“And he said, “I went skydiving! I went Rocky Mountain climbing. I went 2.7 seconds on a bull named Fu Manchu. And I loved deeper. And I spoke sweeter. And I gave forgiveness I’d been denying.” And he said, “Someday I hope you get the chance… to live like you were dying.” Lyrics excerpted from “Live Like You Were Dying”, written by Tim Nichols and Craig Wiseman circa 2003. They crafted the song based on family and friends who learned of terminal illnesses and oft had a new perspective on life upon learning that they had limited time remaining. They decided to write a song based on that concept, hoping that it might inspire others in similar situations.

Well… that certainly killed all the lights and took us to a dark place. Then again, maybe we can attribute this present darkness to it being too early in the morning. Perhaps a fresh cup of joe might shed some positive illumination on the subject.

Ah… a silent prayer of thanks, for the earlier riser who’s already got the percolator percolated. Now to grab… a verbalized curse of frustration, for the earlier riser who’s snagged my favorite mug. There can be but one culprit. The perpetrator of the confiscated coffee cup caper is of course, none other than my diminutive, stuffed, yellow bear sidekick… John Q.

In the room of living, he has drug an end table up to the love seat, to make a makeshift desk. Upon which are several pieces of paper, an assortment of colored pencils and crayons, a small pail and one pilfered coffee mug. He’s writing away intently with as much concentration as his polyester/cotton blend, stuffed brain will allow. Deep in padded thoughts, but a clearing of the throat and an activity inquiry brings his attention to mine.

Before he can be asked what he’s up to, he excitedly explains. “I’m worwking on my buckets wist! Fwank (Frank ­— the angel of death, regular resident and close friend of all things Saw) said evewy anybody should do one!” he says, smiling broadly and holding it out for my inspection. Why an immortal stuffie would need such a thing is beyond me, but curiosity prevails so let us see what we have here.

Ten galwon, 5 galwon, wittle pail, sand bucket (shaped wike a wittle castle), ice bucket, mopping bucket, milking pail, wooden bucket, pwastic bucket, popcorns bucket, bucket wif spouts, paint can (it’s wike a bucket), bucket of chicken…Thinking Outside The Bucket

Taking the paper back, he folds it carefully and gingerly places it into his pail. Umm, John that’s a list of different types of buckets, not a “bucket list”. “Huh uh, yes it is any no a buckets wist!” he says defiantly, “These are all the buckets I want to do… and see it’s in a wittle bucket!”.

When trying to explain that a bucket list is a list of things you want to do or accomplish before you “*kick the bucket” (*die) he freaks out. “Don’t anyno kick my bucket,” he exclaims clutching it to his chest, “you’ll do a dent init and spiwl out my wist!” Before explanations can be provided, he hops down and runs away with his bucket. Sigh, I’ll have to explain that later, when he’s calmed down a bit.

So how about you? What’s on your bucket list? Does anyone actually have a literal written bucket list anymore?

Many have life goals based on social positions and financial gain, but these aren’t really bucket contents. The “bucket” should be filled with things one hopes to see, do and experience in life before it is kicked. So, what to put in the bucket? There are so many things, how does one choose?

Perhaps, in filling the bucket, it is wise to consider the difference between “want” and “can”. There is no point in wanting things that can never be, it will only lead to a feeling of failure in the end. However, focusing on and doing things that can actually be done will yield rewarding results. You just have to get out there and do what you can, as long as you can, as soon as you can — it’s never too early to start emptying the bucket.

That said, maybe it’s time I review and revise my own bucket list. Just retrieve my coffee cup and WTF… is this spaghetti???

I welcome almost all questions, comments via FOCUS, or E-mail me at wanderingchainsaw@gmail.com.

Hope to hear from ya, until then try and stay focused! See ya.