Since I’m older than the hills, I’m expected to have a bucket list. I actually did have one, but it was getting shorter every year (being launched into orbit voluntarily is looking less likely as time goes by), until at last, I tossed the whole thing. Instead, I have some vague plans for fun travel, a hope to try that weird berry that makes lemons taste like cantaloupe, maybe a cruise that doesn’t involve open sewage, and this blog.
A bucket list is supposed to be all those things you want to do before you kick the bucket. It occurred to me that a more useful kind of list would be a young bucket list, or yucket list for short. This is a list of things you should do while you are young – preferably under 30, but you can fudge the numbers a bit. No one is counting.
Armed with this brilliant idea, and sobered somewhat by the fact my Yucket List days are over, I ran off to Google (sorry, Famous Search Engine since you’re not supposed to mention Google by name) and took a look. Because this is such a good idea, lots of blogs have addressed it already, and several have overlapping ideas, such as the astounding proposition that you should “love yourself”.
It went downhill from there. Most sounded just like your mother in Yenta Mode (“Don’t neglect your health!” “Save your money!” “You should get out more!”) Most of those tips were in the “you should try not to poke yourself in the eye” category of advice. Others were in the “eat right and exercise every day” group: good advice in theory, certainly. Yet others were perfect for the risk-averse: these are also good in theory, but in practice would probably rob you of any vestiges of personality in no time flat.
So, I have helpfully compiled a more interesting list. Make sure these are on your own personal Yucket List. If you are old like me, you’ve probably crossed them all off your list already. In that case, may I suggest taking up a time-consuming handicraft, and possibly splurging on a nice bottle of wine?
So, while you’re young…
Seven Items on The Yucket List
Take some nude photos. Get these done as soon as you can. Don’t wait until you look perfect, just get your boy/girlfriend/roommate to shoot them with YOUR phone and then make sure you don’t post them publically. Keep ‘em safe. You’ll be glad you did.
Go on a drunken binge. You only have a narrow window of opportunity here – between graduation and your first job. Alcohol is dangerous (as are all drugs), so don’t get killed. Still, Katy Perry seems to know what she’s talking about in Last Friday Night.
Burn a bridge. This is a bad thing to do, so do it once just to see what it feels like. Tell that annoying friend exactly what you think of him or her. Stand up to someone you don’t like. Skip an important meeting or party with no explanation. Tell your nosy neighbor to mind their own beeswax. Have your roommate call your soon-to-be-ex boss to say “she left the country last night” and never go back to that hateful job. (I actually did this once. My ex-boss actually hopped a cab and showed up at my apartment. Within 5 minutes, everyone from the building super to my suddenly-former colleagues knew the story).
Bum Around. Take a few months off and see the world. Save up your cash, then get on a greyhound to Carlsbad Caverns. Backpack around Europe and just be a famous artist. Join an eco-living colony in Hawaii where you have to grow your own pineapples. Camp overnight at Machu Picchu.
Perform in public. Give a speech, get a part in a play, run a conference.
Go skydiving, bungee jumping, hang gliding, or whatever has been invented to allow you to fall from a great height in relative safety. After doing some public speaking, this should be a breeze.
Challenge a phobia. Put your hand in a box of worms. Get locked in a closet for 10 minutes by someone you trust. If you can do it, you’ll feel great. If you can’t, don’t beat yourself up. Just give up and never look back. (Note — if this one backfires, you could be creating a phobia instead of challenging one.)
Dance like a maniac. Who cares what you look like? Go to a club or try something free and outdoors. Take a friend or find a partner there. Take a class or just jump right in.
You’ll be glad you did.