August 10, 2003

Things to do in Denver before you're dead

I've never beat up on Stephen Green. It's time.

Why do people make lists like this? Let's look this over:

Slum through Europe

No thanks. I'd rather four-star-hotel through Europe.

Skydive solo without a static line

Skydive without a parachute. Now that would be a thrill.

Drink your age in Jell-O shots*

Yuck. No. I hate those noxious things, and drunkenness ceased to be amusing for me about fifteen years ago.

Own a classic convertible*

That would be nice.

Total said convertible, walk away, and laugh*

That would really piss me off. No thanks.

Buy a bottle of the real Absinthe

See about drunkenness above. I also hear that this stuff tastes like ass, and life really is too short to spend money on stuff that tastes like ass.

Pilot an airplane

No thank you.

Change careers*

Since I don't have one, that won't be difficult.

Walk the Golden Gate Bridge*

What's with all this stuff to do in midair? No. Thank you.

Have sex in public without getting caught*

Ummmm... no. Not even with Elijah Wood. Not even if he asked us nicely.

Get caught

No asterisk? (These denote things Stephen has already done.) Shyeah, right.

Do something regrettable in Vegas*

I don't even want to do something I'd be proud of in Vegas. I don't want to go to Vegas. As a destination, Las Vegas ranks for me somewhere behind Ulan Bator. In fact, I'd much rather visit Ulan Bator.

Fail completely at something big*

I'm sure I could do that with no trouble, but I am not sure why this is on a list of things one should do. To each their own.

Succeed at something even bigger*

That would be nice.

Make a pass at a clergyman or woman

Um -- no. Just.... no.

Have kids and love them to death

"Are there any women in the audience who aren't turned into bundles of mush by the cuteness of this?" (Raises hand.) No thanks.

Change a stranger's flat tire

Can I let the air out of their tires first?

Join an improv comedy troupe*

I thought I was a comedy troupe.

Build a fort*

Only if I can have a moat filled with alligators, and real artillery emplacements.

Ride in a hot air balloon

Again with the high-up-in-the-air stuff. Look, I'm acrophobic. No.

Spend a day at a spa

Let me tell you how I fucking hate beauty salons, and people "tending" to me, and being touched and massaged by strangers, and having to spend an entire day anywhere (unless it is in front of my computer with the coffee machine nearby).

Sneak into a movie*

I've done it. The movie sucked too. Yay, big thrill, now I can die.

Have a drink thrown in your face*

Huh? Masochism now. And he doesn't follow that with "beat to a pulp the bitch who does that" so, no thanks.

Jump in a river/lake/ocean fully dressed*

Er. No.

Win over a hostile crowd*

I'd rather send them into a panicked run.

Spend a summer as a Renaissance Fair geek

Oh right. Spend an entire summer, which in most of the continental US is usually scorchingly hot and humid, walking around outdoors dressed in heavy long dresses with my bosom squeezed up. No.

Drive from coast to coast

Okay, this I'd like to do.

Laugh because it hurts*

Only if it's because I'm hurting someone else.

Eat at a diner called "Mom's"

Sure, why not.

Look for buried treasure

Been there, done that, got sand in my crack, found no treasure. It's not fun, and if you are one of the unlucky people who actually finds a sunken stash of pirate loot, the tax regulations will make you wish you had died before fulfilling this requirement.

Learn how to paint

I already have. Yay me, I've lived!

Comfort someone who is dying*

Don't ask them if they've done any of these things.

Commit all seven deadly sins in one afternoon*

I can handle gluttony and sloth, but the others involve either effort or (like adultery) close contact with other people, so, no thanks.

Take ballroom dance lessons

See above about other people. No.

Smack Carson Daly with a brick

That would involve having to be in the same room with Carson Daly. No.

Buy a $500 bottle of wine

Only if I have somehow come into enough money to make $500 seem like pocket change.

Drink a $500 bottle of wine*

Sure, if someone else buys.

Roll down a hill of freshly-cut grass*

There are no hills where I live.

As an adult*

So much for the hard-won dignity of adulthood.

Pilfer office supplies*

I still need to keep my job. No.

Get a pedicure


See a movie at a drive-in*

I rarely see movies as it is, and I prefer the comfort of my own home, dvd player, and coffee machine.

Get a tattoo in the Philippines

No... what the fuck?

50 over the posted limit*

I drive a rice-burner, and this speed thing seems to be a guy thing anyway, so I'll pass.

Do something gentlemanly for a hooker*

This does not at all apply to me, and anyway -- dude, TMI. And pretentious.

