Friar’s Never-to-Do List
If the intricacies of life are compared to a palette of subtle tones, my Dad tended to paint in black or white. He gave fair praise when fair praise was due. But if he didn’t like something, he would be sure let the world know what he thought, and in no uncertain terms.
One of his favorite expressions was “Never in my whole life…“.
As in “Never in my whole life would I pay money to go see that movie!”. Or “Never in my whole life would I buy a water bed!“. He had quite an extensive list of things he’d never do in his whole life. He rarely sat on the fence with his opinions.
My Dad sadly passed away two years ago, on this weekend. In his memory (and because I am my Father’s Son), I’d like to add my own list of things I’d never do…
…never in my whole life!
I will NEVER IN MY WHOLE LIFE…go see a Celine Dion concert.
Yes, I realize this is heresy. Okay, okay…I know…Celine has a wonderful voice…everyone loves her and yes…if you hear her in person, it’s supposed to give you goose bumps.
But I don’t give a flying fox. I despise listening to that caterwauling scarecrow with the huge ego. If I had my druthers, I’d rather go see Yoko Ono. (At least with Yoko, I would have a good laugh!)
If I was in Vegas and someone gave me free passes to see Celine, I’d stand outside the door, scalp the tickets and pocket the cash. And then blow it on Keno.
I will NEVER IN MY WHOLE LIFE…become a vegetarian.
Not even for a hot-looking Amazon D-Cup nymphomaniac girlfriend. Nope. Ain’t gonna happen. I like red meat too much.
Like a dog who occasionally eats grass, I have been known to nibble on greens. And I will humor the cook and eat vegetarian dishes that are put in front of me. I have no problems eating rabbit food…just not all the time, and not without any other side dishes (like bacon, for example).
I will NEVER IN MY WHOLE LIFE…get my face pierced.
If people want do that, fine. But it’s just not me. I have zero interest in putting metal ingots in my head. Especially multiple piercings (like the record-store refugee who has so many rings in their eyebrows, that you feel you should install a metal rod and hang a shower curtain).
One of my favorite cartoon characters, Hank Hill (from King of the Hill ) summed it up perfectly:
“I think body piercing’s a good thing. It gives us a quick way to tell when someone aint right.”
There’s some truth to that.
I will NEVER IN MY WHOLE LIFE…travel to India
My brother and sister-in-law spent 8 weeks there. Based on their travel stories about dried cow dung and exotic sinus infections, I know that’s a place I will not be visiting any time soon.
Hey, nothing against India. If I was rich and could travel the world whenever I wanted, I would probably get around to eventually visiting the Sub-continent. But right now I have three-odd weeks of vacation a year and only so much money. If I’m lucky I might take one airplane trip per year, and when I do, I’m going to make the most of it.
Tell you what. Before I go see India, I think I’d want to check out Hawaii or New Zealand first. Maybe the Barrier Reef again. More skiing in the Rockies. Not to mention France, Italy, Iceland…(moving down the list)…Iraq, Bosnia, Alabama…etc.
I will NEVER IN MY WHOLE LIFE…eat a lima bean.
Kryptonite is to Superman as Lima Beans are to the Friar. Sometimes veggie do-gooders will try to sneak a few into the dish they serve me and hope I won’t notice. But I’m onto them! I hate those nasty little green rat-bastard legumes…I hate ’em!
Who actually likes these things anyway? I bet you the world’s entire demand for lima beans can be met by one single farmer. I wish they’d find the one lima bean field, and I’d hire some eco-terrorists to torch it! Kids everywhere would love me for it.
I will NEVER IN MY WHOLE LIFE…climb Mount Everest
Assuming I had the fitness level…and the mountaineering skills…and the $60,000 to hire a guide to take me to the top…I’d still NEVER climb that stupid mountain.
There’s nothing wrong with climbing, but why do people have to ascend into the Death Zone? Hellooo!….maybe there’s a reason it’s called the DEATH ZONE. Like…DUH!
Hey, if coughing blood and watching your brain swell inside your cranium is your idea of a good time, then go right ahead. You go be the mountain-hero.
Meanwhile, I’ll stick to the lower elevations, where I get to keep all my fingers and toes, thank you very much.
I will NEVER IN MY WHOLE LIFE…ever play competitive soccer again.
I loved soccer as a kid, and played it well into my 30’s. When I started work full-time after grad school, I joined the company soccer team.
That’s when I found out, the hard way, that when you put a bunch of 40-year old men on a soccer field, it’s no longer fun. Unlike softball or hockey, which is more of a social event, there’s something about soccer that brings out the a-hole in alpha-males. There’s a lot of yelling, a lot of macho bullshit ego, and lots of dirty pool.
In my first exhibition game of the season someone was so intent on getting the ball they ended up kicking me as hard as they could in my knee. Whether this was an accident or not, I don’t know. But nobody said “Sorry about that buddy” when I was on the ground writhing in pain.
When I limped away, something went POP! That was my Anterior Cruciate Ligament waving bye-bye. It took 9 months to finally get the knee reconstruction surgery, and another year of re-hab before I was back to normal again.
You know, if I had sat at home that night and eaten chips in front of the TV, I’d have been better off.
I still do sports, but not soccer. Not when I can’t control how hard some idiot wants to hit me.
I will NEVER IN MY WHOLE LIFE….work again as hard as I did during my PhD
The last two years of my PhD rank among the worst in my adult life. It’s hard to describe the burn-out and constant stress one experiences in grad school unless you’ve gone through it yourself. I’ve never worked so hard and for so long. It just never ended. The stress did a number on my body. I ended up with anemia and pneumonia…I was surprised I didn’t end up in the hospital.
When I was finally done, all I could do for three months was come home from work and watch TV. It took about half a year after that before I started being active again.
After that, I vowed that I will never EVER work that hard again. And I haven’t.
(Though I feel sorry for people who do.)
I will NEVER IN MY WHOLE LIFE…grow up!
Life is too short. Growing old, you can’t help. But growing up…that’s optional. (I learned that from my Mom).