A Life Less Ordinary. . .

   So, if you’ve been following me on Twitter, you know that I recently got what I call “sexy cable.” This is the special stuff with the On Demand and HBO. Am I happy? Yes. Am I upset that I got HBO when there’s no new episodes of True Blood? Yes, but that’s not the point here.

   I recently started watching “The Buried Life” on MTV. It might be one of the best programs that MTV has put on in recent years (And “The World Of Jenks”). Yes, that’s what I said. The premise is basically 4 20-something year old guys make a bucket list and drive around the US in a bus trying to cross everything off. For everything that they accomplish for themselves, they do something for someone else. I’d seen episodes before, but since I have On Demand, I watched some episodes again. They’d hosted the most badass party (#85), tried to play basketball with the President (#95) and told a joke on late night television (I forgot the number). At the end of each show, they ask “what do you want to do before you die?” I would be lying if I said that the show didn’t get me all inspired.

     I try to start off each day with a to-do list. It helps keep me focused (for the most part) and I get a sense of accomplishment when I cross things off. It’s a good feeling. Like my day wasn’t a complete waste of time (and oxygen.) Why wouldn’t I have a list for my life? I’ve had a list for a while now, but looking at the list that these guys put together, I decided to get a little more detailed. Trust me, this is not the complete list. I think I’m just giving the ones that mean the most to me.

    Before I die, I want to:

   1. Go skinnydipping: I don’t mean, “take off my bathing suit in the ocean, then put it back on.” I mean, a buck nekkid skinnydip. I like the feeling of nature against my skin. I want to bask in the feeling of just me, and take in the feeling of water engulfing every pore. I can’t explain it. If you can’t imagine it, then that’s fine.

   2. Go zip lining through the rainforest:

That's gonna be ME!

      I once saw a picture of a little child in National Geographic. He was in a basket on a zip line. This was the way that the children got to school. That was the only thing I remember about the whole article. Zip Lining has been stuck in my head ever since. I know it looks crazy, but I’m not sure I can think of a greater feeling that being up in the sky with trees brushing past your face. (Yes, this is what I think about.)

   3. Build a house for the homeless:  Homeless people break my heart. I haven’t figured out the logistics yet, but I often hear that the problem with a homeless person finding a job is that they don’t have an address. I want to build a house. (we’ll start with one) Have them work the property (cook, gardener etc.) and for the others that live there, they can use the house as an address. Go to work, and pay a reduced rent. I’ll have a psychologist on staff. (because being homeless must take a toll on the psyche) I’m not saying we’ll all live happily ever after, but maybe I can be one person that starts a solution. Maybe it can work.

   4. Get published: It has been my dream to be published. I’m not sure I can write a “Grapes of Wrath,” or “Moby Dick” and since I don’t like to put out anything unless I’m sure it’s my best, I’ve been stalling on it for forever. I have the first 15 pages of something and everytime I look at it, I mark it up with red ink and toss it to the side. “It reads so immature, look at all the inconsistencies.” It took me more than 2 years to start this blog. I didn’t feel like I could make it perfect, so I stalled on making it happen. BUT, I once heard something that stayed with me, “Fear is the greatest anchor that will stifle your potential.” (or something like that) I guess I have to start living that way.

  5. See the Sistine Chapel: This one is easy, I just have to get to Italy. I remember studying Italy in my western civ class and that was THEE place I knew my european tour would start once my shackles came off. I have to see it. That’s all there is to it. I don’t often see things that take my breath away, and I think this will do the trick.

    That’s the first 5 on my list. I realize that some might have to take a backseat, but I don’t want to die without getting one of them done. I watch my family go through life, a mundane life that never changes. I don’t want that to be me. I don’t mean to be all morbid on a Wednesday, but we all know that one day our number will be up.
          What do you want to do before you die?

    Peace and Love, Nick
(The title is a song by Carbon Leaf, look it up..)

26 Responses to “A Life Less Ordinary. . .”
  1. The World of Jenks is a great show. I dislike Maino even more because of it. The eps with the autistic kid and the MMA fighter were good.

    My bucket list is as follows:

    1. Sky-diving. The idea of jumping out of a perfectly good aircraft always seemed fun.
    2. Getting published is on my list too. After reading some really bad fiction I’m convinced that I can do a lot better. ***Side note*** I seriously do not want my novel stuck in the AA section of the book store. I hate being marginalized
    3. Learn multiple languages. First I want to defeat my old enemy French, and then move on to German, or Arabic.
    4. I want to fix my home town of Allendale County, SC. Easier said than done in these trying times, but how do you repair an non-functioning economy as well as repair the cultural terrain.
    5. Deal with my bouts of depression once and for all. Most of the time my bouts are brief, but that’s not good enough. “Not being myself today” isn’t even if it’s only for one day just ain’t working for the kid.
    6. Visit every continent. The world’s huge and I want to see it all.