Eat all the green M&Ms

Yeah, okay, whatever...

Abuse your authority

I don't have any, but I really don't think that this would be something I'd be into. It would sort of invalidate (at least in my own mind) any complaints about authority abusing me, so, no thanks.

Be subpoenaed by Congress

I don't want to. How's about that?

Try for four in one night after age 30*

This would seem to refer to the sort of activity that involves more than one person, so, no thank you.

Sleep in until at least Tuesday*

I get a backache if I stay in bed too long.

Update: WWAD? (What Would Australians Do?)

Posted by Andrea Harris at August 10, 2003 02:09 PM

I was asked this morning to comment on that list. Of it all, I'd done two things: rolled down a grassy hill. As an adult.

None of the rest look likely.

Posted by: marc at August 10, 2003 at 03:34 PM

I am so far behind on this list that I may never die.


Posted by: David Strain at August 10, 2003 at 09:37 PM

I think my problems with lists like that is that the whole concept gets my back up. "50 Things to do Before You Die"--who says I have to do these things? What if I want to do 3500 other things that aren't on that list instead? If Green had categories on his posts, this would have to be filed under, "One for the VP Fanboys." I like his political posts well enough most of the time, but the lists--ah, no.

Posted by: ilyka at August 10, 2003 at 09:55 PM

People who make lists need to loosen up, dude!

Posted by: Dave at August 10, 2003 at 09:55 PM

Last Fourth of July, my friend joined her daughter in rolling down a hill before the fireworks. And aggravated her whiplash.

I was snarky. I laughed.

That list is kinda dumb. I mean, admitting he can't get it up four times in one night after age 30? Yikes. Cut down on the vodka, dude.

Posted by: Meryl Yourish at August 10, 2003 at 09:55 PM

Andrea, thank you for "fisking" this mostly silly list. Your responses are spot-on.

Posted by: David at August 10, 2003 at 09:57 PM

Eat at a diner called "Mom's"

Damon Runyon, or maybe Ring Lardner, used to list that as one of three things never to do.

The other two being:

2) Never play poker with a guy called 'Doc'; and

3) Never sleep with a woman whose troubles are worse than your own.

Posted by: Wild Bill at August 10, 2003 at 10:51 PM

ONE Thing NOT to Do Before You Die:

I like my list better. Less wasted server space, less wasted bandwidth. And most important, less waste of my time writing it, and less waste of your time reading it.

Everybody wins.

Posted by: McGehee at August 10, 2003 at 11:41 PM

I think it was Nelson Algren, and #2 was, "Don't play pool with a guy named Pops".

I am told that the only Filipinos who get tattoos in the Philippines are members of the military and criminals.

If I came into my house with a tattoo that I had done, my wife would ask me which branch of the service I'd just joined, and I'd get thrown out as soon it was established that I had no active connection to any military organization. She's from the western part of Luzon, and tells me strange and facinating tales of life in the tropics.

Posted by: Dark Avenger at August 11, 2003 at 04:03 AM

I found the list interesting and rather tame. I was thinking of posting an addendum with a few more interesting things I have thought of to do.

Posted by: Andrew Ian Dodge at August 11, 2003 at 10:24 AM

Abuse your authority? Hmmm, I've never heard it called that before.

Posted by: charles austin at August 11, 2003 at 04:55 PM

Much better to list the things you'd really like to do, if you could (but are unlikely ever to be able to).

Like this one.

Posted by: Kim du Toit at August 11, 2003 at 05:22 PM

I like lists like that. They're an insight into the character of the person making the list.

By the way, I once did a gentlemanly thing for a hooker. She was cold and had lost her ride, and needed someone to get her home.

Uh, no, I never used her services, because I don't do that. I don't even like strip clubs, and find the concept of paying for sex so revolting I'd never do it.

Just so you know. ;-)

Posted by: Dean Esmay at August 12, 2003 at 04:41 AM

You're lucky she didn't knife you and steal your wallet.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at August 12, 2003 at 05:47 AM

Lists like this are great.

Make your list,

Avoid doing those things,

Don't die,

Do everything else.

Simple, really.

Posted by: jack at August 12, 2003 at 02:51 PM

Actually, I adore the taste of absinthe. It is like anisette, but subtle, smooth, and sweet without being cloying. I have been thinking about buying a bottle of Pernot, which is supposed to match the taste but not the effect.

Posted by: triticale at August 13, 2003 at 08:12 AM

I hate anisette and anything that tastes like it.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at August 16, 2003 at 09:32 AM