Because I Can

Do you have a bucket list?  That’s a list of things you want to do or accomplish before you ‘kick the bucket’ (die).  Many baby boomers have such a list.  Younger and older people too, probably.

Items on a bucket list often include outlandish, exciting, thrilling and dangerous activities like skydiving or wrestling an alligator.  Less adventurous people might list travel destinations or people they want to meet.

I’ve been thinking about my bucket list a lot lately.  My new-found life alone has opened up opportunities that used to have limitations.  I believe I will live a long time, and therefore I have plenty of time to check off items on my list.  But life can end or become debilitating in the blink of an eye, so why should I wait for some uncertain tomorrow to do things I want to do?

The items on my list might seem odd but some are on there just because I want to challenge myself.  There are things I want to do and places I want to see.  Although I might explain my strategy here, I do not have to explain this to anybody.  These are things I want to simply because I can – or I believe I can.

A small sampling:

- Interview a U.S. President.  I’ve interviewed mayors, Senators and Representatives, so why not a President?

- Learn to speak Italian.

- Visit Tuscany and have a conversation with a local, in Italian.

- Build up my chest and arm muscles to the point where I get noticed.  I’ll never be a body-builder but I like the attention sometimes.  And I’d like to think age shouldn’t limit me.  My occasional lack of motivation might limit me but age will not.

- I’d like to have … wait, I can’t say that one here.  Sorry.  Moving on …

- Ride a shift in a hurricane hunter airplane.  OK, this might be the only thing on my list that is dangerous enough that I’d have to sign a release.  And I might actually be scared.  But I want to do it.

- Write a book, publish it and sell enough copies to cover my costs.  As I’m writing this, I recall that I’ve blogged about some of this before.   Hmmm, I guess this post is a bit of an update.

- Learn to play a musical instrument with enough precision to confidently perform a little bit in front of an audience.  I have played trombone and bass guitar in public but was not very good with either and never did a solo.  I also studied saxophone for a few months.  I am actually shopping for an acoustic guitar and contacted a neighborhood music school about lessons.

- Get a college degree.  It is difficult for me to admit that I stopped going to college in my third year and changed majors so many times that I never progressed to any advanced classes.  I started again just a few years ago but stopped.  I will start again.

- See a tornado.  I actually did see one a few months ago, but it wasn’t a well-formed one.  I want to see one of those ‘we’re not in Kansas anymore’ tornadoes … from a safe distance.

- Have a birthday party on my 100th birthday.  Wow, what will our lives be like in another forty or fifty years?  I want to blog about that when I get there.  And give a speech about it to whoever is there.  And play a song on my guitar.  Because I can.