Tag Archives: Bucket List

Off To A Good Start

w00t times 1000
w00t times 1000

As I mentioned back in the old time-y days of 2012, my attempt to log 1000 miles on my treadmill before I rang in 2013 ended just shy of my goal1. While I could have put in the extra miles on the 31st of December, I opted to prevent a potential injury and call it a day.

I do not regret that decision.

In fact, I regret it even less today because I managed to get my lazy ass on the treadmill and knock out the required distance to put me over the top. The number 1000 never looked so good2.

The best part about this is that I get to cross something off of my Not-So-Bucket-List list, making two items in two days3. What an awesome start to the year.

Of course, I don’t think I’ll necessarily be able to sustain this pace all year. Most of my Not-So-Bucket-List items require a significant time contribution, and there are other things I need to do – such as work, stretch, bike, sleep, and veg out with the wee fuzzball.

Regardless, I think I’m going to bask in the warming glow that is crossing off two items in two days for the rest of the eve. In fact, I may have a scotch to celebrate.

1 Approximately 4 miles shy, to be exact.

2 See how shiny and awesome it looks below?

3 The first being to set up a budget for 2013. Which I did. Yesterday. Because I’m a nerd. W00t!


Cleaning House – Nerd Style

Cleanliness is next to godliness.

Being the a place for everything and everything in its place kind of man who I am, I have taken on the task of revamping my Not-So-Bucket-List list. I did this mainly because I was getting tired of searching for things in the ever-growing list. I also didn’t like the aesthetics of such a massive list where some items were crossed off, and some were not.

I like clean lists.

I like organization.

My Not-So-Bucket-List had neither of those characteristics.

To deal with these issues I decided to take action. I poured myself a large cup of coffee, grabbed a snack, put on some writing tunes, and set myself to task – clean up, clear out, organize, overhaul, and improve my existing Not-So-Bucket-List list. And that dear readers is why I present to you my New And Improved Not So Bucket List list. You can find it up there in the menu bar labelled NAI-NSBL. The NAI stands for New And Improved.

But what’s so new and improved about it? you’re probably wondering.

Well, first off the list is now categorized. You’ll be able to find items classified under one of the following categories: Academic, Adventure, Culinary, Culture, Exercise, Finances, House, Other, Reading, and Travel. Second, the categories are also alphabetized1. Crazy, right?

To avoid the New Coke vs. Old Coke type of mass hysteria the old list will live on here, but it will no longer be updated. Further, in order to keep things spic-and-span, I’ll be moving all of the things I manage to do to another list known as my Not So Bucket List Been There Done That (NSBL-BTDT). In this way, I’ll be able to easily figure out month-over-month and year-over-year statistics. Yes, I am that nerdy.

For those with a keen eye, you’ll also noticed that some of the incomplete items on the original list have not made it onto the new list. Some have been removed because I was advised by my good friend and chiropractor Dr. Mark that they were really bad for my back2, while others were removed because the danger factor was deemed to be far too high3. I’m sure my mom will be relieved to read that.

As always, if you have any crazy ideas of items I should add to my list please pass them along. I’m always open to new and crazy adventures.

1 Because 4 out of 5 Scienticians suggest that alphabetized categories are about 315% better than non-alphabetized lists.

2 I’m specifically referring to all of the sit-up challenges I had on my list.

3 Base-jumping, how I wish you weren’t so deadly. And honestly, the only reason this is really off my list is that the time commitment required to get to the point where I could base-jump is far outside of the time I’d actually have available to do it. I think. I may re-evaluate this at a later date.

The Edge Walk

Look ma, no hands!

I would have sworn that the CN Tower Edge Walk was on my Not-So-Bucket-List list, but apparently it wasn’t. I repeat – wasn’t. Given that this has been on the list in my mind since I heard about it last year, I’ve turned wasn’t into was by retroactively adding it to my list today. It is now item #279.

And because I completed the CN Tower Edge Walk today, I’m very quickly crossing item #279 from my list. I’m nothing if not efficient.

The walk itself was incredible. After being very securely tethered to the tower by not one but two ropes, we – we being me, Gerarda, Alan, Randy, and two other people (Mark and Deborah) who joined our group – took our first steps 356 metres (1168 feet) above the streets of Toronto.

