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Our Crack Tongue & Groove

bucketlist.jpg Bucket List? Bugger off!

Bucket Lists – those checklists of stuff you supposedly have to do before you die – really are beyond the pale. (Or, seeing as it’s a Bucket List, beyond the pail…)

What’s up with Bucket Lists? I cannot stand them. I don’t even like people who use the phrase ‘Bucket List’. “Oh yeah,” you hear them saying, “that is on my Bucket List”. That, invariably, is the kind of activity that any normal person would contemplate if the only other alternative was death. Abseiling down a waterfall, for instance. I’ve heard about people doing that. But dear god! I’d no sooner interfere with a waterfall than I would wrestle a leopard.

The whole idea of having a ‘Things To Do Before You Die’ list seems wholly ridiculous to me; an artificial construct designed to inject some excitement into the lives of the terminally lame. I wouldn’t mind so much if these people chose things that were in any way interesting, but their lists always correspond to the (made-up) list that I carry around in my head titled ‘Things I Wouldn’t Do For A Massive Gold Clock’. Swimming with sharks. No. Bungee jumping off the highest bridge in Australia. No. Walking barefoot over burning hot coals. No.

And I hate the way that these activities manage to conflate danger with unoriginality. Any excitement you feel when attempting this stuff must surely be cancelled out by the notion that a million other dullards have had exactly the same idea. If you must get your kicks by putting yourself in personal danger then at least try to make it novel: 1. Call a polar bear a vegetarian to its face. 2. To the best of your abilities live the life of a dormouse for a whole year. 3. Join some modern day pirates and set up a Glee Club among their ranks.

Another terrible thing about Bucket Lists is that they are yet another To Do list. I’ve already got loads of those, certainly too many to add another featuring spurious reams of nonsense involving dolphins and hot air balloons. I am, however, all for retro-fitting my Bucket List, which basically means crossing off stuff I’ve already completed by accident rather than design: 1. Wear a woman’s headscarf while drunk. Tick. 2. Beat the all-comers record for stuffing glass ashtrays down my underpants while stood on a table in a pub. Tick. 3. Get arrested. Tick.

No, if you must have a Bucket List, then at least, at the very least, wait until the new year and call it by its proper name: New Year’s Resolutions. A least that way you can abandon them before January is out.