Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Possible ~ Plausible ~ Improbable

Favorite mug from my friend Diane ~ and magnet from my brother Dave

A few years ago, my brother Dave (scroll down to see birthday post) was complaining to me about "those touchy - feely things floating around called Bucket Lists. Actually, they are not Bucket Lists at all. Just the usual drivel. So, I am challenging you to a real Bucket List. Name five items in the following categories: "Possible," "Plausible," and "Improbable." You can and should take into account your age and physical condition but ignore silly things like money. Good Luck."

I was keen to take the challenge! I arranged my items thematically so that I could work on accomplishing my goals in increments of possibility. I'm not sure if Dave would approve, or if perhaps I veered off into touchy - feely; but I can say that I've been making pretty good progress on all of my "possibles," so time to move on to my "plausibles."

1. So many books . . . so little time . . .
Possible: Read 3 books per month: one fiction, one non-fiction, one misc.
Plausible: Read all the books beside my bed.*
Improbable: Read every book on my "To Read" list.

*The last time I sorted out the ever-increasing stacks in this famous spot where so many books have gone to die (i.e., "beside my bed") I created a whole new category: "To Read In My Next Lifetime." That took care of a few titles, Moby Dick, for instance, and The Education of Henry Adams (just don't tell my American Lit professors).

2. Around the house . . .
Possible: Eliminate clutter and feel more organized and quit acquiring earthly goods.
Plausible: See my entire house clean at the same time (in manner of above mug by Anne Taintor)
Improbable: Learn to really like gardening.

3. Creative endeavor . . .
Possible: Revisit my original goal when I graduated from high school: collage design.
Plausible: Organize all the writing I've saved over the years into some kind of readable, presentable, publishable collection of essays or epistolary novel.
Improbable: Become really good at piano, singing, swimming, diving, ice-skating, ballet & have better spatial, mathematical, left - brain skills; in short, be smarter & more talented.

4. Mental clarity . . .
Possible: Get better at saying, "Oh well," "That's okay," and "He don't' mean nothing by it, Honey," etc.
Plausible: Stop feeling guilty for all the things in my life that haven't exactly gone according to plan.
Improbable: Receive a personal epiphany* from The Goddess that will reveal to me a meaningful plan for the remainder of my life.

*In lieu of seeing a sign soon or hearing a calling, then I guess I'll just have to think something up for myself! Like that Kafka story about the Imperial Message that never comes, so finally "you sit at your window when evening falls and dream it to yourself"; or what Sleeping Beauty has to do if the Prince never comes to wake her up: "you kiss yourself and wake yourself up!"
[Go to column at right and scroll down for
"Magical Thoughts from Erica Jong" -> -> ]

5. Grow old along with me . . .
Possible: Visit all my old friends that I keep in touch with by writing & phone, but only see in person every 10 or 20 years.
Plausible: Live the rest of my life without medical intervention (of course, that could mean a short life).
Improbable: I'll answer this one with a sentence that I'm still puzzling over, from a book that Gerry gave me for Christmas a couple of years ago, Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi: "Every person's deepest lifelong desire is to be significant and to be recognized . . . [to feel appreciated] for what their mission is" (163).

Perhaps more likely to qualify as possible is the wish expressed on the tombstone of American poet Raymond Carver:

Late Fragment
And did you get what
you wanted from this life, even so?
I did.
And what did you want?
To call myself beloved, to feel myself
beloved on the earth.
~ Raymond Carver ~


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Speaking of improbability,
see the latest post on my book blog:
"And a New One Just Begun"


And for more questionnaires and quizzes, see

"Christmas Quiz"

"You're Out Walking"

"Take This Quiz!"

"Monday: Pop Quiz"

"Talk to Me"

Even Proust liked quizzes! Who knew?
Click to learn more and see Proust's questions & answers!

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