101 Things to do Before You Die #1: Ignore Those Books
Welcome to Leila Johnston's new weekly column, which as you'll find out will quickly become vital reading for anyone planning to 'do things' during their lifetime.
Yes, if you're in need of a new list to tick off before you pop off, you've come to the right place, so read on...
First off, here's an interactive introduction: follow the on screen instructions to get travel tips before you die:
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Animation by Le Singe Media
There's so much to do before Death, that grim mystery shopper, enters our world expecting to be greeted within 30 seconds. Before Death, that least popular Barbie, rides into our doll’s house for one last make-over. To help us narrow it down, there are plenty of books around listing things to do, or places to go, before you die.
These lists are always aspirational – yuppie holiday ideas in disguise. Where are the ideas for normal folk with normal problems? Where’s '101 places to leave a tea bag before you die'? Where's '101 things to do before you attempt to apply for Jobseeker's Allowance via their website?' What about all the thrilling, but achievable suggestions like 'Tron wheelbarrow racing' or 'Draw on a guide dog'?
Bridge jumps, balloon rides, mountain climbing, Peru... The things you’re supposed to do are all about height, or ancient monuments, or both. We have only a short while as stewards of this Earth; I can be bored or high up at home.
So what do we really want to do before our time comes? Personally, I want to try out defibrillators, walk down train tracks, get stuck in a lift, order a 'usual' and call a stranger 'darling'. Being sick in the toilet at work, not abseiling, is the mark of a full life. Prolong your time on Earth with adventure and green tea by all means, but trust me - you’ll only waste the extra minutes looking for places to stash the sodden tea bags afterwards. Until someone comes up with a list for that, of course.
101 Things to do Before You Die will continue next week. In the meantime, why not leave your own suggestions in the comments below?