I’m a week away from turning 32. That’s weird. I think by this point in my life I thought I’d have more to show for it than a personality and good friends. Still, a lot of people have a lot less. Years and years ago I had what at the time felt like a prophetic dream. In this dream, an abstract figure told me I’d die at 32. No explanation, just a bizarrely specific non-specific prophecy. No how or why, just a sentence. It’s dumb, but deep down I think I’ve always believed it on some level. Accepted it, y’know?
Unlike heroes of fiction, it’s never spurred me to greater heights. I haven’t warped my life around some quest for purpose on a limited time frame. I haven’t danced like nobody was watching on a mountaintop. I haven’t kissed in the rain just to feel the water form a conduit between my soul and another. I haven’t eaten, prayed, lived, laughed or loved my way across Europe. I got kicked out of the Church of Scientology once for being rude, but that was hardly a triumphant act of rebellion. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not lamenting a thing. I consider amassing a personality and good friends to be a life well lived.
I might survive the next year, but I might not. Whether prophecy, self-fulfilling prophecy or dumb luck, it’s mostly out of my hands. We can’t predict the future beyond best guesses, and every time I watch a murder mystery I guess the wrong killer, so I have pretty low portent-ial. I could be sealing my own fate here, but maybe I’ll survive to be boring at a ripe old age. I think we all deserve the right to grow into our own irrelevance. What then? What if I roll the dice and overcome my own expectations? Do I have a game plan for survival? What would I want out of a life? What would I do with all those years? It seems like a ton of time to fill. I’m making it sound like a chore. I’m sure at times it would be, but it wouldn’t have to be. Not always. Let’s do a thought experiment. I say “let’s”, but really this is a one sided conversation. If I were to transcend the age of 32, what kind of stuff would I want to have done before my final curtain call?
Like a low-rent The Matrix, it’s Bullet(point) Time, Baby!
- I want to eat everything. More accurately, I want to challenge my palate and discover exciting flavours I’d not have discovered otherwise. This means all manner of spices, food with unusual viscosity, game meats of all varieties, potentially illegal or problematic foods, breakfast for dinner, dessert for lunch and fondue for breakfast.
- I want to travel, see sights, talk with strangers and discover walks of life far flung from my own. I want to stop travelling almost exclusively to North America, Montreal, London (England) and down under. I want to see Europe, Asia, South America and places that aren’t immediately coming to my geographically challenged brain. Just because I don’t know them, doesn’t mean I wouldn’t love them.
- I want to find a passion. I don’t yet know what that means. I’ve never had a true passion. I’ve had things I’ve enjoyed, but never something that’s come along and gripped me with hitherto unknown fervour. Life’s worth a lot more than what suffices. Once I know what that is, I’ll report back with gusto.
- I want to get married, have kids, develop that peculiar fascination that men of a certain age have with World War 2. Just because I don’t necessarily value having a nuclear family right now, doesn’t mean I don’t want those things at some point. When I know, I’ll know. Or I’ll never feel ready, everyone will leave me and I’ll wish I died at 32.
I’m sure I want to do more, but these days I mostly just want to play Magic. Is this adulthood?