Parks & Recreation – this is your influence on me

Since high school there is one piece of paper I have always been able to put my hands on.  And no, that document has not been birth certificates or a social security card, as it should be.  It’s the list of things I want to do before I died.  For the record, I don’t like the term “bucket list.”  I don’t know why, but I shall not be referring to this list as that.  And list-of-things-to-do-before-I-die is really long.  Heretofore, this shall just be known on this blog as The List.  Also not to be confused the My List, which is people I’m mad at, you know, “ooooh – the lady who hit and run my car – she’s on my list!”

Let’s move on.

Last week I’m watching Parks & Recreation, which I love, and there are April and Andy, whom I also love, trying to accomplish some things on Andy’s list.  He has some crazy things – race a rhino – and some completely doable things – fly first class and make the greatest grilled cheese sandwich.  I should add that one about first class to my list also.

This has prompted me to think about The List.  I took a picture of it.  It’s actually pretty embarrassing.  It is evident I was an over the top optimist who had a few too many Barbie commercials playing in her head in high school when I started this. (“We girls, can do anything, right, Barbie!)  I don’t think I’ll be accepting an Academy Award or figure skating with Scott Hamilton anytime soon, sorry, Barbie.  Although, now that I have The Secret mentality going for me….who knows.

Once again, I digress.

The List - handwritten

This piece of looseleaf paper is now about 16 years old.  Please note that it is front and back.  I added to it after college.  Exactly 8 things are crossed off.  Those things are: Visit Italy, drive in a convertible with the top down going very fast, be a waitress (at the time it symbolized a glamorous life of struggling in a big city on my way to making it big – and hey – it’s crossed of – don’t judge), live in Chicago, jog on the beach in the morning, see the sunset over the ocean with someone I love (I’ve always been a romantic!), swing dance with someone who knows how, jetski.

The thing that came to me during Parks & Recreation the other night is that I don’t need to have a job to do all of these.  They don’t all have to be expensive.  Or require health insurance.  April and Andy just went for it.  I can go for it.

Time for an update.  The List 2.0.  Things that will transfer from the original to the update are:

  • learn to play the violin
  • stay in a mountain lodge
  • go up in a hot air balloon
  • be invited to an inaugural ball (I’m keeping it on here.  There’s a chance.)
  • live in another country
  • read all 10 books on the best seller list
  • make a wish come true for someone through the Make a Wish foundation
  • give a speech that inspires at least one person
  • be a foster parent
  • hang glide
  • go rock climbing (mostly I just want to rappel back down the mountain)
  • see the Nevada/Arizona state line
  • visit the Grand Canyon
  • memorize two Shakespeare sonnets (I may amend this one to two poems in general)
  • make s’mores in a fireplace
  • publish a book
  • spontaneous road trip
For your own enjoyment, here are a couple that will NOT make The List 2.0.
  • Re-enact the title song scene from ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ – complete with a cop (yes, I wrote “complete with a cop”)
  • Ride a horse along the beach (a little cliche for older Sarah)
  • Fly in a bi-plane (don’t know what I was thinking)
Things I’ve done in the last few years that would have been on my list had I been updating it regularly:
  • Master apple pies
  • Make the greatest chocolate chip cookie ever
  • see Cowboy Mouth perform in New Orleans
  • go to grad school (work in progress)
  • drink a $100 bottle of wine
  • see Arcadia on Broadway
And now the fun part.  Adding the new things to The List 2.0.
  • Read Crime & Punishment
  • Eat at the French Laundry
  • Get Zumba certified
  • Visit Madrid, Spain and Montreal, Canada
  • Food & Wine festival at Epcot
  • snow skiing, as long as there is a lodge at the end of the day with whiskey.  (I could perhaps also knock off s’mores in the fireplace there!)
  • successfully  make caramel
Thanks Parks & Recreation for inspiring me.  Thanks Young Sarah for being a wild day dreamer and believing that you would be invited to an inaugural ball and present (and win) an Academy Award.  (Actually, those two would have gone hand in hand, they often get last year’s winner to be the next year’s presenter – I could have had a 2 in 1…).  Thanks to me for always holding on to the original version of this list.  This little piece of looseleaf has a lot of hope in it.
Off to find some You Tube lessons so I can learn to play the violin.
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2 thoughts on “Parks & Recreation – this is your influence on me

  1. Pingback: …and calm returns | Cake for Breakfast

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