Showing posts with label Bucket list. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bucket list. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

My Un-Bucket List


It seems that everyone has a bucket list these days. 

I wrote about my bucket list awhile back, but lately I have been wondering if it was very realistic, if I will ever get around to doing anything on that list.

For example, one of my goals was to live out my reality TV dream and go on "Survivor" and "Amazing Race."  What was I thinking?  "Survivor?"  Do I really want to sit around all day with a bunch of people who are plotting against me, especially when I continually lose the competitions for them?  Not to mention parading around in all manner of undress alongside young women who actually look good in bikinis?  And even if I didn't get voted out right away, the boredom would get to me first.

Or "The Amazing Race?" I don't think my marriage could withstand the tension.  I yell at Hubby as it is.  Just imagine what I would be like in a race, catching trains and planes, driving in unfamiliar countries (I am a terrible backseat driver as it is), not to mention our having to do tasks together, tasks that include repelling off of 50 story buildings, eating disgusting food, herding sheep and jumping out of planes. I can just hear myself shouting, "HUBBY, DAMMIT,

Speaking of jumping out of planes, I don't understand some of the common things you find on other people's bucket lists. 

There are some standard inclusions that make me wonder, do these people really understand what they are getting into?  Do they really want to do these things?  Would I want to do those things?

As a retired person, I am committed to not doing anything I don't want to do. It's my job.

So I have decided to compile an "Un-Bucket List," things that are common on other people's bucket lists that I do NOT want to do before I die.

1.  Climb Mount Everest.

People, did you not read "Into Thin Air" by Jon Krakauer? 

It's dangerous up there.  And it's cold and you have to carry heavy packs and sleep in tents and use god knows what kinds of outdoor toilets. And it's crowded.  It's almost like Walmart on Black Friday.  Nooooo, no, no, no.

2.  Sky-dive
What the hell?  I don't get this at all.  Jumping out of a plane 13,000 feet above the ground with nothing between you and certain death except a little thing on your back that is supposed to open when you pull the cord and save your life?  Websites advertise over a minute of freefall.  Yippee.  NOT!  I can't imagine anything scarier. Bungee jumping also falls into this category.  Doing something like this is when you have too much time on your hands.

3.  Go into space on Virgin Galactic

Let's just say that since this happened, Princess Beatrice, who was supposed to be the most famous first passenger, has given up her seat on one of the first flights. I rest my case.

4.  Participate in an Iron Man Triathlon

First of all, a marathon is bad enough.  I can't imagine running 5 miles let alone 26.  Add to that biking 100 miles and swimming.  Sounds like torture to me.  Besides, I can't swim.

5.  Learn a new language
Though this is a noble goal - I think it's terrible that Americans rarely speak a language other than English and then travel and expect people in other countries to speak English - this is something that has passed me by.  I can barely remember why I went into the kitchen let alone remember the vocabulary of another language.

6.  Join the Mile High Club
That might have been a goal in my younger years, but all I am going to say here is that airplane toilets are getting smaller and smaller.

7.  Live Abroad.
I always wanted to move to the U.K., but then life got in the way and I acquired too much crap.  Plus we had kids who had their lives and interests and would have had a fit if we had dragged them to Europe.  But even now that the kids are grown, we still have so much crap, it's difficult to conceive of moving overseas.  And we have dogs.  They don't like you to bring dogs from America to the U.K.  Our little darlings could never withstand the six months of quarantine that is required nor could I.
These pampered pets wouldn't last a week in quarantine.

8.  Swim with sharks
Are you kidding me?  Didn't you see "Jaws?"

I could go on and on.  There are people who have bucket lists with 10,000 items on them. 

I have been fortunate.  I have done many of the things that appear on people's bucket lists and that I personally wanted to do. 

I have ridden a gondola in Venice, kissed Hubby on a bridge in Paris, traveled to 20 countries, and I have lived on a canal boat in Oxford. I can play an instrument, I meditate, I volunteer, I started this blog, IMDB publishes my reviews and I have walked all 25 stair walks in Seattle.

But here is something to think about. 

Is having a bucket list a good idea? 

Doesn't having a list that includes things like staying in a hut in the Maldives, meeting Oprah Winfrey and being an extra in a movie set ourselves up for failure and possibly keep us from building a good life for ourselves with what we have now?  Does having such a list fill a void in our lives that should be filled with the here and now?  Are we all in competition?

Yes, it is good to have goals, but these lists also encourage us to live in the future and in so doing perhaps we will miss out on today.

What do you think? 

Here is further discussion on this from "The Guardian," "Bucket Lists:  Are They a Good Idea?"

Right now, I am retired and for me, retirement is all about finally doing what I want to do, not what I don't really realistically want to do, just so I can have a cool bucket list.

At this stage in my life, I have realized that I don't need adrenaline and adventure to feel alive, to feel I have lived a full life.  Now it's all about living consciously, loving my family, watching my grandchildren grow, and finding the meaning in my life. 

Oh, and watching those 1001 movies!

Do you have a bucket list?

And if so, how are you doing?

Thanks for Reading!

See you Friday
for my review of the new movie
as well as some interesting DVDs,

and an update on how I am doing

on my

 "1001 Movies I Must See Before I Die Project."
If you enjoyed this post, feel free to click on the share buttons to share it on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn, email it to your friends and LIKE me on Facebook at

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A Retired Baby Boomer Librarian's Bucket List

One dark and lonely night (we have a lot of those around here), I came upon the movie "The Bucket List."

