Friday, April 09, 2010

My Unambitious Bucket List

Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
Old Time is still a-flying!
--excerpt from Robert Herrick's 17th century poem

I spend many hours plunked in front of my computer in lovely cubicle #RR3-G246. I fight with spreadsheets, get some neck pain, and maybe drink a cup of coffee or two. When I get home, I chase the Mad Dog around, do some cleaning, and cook dinner. After all this, I find it all too easy to be a lazy Jabba the Hut, sunken into the couch watching episodes of Lost or The Office.

The problem with this state of affairs is that life is short, and there's cool stuff out there that needs to be experienced. I constantly feel the tension between what is possible in my life, and what I'm actually out there living and accomplishing. How much potential am I wasting sitting on my ass? One of the cruelest cuts of all in growing older is the steady dimunation of one's potential and the inexorable cementing of who you have become. I'll never be a doctor, an astronaut, or President, and that's ok.

Allow me now to turn the wheel of the USS Emo and motor into brighter waters. Life is short. Everyone has wasted some potential and accumulated some regrets. But, it ain't over till it's over. Here we go again with the Dime Store Philosophy. Remember that Jack Nicholson movie about terminally ill old guys doing  cool stuff on their bucket list? It's actually not a bad idea!

I would like to tone down the television watching and attack my own version of the bucket list. I'm intentionally making mine pretty easy because I don't need another unachieved goal at this time, thank you very much. If I knock these out, then I'll move up to Bucket List 301: Intermediate Life Experiences (pre Req: Bucket List 101 - Elementary Adventures).

Without further ado, here they be:

1. Visit the observation deck of the University of Texas Tower. This thing was closed during my undergrad years, as a result of the bad mojo of the Tower shootings and a string of suicides. It's now open for business, and I've never been. Bucket Difficulty: 1.5 out of 10.

2. Visit the Hill Country Wineries: I've wanted to do this forever, but I've been too busy eating bon bons and wondering if the Lost smoke monster just might be a good guy. 

3. Go visit my friend Dan in California

4. Take Mikey to his first UT football game.

5. Write a book of some kind. Basically, I need to have a bunch of words on paper, and that paper should be bound in some fashion. I'll probably shoot for something as incredibly simple as a child's book for my boy. Then, I'll try something one step up from there: a sci-fi short story.

6. Visit my friends and coworkers in Slovakia, preferably on my employer's dime.

7. Become reasonably proficient in a foreign language. Spanish would be a good start. This one's been bothering me for a long time, but it ain't easy.

8. Have a daughter who will melt my heart and bring home potential suitors for me to menace.

9. Take my whole immediate family to Europe and reenact the Griswold European vacation. I kid, but a romp through Italy for some coffee, wine, pizza, and history would be fantastic.

10. Trek down to Lockhart and hit up the world famous barbeque joints. I life a short road trip away from these Food Network fixtures, and yet I've never been. Tsk. Tsk.

That's all I've got for now. Any readers have a bucket list?

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