    Great post Nick!

    • nicknotnikki says:

      I have issues with French. We were alright for a minute, but conjugating verbs is NOT the business.. (Max knows french, I don’t like her because of this..)
      My mother knows German (the little she remembers) I can’t get with it, because almost everything sounds like someone is having a throat condition..
      I do have Hindi on my list though. I know some, and know this one song that I perform for my mother around dinnertime.. (it makes her smile)
      I’m glad you want to deal with your depression. My friend suffers from it and doesn’t take the medication (sigh)..
      I can’t co-sign all the continents because Antarctica is one of them.. It’s 70-something degrees outside right now and I’m chilly.. In sweatpants and whatnot.. I’m not built for cold..
      I thought about skydiving too. It’s on my list too.

  2. max says:

    I like your list Nickerz. Except for zip lining. That’s just crazy.

    I have a list for myself but I never ever tell anyone what’s on it. Gloria Vanderbilt said “You must always have great, secret, big fat hopes for yourself in love and in life.” so I keep mine close.

    Seriously – don’t do the zip lining. It scares me!

  3. LaBakir says:

    @Wu…I dislike Maino more now as well. I will have to catch up on these two shows this week…thank goodness for On Demand.

    – Visit all 7 contients

    – Go away to India and live at a meditation camp. I’d really like to get a hang of meditation.

    – Fire a gun

    – Help someone get through college or achieve their dream

    – Do a photoshoot

    – Live in California…even if it’s just bi-coastal

    • nicknotnikki says:

      I’ve wanted to visit India.. being that I don’t too much like people, it holds me back. But I MUST get some fabric, and see the palaces. I don’t know about that meditation though. I have a hard enough time quieting my mind while I’m praying.
      I want to shoot a gun, but I’m scared of the recoil.

      • LaBakir says:

        I have a heard time too. But it’s not impossible. Meditation is a little more difficult b/c your “supposed” to be listening to God, and prayer you’re talking to him.

        Aww don’t be scurred! Eff a recoil!

    • nicknotnikki says:

      I can remember the first time I was able to actually mame my mind go quiet.. Blank and nothingness.. It was one of the most sublime moments of my life..

  4. 1)Write a joke that is used on one of the major late-night talk shows.

    2)Publish a graphic novel and/or webcomic.

    3)Piss on The Alamo.

    4)Get banned from a city/state/country.

    5)Get over my stage fright, and experiment with Improv.

    • nicknotnikki says:

      why are you pissing on the Alamo exactly?

      • I would lie, and say pissing on it would be a political statement about the ungratefulness of the founders of Texas and my disdain for Death cults. The real reasons are that I like peeing on walls; it is the project kid in me. Also Ozzy Osborne did it. Which led to him getting banned from San Antonio. I could knock two entries of my bucket list at once.

  5. BP says:

    Every year I tackle a bucket list item or two. This year its going to Europe ( Paris/London) ( I leave next Friday).

    Other items are:

    1) Skydiving. I was supposed to go labor day weekend but plans were changed.

    2) Work at a clinic or orphanage in Africa.

    3) Meet Maya Angelou. I.adore.her.

    4)Scuba Dive in Australia or some where with a great barrier reef.

    5) Surf in a warm tropical location.

    Good post! Responding took me to a happier place.

    • nicknotnikki says:

      I won’t even tackle the fact that I’m jealous of your European trip.. That’s alright though, I’ll be there next year.
      Go easy with that Australia business, I watched a special about the smallest, most-poisonous jellyfish over there.. (was that Australia?) YES, I think it was..
      Learning how to surf is on my list too.. Hopefully when I visit my family in Jamaica, I can do it over there.. I don’t know what the waves will be like though.. Hmm..
      Have a GREAT TRIP!!! send me pics when you get back..

      • BP says:

        Thank you! I promise to bring back lots of pics to share…the 15th can’t get here soon enough. Oh and surfing in Ja sounds like the bomb.com!

  6. CHeeKZ Money says:

    Love your topics:

    I want to do everyone’s list. Awesome ideas, that if I ever make something out of myself, I would want to do all those things. We should all go skydiving together… or atleast skinning dipping. In warm water though, I’m not trying to get laughed at. Nick will have me out there looking like a paperclip wrapped in brown plastic.