In a word – amazing.

The adrenalin rush was almost immediate. The view – especially given the clear day we were presented with – was fantastic. We were able to see Niagara Falls and Rochester New York from our vantage. And of course, we could see Toronto in all directions. It was simply stunning.

Our first challenge was called Toes Over Toronto. The goal, walk to the edge of the ledge to the point where part of our feet were off of it. Then, let go of our support ropes. Crazy exhilarating. It’s amazing how much the body does not want to do it.

The second challenge – turn around, sit down, and then slowly walk ourselves backwards over the edge. Once there, extend our legs and enjoy the feeling of leaning off of the tower. For me, this was very much like repelling. Exhilarating, amazing, and absolutely insane. I’d so do it again.

The last challenge was the biggest of them all. Face out from the tower, walk forward, and then lean out as if diving off the tower. Amazing!

Honestly, the adventure is beyond words. I’m currently processing a video from the day so will post that as soon as possible.

As for me – I’m off to bed – but I’m already thinking that I have to do this again.

Another One Bites The Dust

Dear Item #81 on my Not-So-Bucket-List list,

After quite a lengthy stay as a full-fledged member of the as-yet-to-do on my Not-So-Bucket-List, I have decided that you have paid your dues and should be rewarded for this. As such, as of today – July 22, 2012 – I happily upgrade your status from as-yet-to-do to so-freaking-done. 

Let me explain my reasoning. First, you’ve sat patiently on my list, never questioning why I was spending so much time dealing with the other items around you – even some of those that arrived after you. I appreciate that. Second, you’ve been around so long (since the inception of my list) I realized that I was neglecting you. And that is just plain wrong. I apologize for that. Third, and this is probably the most important reason for your movement to the so-freaking-done class:

You are so freaking done!

80+ km of bike-y goodness

That’s right folks, today was the day that I finally managed a full 80+km bike ride. And I have to say, despite the fact that my body is rather tired right now, it felt great. The pace was comfortable, I felt strong, and the weather couldn’t have been better – even if it was a little bit warm.

I do, however, need to fuel better. By the end of the bike, I realized just how dehydrated and hungry I was. Sadly, that meant I was also rather tired so a nap won out over all other issues. I’ve since corrected the hydration issue, but still need to pump about 2000 Calories into my gob if I intend not to be in a Caloric deficit today. Given the hour of the day, and the amount of food that I typically eat, I think I’m going to have to eat a big-ole-bowl of deep-fried lard to avoid that.

Anyway, now that I’ve successfully crossed off item #81, I have to set my focus on bigger and better goals – such as biking 100km, or perhaps even biking 160km.

Bring it!

That’s Crazy Awesome

I also want to do this again. But solo.

Jeepers. Today I realized that I’ve not updated my Not-So-Bucket-List list in quite some time. In fact, it has been over a month since I’ve added something to it.

What is up with that?

I must have been out having fun crossing things off my list1, and clearly have forgotten all about updating it. You see, this list can’t be static. That would just be…wrong.

How did I realize that my list hadn’t been updated since May 19? Well, first – I’m rather nerdly2 and write the date of the last update at the bottom of the list. Second – my brother sent me the following YouTube video (embedded below). Clearly this was something that he knew I would want to do. And he’s right. I do want to do it.

Skydiving in a Squirrel Suit. I’m totally going to do that.

And because I’m the kind of guy who knows guys like Rick3, I knew immediately that he would want to know about this as well.

And I was correct. Which means I win the day, right?

Anyway, Rick’s reply to the video: That’s crazy awesome! Whoohoo.

I couldn’t agree more Rick. I couldn’t agree more.

And so, without further ado I introduce you to the newest item on my Not-So-Bucket-List list – #276: Visit Victoria Falls and Swim in the Devil’s Pool. W00t!

Oh, and just for fun I may have also added item #277: Skydive Solo, and item #278: Skydive in a Squirrel Suit.

Because why add one item when I can add three?

1 Such as items #20, #183, #247, and #258.

2 I probably should have warned you that I was about to drop a bomb. Sorry, next time I’ll have you sit down first.

3 Who is trying to win a contest so that he can raise money for the Kidney Foundation of Canada – click here to vote for him.

