A Good Week For Bucket Lists


‘When you die, you will receive total consciousness.’ So I got that goin’ for me, which is nice. ~Carl Spackler about his encounter with the Dalai Lama, “Caddyshack”

"It's in the hole! IT'S IN THE HOLE!"Before I continue, I should explain that I don't play golf, save for that strange variant with windmills and 1/6 scale Victorian houses. Never even liked it that much. Bill Murray's Carl, though, is a favorite of mine. He's a dreamer. He doesn't care that he's a degenerate pervert pyromaniac. He just is. That being said, I can identify with Carl. Not the ogling women golfers part. Carl has his goals, like winning the Masters. Even if it's one long Walter Mitty fantasy only he can see. My fantasies are a little more workable. They're not about winning an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress or hitting a home run over the Monster at Fenway in the bottom of the ninth. Nope. Like Carl, I'm a lot more blue collar. As it so happens, two of my fantasies came through in a single week. How's that for inspiration? I didn't even have to get diagnosed with some unpronounceable disease to make it happen. There's another side to all of this, too. Anything you really want is bound to be difficult. Not just that, but there's a curious blend of exhilaration and fear that goes with it. As my granddad once told me, if there's not a lot of blood, sweat or tears involved in getting something, it probably isn't worth getting. So, lemme explain a bit... The newest flight simulator...here I come?

As I already wrote, this time last week I was coming down off the high of my first flight (and flight lesson) in a small aircraft. I’m addicted and I want more. When I consider a pilot’s license costs about the same amount as a master’s degree might, I’m even more intrigued. God, or the universe, has been sending me a lot of nudge-nudge, wink-winks as of late. There was the ad in the paper for my local airport’s installation of a new flight simulator. My friendship with several fellow aviation junkies. My uncle who just happens to be a licensed pilot. I believe things happen for a reason. Maybe that reason is me eventually getting my license. I’m older than most who start out, but I’m in good health, so why not? People have done crazier 180-degree turns later in life before. And I love the idea, and the freedom, associated with being a pilot.

Bucket List item #971, as it turned out, happened this evening. I got the opportunity to call in to a radio show guest-hosted by one of my favorite, and most-admired, public figures (Dwight Schultz, best known as The A-Team’s  Murdock.) Yes, I was terrified. Yes, my hands were shaking and my voice was trembling. Yes, I had to wait an agonizing hour, just like Space Mountain at Disney World. The payoff was a couple minutes long. But, just like any thrill ride, it was worth it. At the end I had that crazy “runner’s high” because I knew I’d accomplished something. More importantly, I’d conquered my fear, if just for a few minutes.

I’d encourage everyone I know to try and cross a few items off their personal Bucket Lists. Yeah, it’s probably going to scare the hell out of you. If the big stuff (meeting your favorite sci-fi star, riding an elephant in Thailand, competing in a local 5K) is too much, start with something small. Call an old friend with whom you’ve lost contact. Write a letter for a cause you support. Jump off the high dive at your Y’s pool. With each step comes more courage. The more you think you can do, the more you CAN do. Then, maybe you’ll get to cross more items off that list.

As for me, I’m still a humble greenskeeper in spirit who keeps on keeping on. I may never get to wear that green jacket at Augusta, but I have the rest of my life to try. My only suggestion would be to duck if you’re ever out at the practice range with me…my 7-iron tends to go much farther than the ball. Put me down for a double bogey.

My idea of a good time golfing

Enjoyed this post? Be sure to click ‘Like’ and subscribe to P&Q! Got comments or questions? Send ’em to wikusandmurdock@yahoo.com!

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~ by Howlin' Mad Heather on August 13, 2011.

One Response to “A Good Week For Bucket Lists”

  1. Aww I’m so happy you got to speak to Dwight. Yaay! I should probably make my own bucket list actually XD

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