    I could have a million things. But I will just go with one: Help find a cure for Cancer. My sister died of a tumor in her leg when she was eight. Completely ruined my mother’s life, marriage, and ability to love. Since than I have lost countless people close to us to the diease. My mother always pushed me to be a doctor. I always thought it was b/c it was the Haitian thing to do. I rejected it b/c i’m CHeeKZ and I reject society’s standards (plus who wants to work those long hours). Turns out she wanted me to be an oncologist. She said “How can you have the ability to stop the pain we have gone thru to happen to anyone else and not stop it.” There is more than one way to skin a cat. So I still want to be a part of the solution.

    • LaBakir says:

      Wow…CHeeKZ…you have me e-speechless

    • nicknotnikki says:

      Wow CHeeKZ..
      I don’t want to say anything cliche’ (I hate cliche’s) but I feel like I’ve exhausted my “Wow” limits for one day..
      Thank you for being so open CHeeKZ.. I wasn’t expecting it..
      Just…. wow..

      and don’t tell me we should all go skydiving or something because the suggestion will lodge itself in my brain and I’ll try to make it happen..

    • BP says:

      CheeKz late one night recently my play sister and I were laying up in her bed talking about the evilness of cancer. We know so many that it has affected. I can’t tell you how much your comment touched me, I am sorry so for your lost.

      Oh a happier note @ you, Nick and anyone else who has the cajones……..lets go sky diving!

  7. Capricorn says:

    having just lost a cousin to cancer (lung, then brain) I am with Cheeksz.

    1. Get off my azz and go to grad school and get over my fear of failure/rejection/success.
    2. Go back to Spain.
    3. See the Great Barrier Reef.
    4. Drive on the Autobahn.
    5. Lose my shyness. I am NOTORIOUSLY shy and wish I could change that about myself.
    6. See the Grand Canyon
    7. Meet some of these ppl whose blogs I read daily.
    8. Tell that one person EXACTLY how I feel about him, instead of just pretending he no longer exists.
    9. Play the lottery and win some real money.
    10. get my credit back in order.. lol

    • nicknotnikki says:

      Go “back” to Spain? How was it!? well, i can assume it was great since you wanna go back.. (unless you’re a sadist)
      I think that whole “tell him how I feel” is one of the biggest ones. I’m not gonna try and pump you full of motivation, but the payoff could be SO grand..
      that’s all I’ma say about that.. before I turn into Oprah round this piece.. (and I can’t deal with Oprah)
      I can’t get with the Autobahn.. you can let me know how it goes!

      • Capricorn says:

        I went to Spain in HS and LOVED LOVED LOVED it. Even though I was in HS, I’m sure I was propositioned. lol!!

        *le sigh* that’s a long complicated history betwixt him and me. *le sigh again*
        (girl, I cant deal with her either)

        I have a thing with BMWs (the cars, especially, lol) and the fastness of it all. 🙂

  8. MsEsquire77 says:

    I have a long list of must-dos/sees but here are a few:

    1) Travel the world, especially Belize, Australia and Egypt.

    2) Master ASL. I suck at spoken languages and think ASL is beautiful.

    3) Learn to box and fence.

    4) Perform in a musical, specifically “Little Shop of Horrors”.

    FYI: I went sky-diving on 7/7/07 and it was easily the MOST awesome thing I’ve ever done in my life. I’d love to do it again.

    Also, if you’re looking for inspiration I’d suggest picking up a copy of “The Wish List”. It’s a long checklist of randomly cool stuff.

  9. keisha brown says:

    love this post!!!

    1. see paris. i studied french my whole life (french immersion from kindergarden to last yr of HS). so speaking the language my mom made me learn and eating lots of bread and cheese IS A MUST
    (fyi: yes.. there are TOO many damn ways to conjugate a verb in french.)
    2. volunteer with habitat for humanity
    3. start a foundation or scholarship fund
    4. do a major event – NFL, ESPN, OSCAR, GG, Oscar’s Legend Ball
    5. learn to drive. yeah. i know. *drops head in shame

    I got more, but would need to go get my life plan/vision board. and im lazy.

  10. AB says:

    This post was so uplifting, it actually inspired me to become a member of WordPress. Ive always had a itch for writing something substantial in book form about my life, as I keep telling myself I’ve been through it all.
    I had to contribute:

    1. Become a firefighter. (lifelong dream ever since I lit my Nona’s bed on fire)

    2. Save a human being’s life. (whether it be pull him/her from a burning car or perform CPR. The whole cat thing just doesn’t cut it)

    3. Write an autobiography

    4. Learn Italian and Greek fluently (I have a cultural advantage)

    5. Help build a school, hospital, library in an underprivelaged country.

    Thanks for that inspiring blog.

    • nicknotnikki says:

      I’m glad you liked it.. and thank you for commenting!!

      You want to save someone’s life, that’s very admirable.. My CPR dummy died.. I’ve been scarred ever since.. I hope you write, and keep writing.. and never stop..

      Peace and Love, Nick

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