A bucket list is a checklist of things you want to do before you kick the bucket. I have a list of things I do not want to do before I kick the bucket, and fully intend to avoid such items with all of my strength. I call it my “rhymes with Bucket” list and it contains things I will avoid like the plague.
1. Climbing Mt. Everest - If I manage to stay out of the Himalayas this item should be easy not to accomplish. Call me old fashioned, but rocky freezing cold perilous altitudes do not attract. Although as the father of three small children I have longed for a personal Nepali Sherpa to help me carry their shit, I recognize that it would be hard for a modern-day Tenzig Norgay to walk around the local mall carrying a Lightning McQueen knapsack filled with diapers, Scobby snacks and legos. All things considered, I simply do not wish to climb every mountain.
2. Attending the Burning Man Festival – I refer to the weird summer festival in Neveda, USA where the participants burn a giant effigy of a man in one of the world’s most pointless gatherings since the Osmond Family Reunion. This festival is not to be confused with my Irish friend in Bray who regularly fails to apply sunscreen during trips to the beach (though the rain has essentially cancelled that issue this year).
3. Running with the Bulls in Pamplona – Being gored, trampled and crushed among excited Spaniards is not my cup of tea. If I am going to die due to my association with cattle I prefer it to be the rather slower accumulation of the effects of a life of eating cheeseburgers. Social occasions with farm animals always ends in tears, just ask Catherine the Great of Russia.
4. Helping to Complete the Sagrada Familia Basilica- Not only do I intend to not run with the Spaniards in Pamplona, I will resist working with them in Barcelona. They have been working on the basilica since 1882 (at union rates no doubt) and don’t anticipate finishing it until 2026. Who am I to speed up the process? Besides, I prefer the Cathedral of the Holy Cross and St. Eulalia, already assembled.
5. Swimming Across the English Channel – Challenging tides, unfriendly jellyfish and modern bathing suits are bad enough, but the fact that once one leaves Dover there is no real alternative but to travel to France is horrifying. Course the coastal French are said to be nicer than the Parisians, so maybe if they will great me with sufficient amounts of champagne and Catherine Deneuve I will reconsider.
6. Going to Bangkok for Loi Krathong – Aside from taking the brave public stance of deploring Thai Food, I have no desire to go to a place named Bangkok. It sounds like and accident ready to happen, festival of lights or not.
7. Riding a Ghondola in Venice – General Grant once said Venice would be a fine city if they could drain the water out of the streets. I am not with him on that, but if I am on a romantic boat ride that last thing I want in it is a leering Italian steering the vessel.
8. Watching the Swallows Return to San Juan Capistrano – Birdwatching, really?
9. Skydiving – If I am going to do anything in a plane other than trying to join the mile high club (the time by myself doesn’t apparently count) it will NOT be jumping out of the plane.
10. Learning to Salsa Dance- I am ridiculous enough without that.