Let’s Bounce!

These things are 100% Pure Awesome.

Some of you on the Twitter or the Facebook will already be aware that I tried something new the other day. And amazingly, the new something wasn’t even something that I had listed on my Not-So-Bucket-List list1. I was, however, introduced to this new something by my friend Amanda.

What was this new thing? In a word – Kangooing2. Okay, I’m not really sure that’s a word. Actually, I’m pretty sure that it’s not a word. However, I’m going to pretend it is and that it makes perfect sense.

Anyway, Kangoos (or Kangoo Jumps as they are officially known) are a shoe but with a twist. A bouncy twist. And if I were Tigger, I’d say it was a bouncy-trouncy-flouncy-pouncy kind of twist. But I’m not Tigger, so I won’t say that.

What can I tell you about these shoes? Well, for starters they strap on almost like ski boots, but without the forward slanting nature of ski boots. Attached to the base of the shoe is a spring of sorts. A spring that acts to diminish the force that otherwise would pass through your joints if you were to simply go for a run in regular shoes.

Epic Kangooing.

But honestly, while all the technical stuff3 is great, it really doesn’t describe the experience. To understand the experience, you really have to try the Kangoos out for yourself.

I will say this – running in Kangoos (or Kangooing) is hilariously awesome. I dare anyone to try them out and not smile. In fact, I dare anyone to try them and not laugh out loud. I was laughing constantly because the feeling was so different from running. I felt at times like I was floating; that I had the stride of a super hero. And because of that, I found myself running in circles trying ever harder to bounce higher and higher. It was as if I were a little kid attempting to get a high from making myself dizzy.

Point is – they made me feel like a kid. And that is pretty much a priceless feeling.

You really need to give these things a try. You won’t be disappointed.

1 Mainly because I didn’t know this thing existed.

2 A perfectly cromulent word.

3 Technical stuff such as an 80% impact reduction, and an 18% increase in V02 Max (as indicated on their website).

Going To Sleep In My Forever Box

Don't fear the reaper! Happy Halloween!

Sunday was, for those who missed it, Create a Great Funeral Day. The idea behind this day – plan now, so that your loved ones aren’t troubled when you finally kick the proverbial bucket. Morbid? To some perhaps. To me, an opportunity to plan a most amazing and final adventure after I shuffle off this mortal coil (thank you Shakespeare).

Now, before reading on be aware that what I’m about to reveal is not my will. It’s an addendum to it, if you will. Some of the things listed here are suggestions. Some of the things listed here are for those adventurous few that I believe will have it in them to complete the tasks set out for them. And finally, some of the things listed here are just hilarious (to me); and I’d much rather have a big ass party after my death than a sombre mourn-fest1. And of course, I realize that this is clearly not a legal document, but it is something that I want taken seriously should I suddenly be found passing over a coin or two to the boatman on my final journey down the River Styx.

I guess what I’m trying to convey here, is that this is my real Bucket-List. That is, things that I want other people to do once I kick the bucket.

So, without further ado, and in no particular order, I offer you my AD2 -List – to be accomplished after I go to sleep in my forever box.

  • My ashes could be in here.

    After my ashes are returned to whomever is lucky enough to pick them up from wherever one picks up ashes, I want Steph to go on an adventure with them. Specifically, I want you to take my ashes all over the world. I’ll do my best to provide you with the funds to carry out this activity. I’d prefer it if you could do it in one go – that is, take a year off and go – but that’s not necessary. I’ll also try to make sure there’s enough so Eric can join you. I’ll provide more specific details later. All destinations must be documented with photos; specifically photos of me (in urn form of course) in various locations. The more inappropriate the better. The pictures and updates of my travels should be posted to this blog. When not travelling, you should take me out at least once a week somewhere nice. To dinner. Indian of course. Or sushi. Your choice.

