. Eat tongue. Eat kidneys. Eat brain. Eat testicles. Nope, nope, nope, nope, done!, nope. That reminds me of a good joke.

60: Walk twenty miles. Bring water. That's 32km. I've walked about 15km at a time. My wife, however, walked 60km over two days last fall.

61-63: Go to the desert. Take long-lasting drugs. Drink water. Can't see these happening.

64: Watch television for twenty-four hours uninterrupted. Sounds dangerous.

65: Save something from the dump. Have you seen my basement?

66: Climb something you are afraid of. If that was "someone" instead of "something" I'd say Done! But it was in high school.

67: Get a manicure. Not interested.

68: Eat a two-course meal that you grew. I will be harvesting basil tonight for a nice pesto. I picked some blackberries yesterday, does that count as two courses?

69: Get a deep-tissue massage. Not interested.

70: Sleep outside for a week. Done! Does the trailer count? If so, that was last week, and next week too!

71: Put a hundred bucks on a long shot. To win. No thanks.

72: Go to Paris. Tell no one where you are. Stay there for two weeks. I would do that in a hurry. The kids might wonder where we went though...

73: Raise a dog. Oh man, done, done, done.

74: Peg the speedometer. I don't think my cars can go that fast.

75: Bungee jump. I would do this.


  1. 13: Here's an excellent choice (IMNSHO). Or, if you want more work, you could try this one.

  2. I'd be afraid that my daughters would have cheerleader aspirations if they saw your first choice.

    But you can't go wrong with a bikini car wash...

    My favourite Lord of the Rings summary was told to me thusly: "They walked. Then they walked some more. Then they got some ponies. Then they lost them, and had to walk some more."

    That was the book summary - I can just imagine how the movie summary would go. Something like, "an insurmountable army of orcs arrive. The five heroes behead them one-by-one, without suffering a scratch. An incidental character is mortally wounded, but has time before dying to have a vision of a beautiful elf, and to encourage his buddies to carry on.