This week’s listmaster: David Anderson. David is working on his MFA in creative writing at Butler University. He’s an active member of the Eiteljorg Museum and an avid skier. He owns not one, but two Honda Odysseys.
To paraphrase Warren Miller, if you don’t do it this week, you’ll be one week older when you do.
1. Honeycrisp apples. Celebrate nature, as genetically enhanced by Big Ten researchers. Pay the premium, eat two a day. When you bite into them, they sound as good as they taste.
2. Shirley Bassey. I am admittedly out of touch with new music, so I wasn’t going to put any music on the list, but then I saw the 10/3/11 Punchlist where Ken said he was still buying music on CDs and I thought that if a guy buying CDs is still hip, maybe I am, too. Check out a hybrid venture of young and old: Shirley Bassey and the Propellerheads. Bassey is a Dame in the British Empire, but also a dame in the Mickey Spillane kinda way.
3. Breaker Morant. I nominate Breaker Morant in the category of best movie you have never seen. If it’s not, it’s surely the best movie ever made about the Second Boer War. Argue that one with me. Breaker Morant is a 1980 movie about a 1899 war, and if you saw it back in the day, it’s worth another look after our own turn-of-the-century war with moral dilemmas with respect to the rules of war and appropriate response to terrorism. As Shirley Bassey said, “Just little bits of history repeating . . .”
4. Vantasy life. If you have or are planning to have more than one child under the age of eight, just go ahead and buy the minivan this week. Don’t hold out, don’t fight that voice inside your head that’s telling you that you are not the kind of person who drives a minivan. Don’t fool yourself, you’re going to end up with one eventually and they are a helluva lot more utilitarian when you have car seats and strollers.
5. Throwing something out the window. It’s not cool to give parenting advice. Obviously, parenting skills are too important to discuss in a public forum. Most advice is unwanted, but this is so incontrovertibly beneficial to vehicular decorum that I have to share. When the kids are in the back seat arguing over the latest Happy Meal toy, reach back and grab it (the toy, not the child) and throw it out the window. Timing is critical; make sure they are not fighting over a new iPhone 4s that you just gave one of them for their 6th birthday. After something has left the car—when they know you are the kind of crazy that will throw their stuff onto the highway—you have a new kind of street cred. You will be the voice of authority in your own car—even if you’ve caved and bought a minivan. They might believe you’d actually turn the car around.
6. Streaks app. Whatever you do this week, keep track of it with Streaks. It’s designed for those of us who are aided by the most rudimentary motivational tools. I floss, I stretch, and I even get my daily recommended allowance of fiber, not because it’s good for me, but because I want to keep my streak alive.
7. Take a garbage bag to the school or a park and pick up trash. It’s exercise and it’s outdoors and it alleviates any guilt you might have about throwing the Happy Meal toy on the highway.
8. “When in doubt, do something.” Harry Chapin said that. I won’t give you a link to a great song by a singer-songwriter on a stool in a black turtleneck, but I will suggest an interview with two of my favorite New Yorkers: Harry Chapin and Tony Kornheiser. Work on your coefficient against dying.
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Van photo from horriblelicenseplates.blogspot.com.