  • Carolyn, as discussed, all computer equipment is to be crushed, magnetized, demagnetized, melted down, and thrown into the deepest part of the ocean. Or sent on a one way ticket to the sun. We both know why. That, or you can keep it.
  • Gerarda, Alan, Steph, and Eric: I expect you to take whatever collection of scotch I have gathered and have a giant booze filled night of hilarity. Preferably in New York City, or at Steph’s parent’s cottage. Or on a mountain top, because all the classy bitches drink mountain top scotch.
  • Elliot, you are instructed to snuggle everyone whenever they come by. Also, you are instructed to be the cutest cat in the history of cats forever. Note: you are one lucky cat. If I were of the ancient egyptian sort, you’d be coming with me.
  • Everyone I know should wear pi related stuffs on Pi Day. And they should sing the math song at the top of their lungs wherever they are, at Pi Time.
  • Rick, you must high-five 25 random strangers on the 1 year anniversary of my death. Each high-five must be documented, and then posted on-line.

    Rick is unimpressed by the situation. I have other feelings.
  • Rick and Beth, you are requested to remain Awesome for all time. To demonstrate this, you need to accomplish anything that I have not completed on my Not-So-Bucket-List. You may enlist the assistance of Aidan, Rob, Matt, Manon, Jana, Joni, Carolyn, Benjamin, Jhona, Mark, or Jamie to help you along with this feat. If other friends wish to volunteer, so be it. In fact, you may wish to create an army of people so that you might collectively accomplish all the items on the list within a set time period. Be creative. Further, all travel related items must include photographic evidence. Extra points if I’m in the photo.
  • The family must go on a giant wine tour. And I don’t mean just Niagara. I’m talking Niagara, California, Argentina, Germany, etc. You can opt to do this together, or split up and conquer the wine-world. Your choice. For extra points, you should document the tour with photos. These can be submitted to Steph so that she can post them on this blog.
  • Aqleema, you are requested to publish more of your work. Further, I want you to publish a book called “Adventures in Wanderlusting: The Dan Gillis Story”. Okay, maybe not. But at least keep publishing. Actually, I think you should publish a kids book.
  • Lara and Rebecca, you are requested to hold a Cribbage Bitches event on the anniversary of both my birth and my death. A glass of scotch should be ordered and consumed. Rebecca, you must double your Lara-directed zingers, since I won’t be there to assist. Lara, you must mock Rebecca any chance you get. Specifically if she ever borks up a game. Never let her forget it.
  • Beth, you must seek out and destroy all spiders in my name. And when you crush one, you must yell Zena Warrior Princess style.
  • Sean and Steph, at my funeral, you must do Spoken Word TLC. MUST.
  • Tweeps: “I love math” or “Math Rocks” should be a trending topic. I know you have the power.
  • Matt, if we haven’t done so, you must complete the insane race we’ve always talked about.
  • Nerdcaucus, you are requested to perform an interpretive dance number (choreographed by Lorna and Jasper) for the students of Math1200. The topics could be the epsilon-delta definition of the limit, integration by parts, integration by substitution, or arctrig differentiation. Your choice of course.
  • Jasper, you are requested to be the official videographer of the funeral events. I fully expect them to be turned into several YouTube posts, one of which will be a 5-Second-Friday film.
  • Rick, Mark, Beth, Carolyn, Gerarda, and Alan (and anyone else that runs), I ask you to run a half or full marathon dressed as unicorns. Because unicorns are epic. Also, they cry rainbow tears. And that is just awesome.

    Unicorn power!
  • A committee should be formed to award a “scholarship” in my name. The scholarship will be based mainly on proposals submitted by people who suffer from wanderlust. The more outrageous and adventurous (albeit safe) proposal should win.
  • All of my friends should do the no-pants subway ride. Because those of you who know me, know how much I hate pants. During said subway ride, I’d ask that all wear a black arm band with Pi on it.
  • Steph, I think another PhD Prom style party is in order. Open bar of course. And The Diana Downtown must cater it. MUST.
Anyway, that’s all I can think of right now. I may add to this list later. Or perhaps I’ll just write specific instructions inside envelopes that are only to be opened after my death. You know, all mysterious like.

Oh, and for those that might be wondering about the title – it’s a line from the Simpson’s. If you can name the character who said it, I offer you 1000000 interweb points to do as you see fit.

1 I know this assumes that people would actually mourn my great demise, but for argument sake, let’s go with this assumption. I guess what I’m saying, is let’s assume that on the day I return to that from which I came – dust – that I do so on a day that is a “good day to die”. That of course being a day when the maximum number of people will lament your new status as “life-challenged”.

2 AD = After Dan