Saturday, 21 February 2015

My Anti-Bucket List

Following on from my last post listing five things I would really like to do before I die (and preferably in the near-ish future!) I now bring you the Anti-Bucket List: five things I intend never to do.

The Anti-Bucket List

Climb Mount Everest (or even Mont Blanc):  It's not that I don't understand the urge to be on top of the world, or on top of Europe, but the fact that so many people climb these mountains only for that reason really puts me off. The idea of stepping over dead bodies on the way up, or even acting like Parisians in the metro in order to secure a camping spot (as apparently happens on Mont Blanc) is a complete anathema to the way that I think people should behave in the mountains. I've been up Beinn Nevis, the highest mountain in the UK three times and the third time, I swore it would be the last because the sight of people smoking and drinking beers at the summit and then throwing their rubbish on the ground was so horrible. Plus, highest does not mean most beautiful, and chasing after statistics often results in missing the best bits.

Get a Tattoo: I don't hate tattoos on other people, but I'm really squeamish about the idea of ink on my skin, never mind underneath it. In primary school, I once passed out because we went on a visit somewhere and had to get a stamp on our hands, and I've never been one of these people that can write notes to themselves on their hands. I guess I'll just need to find another way to rebel if I ever have a mid-life crisis.

Be an Olympic Figure Skater: This was my childhood/teenage dream, but I started too late and wasn't nearly talented enough even to get very far at club level. At the time, it was heartbreaking, but looking back, I'm proud that I worked so hard to at least be as good as I could be. It's funny to think that even if I had succeeded, my career would be coming to an end now anyway. I sometimes wish I could go and skate like I used to, on an empty ice-rink, just for the pleasure of it, but I don't miss the bruises, the frustration and the early rises!

Smoke: Apart from the obvious reasons not to, I also know that if I ever did start smoking, I probably wouldn't have the willpower to give up. I'm a very driven person when it comes to working towards my goals (see the bit about figure skating), but when it comes to not doing things, I have zero self discipline. (This theory has mainly been tested with chocolate so far.) Plus, I've always thought that if I was going to do something that dangerous, I'd want it to be a bit more exciting than smoking. Weirdly enough, though, although I've never touched tobacco, I have had dreams about being a smoker and not being able to give up, which I suppose is a good warning to bear in mind.

Read The Lord of the Rings Trilogy: I gave up on The Hobbit and have slept my way through two of the films, so it's not looking likely. I suspect the same probably applies to the Star Wars films. I have read the whole of Les Misérables in the original, though, which I think crowns both of the others as an achievement.


  1. I'm with you on all of them but, ahem, the smoking. Let's just say it was in my French genes.

    I brought the LOTR trilogy on a trip to New Zealand in 2003, I thought it was the perfect book for a long trip in "Middle Earth". Couldn't go past page... 50? So many footnotes... and I ain't fluent in Elf language. I find the idea of the books fascinating and he was a great writer. It's just... not for me.

  2. I have Les Mis on my bookshelf. It has been there for some months...maybe this will be the year I read it? I totally get you on the mountain thing. It is like some people do things just to say they have done it and I don't feel that need so much. And re: the figure skater thing. It is very heart breaking when you realise you aren't a genius in a certain area, just talented :p