“You’ve got about a year to live. Go do all the things you want to do, and don’t do them later, do them now.”
A friend told me about someone he knew who got that very news, and it occurred to me that that might not be a bad way to go. You gotta die sometime, so why not opt for preparing for it, rather than BOOM — a javelin just skewered you?
I have no idea why my first dying-suddenly scenario was someone getting skewered by a javelin. How often does that come up, really? However, should that be my cause of death, I want you all to serve shish kabob at my funeral.
My point is this: If I am ever told I have a year to live, I have a full list of activities at the ready. Here’s the crap I want to do before I (as Woody Allen would say) 'thin out.'
1. Get waist-length, platinum-blond hair extensions that make me look like a stripper. Then a month later, get my hair chemically straightened so I can have jet-black, straight hair. With bangs. Then move on to siren-red waves. Look. This is your big chance to make hair mistakes. Why not make this the year to do all the things you want to do to your head? Who’s going to make fun of you? You’re dying. This also means you can spend your money like it’s going out of style, which it will be, for you. So spend $400 on a Keratin treatment! I’ll make a pact with my best friend that if I expire during a hair mistake, that she will get me back to pretty for my eternal rest. I don’t want dumb hair for the rest of time.
2. Write Barry Gibb a letter telling him I’m dying and could he please just meet me for one simple drink. I’ve loved and dreamed about Barry Gibb of the Bee Gees since I was 13. Hey, I’m loyal. I feel like pulling the dying card might finally garner me a meeting with my idol. And maybe he’ll be really into women with siren-red waves and we’ll Do It, a thing I may or may not have also been dreaming about since age 13.
3. Try the same thing with Jon Hamm. OK, I’ve only loved him since I was 45. But still.
4. Kiss a leopard. I understand this may be detrimental to my well-being, but I am on my way out, anyway. I did hold a baby lion once, at a pet rescue fundraiser, and I can honestly tell you it was the best minute of my life. She was vibrating with life and wildness, and oh, it was great. And how I want to kiss a leopard. Who needs lips? I can get by for those last few months lipless. The Sleestaks did, but maybe that’s why they were so crabby.
5. Be a go-go dancer in a cage somewhere. I realize this might have been more of a goal if I had a year to live in, say, 1966, but somewhere in this world there is a club that still has go-go dancers in cages. I just know it. And I want to pull on some white boots and go (go).
Image: Miguel Virkkunen
6. Find a beach with pink sand and get terrifically drunk on it. I once read about a photo shoot at some beach with pink sand, and it has always sounded just lovely to me. I want to find the pink sand place, sit on a comfy chair, and drink something stupid out of a coconut. I’d love to have my best friends there, and we could tell stories and make coconut bras and laugh ourselves sick, until the rum got the better of us and we all wake up with pink-sand-encrusted nut bras. Which, by the way, would be an excellent band name.
7. Write a book. Maybe it’d be stupendous, and I’d be one of those people who wasn’t famous in her time, but who after her death got famous as shit. I feel like a lot of really excellent writers say things like “famous as shit.” Everyone would drone on about my fabulous book and sexy platinum hair. And my late-in-life marriage to Barry Gibb, who by the way is already married, so my cause of death will likely involve being beaten to death by the spouse of a Bee Gee.
If that happens, everyone who knows me in real life will say they always kind of figured I’d die dramatically, and didn’t you always know her Barry Gibb obsession would get her in trouble in the end? Then they’ll smile and adjust their coconut bras.
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