Believe it or not, I had never heard that expression before.

A little research showed that there is not agreement on how old this phrase is. Some believe it originated with the movie. Others feel it has been around longer. But all agree, it is based on the phrase "kicking the bucket."

For those of you who haven't heard of this, the "bucket list" is that list of things you want to see or do before you "kick the bucket,"

As a retired librarian, here is my "bucket list," first from a retired librarian's point of view:

  • Before I die, I would like to see the librarian stereotype go away.

Throughout my career, when I have replied to the question about what I did for a living, I have had to hear comments like these:

"You don't look like a librarian,"


"You must read a lot of books (at work),"


(followed by chuckling because for some reason people get a kick out of themselves by saying that. I, on the other hand, do not).

Since during my career I interacted with librarians on a daily basis and saw the diversity that makes up the profession, it makes me wonder, "What is a librarian supposed to look like?"
But ask the "civilian," and nine times out of ten, you would probably hear her (librarians are stereotypically women) described as an intimidating, dowdy spinster wearing a bun and double-tread floor gripper shoes and whose only goal in life is to hush people up and be disapproving.

So my ultimate "bucket list" goal would be to see a movie starring a librarian as a sexy, superhero, flying about protecting people's free speech and right to read, pummeling censorship and basically teaching people good manners.

She is glamorous, yet practical (yes, it's a woman...we deserve superhero status), plucky (I love that word) and witty. She is also well-read (though she would never dream of reading books on the job), not just in the classics, but in popular culture as well. And she can match the "right book to the right person at the right time."

She never shushes anyone, though when battling the forces of evil, she sometimes must be blunt. As she stares down the bad guy, she says , "If you had just read that book I recommended, none of this would have happened!"

  • I would like to see libraries viewed as educational institutions instead of the often mistaken view that they are only recreational entities.

Yes, people go to libraries for recreational reading and entertainment DVDs, but libraries are so much more than that. 

Libraries and librarians are also instrumental in getting children started on the road to literacy before they enter kindergarten. They offer homework help to children and teens in school, and they are there for the adult lifelong learner who needs to learn new skills.

When the money is handed out by the powers that be or a vote is needed to support library services, it should be a no brainer that libraries are as important as schools. 

Some libraries have actually closed due to lack of financial support.

That shouldn't happen in a country where education and literacy are so prized.

  • I would like to leave this world with the knowledge that every man, woman and child not only uses the library, but knows what the library has to offer.

I have always thought that if people really knew what libraries offered, they would be pounding down the doors.

I never again want to hear someone nervously say to me, "I haven't been in a library in years" or "Why do I need the library?"

Libraries offer quality databases (and these are not the same as going on the Internet) that would help small business owners make more money, that include free online newspapers and magazines and information on a myriad of topics to help people with their research and daily lives and meeting rooms where the community can gather. Library web pages offer downloadable ebooks and other information while library programs include classes to help people with their English and computer skills, family events, I could go on and on.

All free and open to all.

But for some reason, despite hard work and attention to this, for every person who uses the library, there are many more who not only don't use the library, they have no idea what they offer.

  • In retirement, find something as meaningful to do to replace my work as a librarian: 

as meaningful as protecting your right to information, as meaningful as getting children ready for school, as meaningful as helping newcomers attain U.S. citizenship, as meaningful as providing a community gathering place for people to share their ideas openly.  Those are just some of the things librarians in public libraries do. 

That will be difficult to replace.

As a retired librarian with 40 years under my belt, those are the items on my professional "bucket list."

However,  I am also human, so I have my personal "bucket list" too.

And, as usual, I am compelled to share.

       (I know he's married but so am I!)

  •  Become a famous character actress
       (I've missed my chance to be an ingenue, I guess).

  • Write a juicy best-selling book.

  • Live my Reality TV dream. Star as "the old one" on "Big Brother" (new season premieres June 25) and win "Survivor," where I "Outwit, Outplay, and Outlast" them all wearing adorable swimsuits and cute sandals. (It's easy to lose weight on "Survivor".)

  • Find out that face lifts don't hurt
       (and I can get one for free).

  • Become fluent in Italian and drive my own boat glamourously through the canals of Venice as I head to my villa.

  • Become a YouTube star (I am sure I could think of something stupid enough to do to get myself on there), and because of it, be interviewed by Oprah who then asks me to become her best friend. And she gives me my own show.

  • Millions follow my blog
  • Move to Paris
  • Better yet, win the lottery so I could have homes in Paris, Venice, London, the English countryside, Victoria B.C, and wherever my children and grandchildren happen to be living so I can hang around them as much as I want.
Sigh. I guess those aren't very realistic - I guess that's my "dream" bucket list.
More realistically, if I can live near enough to my children that I can often enjoy them and the grandchildren, travel to Europe when I get the urge, stay well enough to bicycle in the Cotswolds, live comfortably, continue to make and keep good friends and hear more people say,
"I go to the library all of the time. I don't know what I would do without libraries."
"I think librarians are cool. You look just like one!"

Then I could die happy.

Make my day. 
Share some stories about how the library changed your life.
What's on YOUR Bucket List?

See you Friday for

"The Perfect Hotel Room"

Thanks for reading!

If you enjoyed this post, feel free to share it, email it to your friends and
LIKE me on Facebook at