Monday, February 01, 2010

Eleven Things Not To Do Before You Die

Some people have bucket lists of things they vow to do before they die.

I've got a list of my own: Things I will never do under any circumstance. If I ever cross one of these items off this list, I will have thoroughly failed at life and will rue my existence. And off we go:

1. Sword swallowing -- Sticking anything into your mouth that sharp that far is bad news. Find some other, less damaging ways to entertain passers by on the streets of whatever city Aladdin's from.

2. Walk on hot coals -- I don't care what kind of spiritual place you put yourself into -- extremely hot coals burn human flesh.

3. Sky diving -- I have no doubt it's fun to plunge several thousand feet from an airplane. But you know what's not so fun? Face-planting to your grisly death for no reason because your life is so disappointing that you need to go to near death experiences for entertainment value.

4. Coach the Oakland Raiders -- It will not end well. Just trust me. Al Davis be cuh-razy.

5. Let tons of bees crawl all over your face at the same time -- People who do that are just asking for it, and how can you see someone on one of those nature shows wearing a bee beard and not hope the bees are all planning for a simultaneous sting operation. Yes, I just wrote "sting operation" as a pun in a paragraph about bees. This is why the world keeps me in Tucson.

6. Sleep in a haunted house -- What is the best case scenario here? Maybe a Casper-like spirit who doesn't realize he has the supernatural capabilities of Paranormal Activity-ing your life into ruins will appear to you and give you a Sixth Sense Encyclopedia Brown riddle that you can solve and release it back into the afterlife? Maybe 1 percent of the time. The other 99, it'll be an incubus ready to release a little built-up tension on you while slamming your levitated head against the ceiling and making you hurl split pea soup.

7. Bungee jump. Once you take that leap, you're dangling above the void with complete trust that someone will rescue you. But what if they get heart attacks from the thrill of watching you do your thing and are too incapacitated to set you free? Or worse yet, what if facilitating your jump was but an elaborate prank to get you stuck there upside down forever, like what Willow did to Madmartigan?

8. Hang glide. Perhaps you're noticing a trend here, that three of the eight items thus far have to do with heights, and being terrified of them. Well, you're right in assuming that I have acrophobia. But it's not me who has the mental disorder here -- it's everyone who doesn't get jittery when there's the potential to fall from a great height. Getting back to the point, if you hang glide, you're sending out embroidered invitations for an eagle or hawk to come barreling into your little kite apparatus, spinning you into a death spiral. And failing that, when you're hang gliding I doubt you're registering with Air Traffic Control, so there's nothing preventing a Boeing 747 Airbus from barreling into you head on and redirecting your flight route, directly to the bowels of Hades.

9. File for bankruptcy. It seems great, right? You get rid of all your debt, start with a pretty much clean slate, and laugh at the poor saps who actually accept responsibility for their late night booze binges and gambling runs and work hard to pay it all off honestly. Well, you're correct that filing for bankruptcy will make all this happen for you, but you know what it will also do -- make me stop following you on Twitter. And you know you need the followers.

10. Contract herpes. No matter how happy the people in the herpes med commercials seem, you know they're hiding the existential angst of allowing themselves to get herped up in the first place. What they wouldn't give for Mr. Destiny to transport them back to high school so they could undo that hot makeout section that led to a life of cold sores. Note: I do not have herpes but laugh at people who do.

11. See your parents naked. If you're 7 and you're reading this, and you hear loud inexplicable noises coming from your parents' room, just do yourself a solid by making yourself a bowl of Cap'N Crunch and waiting for the noise to stop before unlocking the door with a toothpick and checking things out. You can thank me later.

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