Monday, 20 September 2010

A Portrait of the Artist as a Crazy Lady

You know how some people make their own bucket list so that they can cross off 'tickle a rhino under the chin' to feel like they've lived. That they are living. That god damn THEY'RE ALIVE. Well, I don't have a bucket list.

Can you imagine how much pressure it must be to stare everyday at those daunting bullet points and go another twenty-four hours without scratching something off that major 'To Do' list? Imagine going a whole month without crossing something off. I imagine that feeling is akin to the panicky sensation I get when I'm in a store, right before it closes.

Also, consider the fact you will likely be sharing your bucket list with people. That means you will feel forced to choose pithy ambitions like 'canoe over moonlit waters while reciting Dylan Thomas poetry' when really you want to write 'scream every curse word I know at the next person who cuts me off in traffic'.

Also, everyone knows your bucket list has to have one obligatory good-deed entry like 'teach somebody to read'.  So what happens when the bucket list crudely places a crossroads in your day, and you have to choose between 'having fun' or 'groan...cross something off the bucket list.'  For example, say one morning you find out that on that day there is an event happening at your local mall where everyone is assigned an illiterate, and you have the chance to hand some person the golden key to all written knowledge AND cross something off the bucket list. But inconveniently this "Teach an Illiterate to Read" day also coincides with the one day where you can cash in your coupon to get a pedicure at the most killer spa you could otherwise not afford.

What's a girl to do?

No, the bucket list is too much pressure so I do not have one.

Rather if I'm going about my day, I will sometimes pause to think 'you know, if I did have a bucket list...' and then will likely choose to partake in the particular event that has given me pause in the first place. Mainly this happens as I pass the fall fashion window displays.

"You know, if I did have a bucket list it would probably say 'one day rock an equestrian riding sweater that has patches on the elbows' so I need to go into this store and try that on."

This is why I want you all to know that in my first Interlaken post when I wrote that I wandered around and 'fed some birds', this activity wasn't as nearly as pathetic as it sounded. Rather I happened to be sitting on a park bench and admiring the view when I found an old stale granola bar in my backpack. Since I believed it was clearly inedible I thought "I know, I'll feed it to the birds! There will be a moment of my day where I just feed some birds! That sounds bucket list-y."

(Okay, I realize this still sounds sad and pathetic.)

So I crumbled some of the granola bar and scattered it around my feet and waited for some birds to come. But no birds came. So I crumbled even more granola bar and chucked that even further, hoping to attract at least one bird's attention.

Still, no birds.

"What the hell! On Sunday I had a damn bird try to steal a piece of my plum tart when I was still eating it, and now no birds will come and feast on the crumbs of this stale granola?"

So what do you do while you wait for birds to come and eat your offering of stale granola? Well, if you're like me, you channel your inner narcissist and take horribly unflattering pictures of yourself.



As I snapped these gems, a couple approached me and the husband asked, in the most American of American drawls, "Hey there sweetheart, do ya need yer picture taken?"

(I die of shame)

"Oh....geez...no, but thank-you so much for asking. I'm just...taking pictures of the birds."

Then the couple looked at my feet and clearly saw no birds pecking around.

(I die of shame, part 2)

 "Alrighty then. You have a nice day," they said cautiously as they walked away with raised eyebrows.

"You too," I answered meekly.

As I considered how utterly humiliating that little encounter was, a lone bird swooped to my feet. I considered calling back to the couple and proclaiming, "Hey look! See! I AM feeding the birds!" but for obvious reasons I was able to refrain.



This bird did not appreciate the old food I was offering, and after a couple of pecks, he left me. One more bird did swoop in after he left, but all in all it was the sorriest intended 'feeding of the birds' in the whole history of 'feeding of the birds'. And that even includes the time my grandad took my sisters and I to a park in Victoria to feed some ducks. I walked a few feet away from the group and was tossing my white bread crusts at a swan when an old lady decided to impart her ancient wisdom on young me:

 "Don't feed the ducks that garbage! It mucks up their insides!"

Since I was a young and sensitive thing who buckled under pressure, I dumped my entire bag of crusts in the pond and ran back to my grandad in tears.

Anyways, the purposeful decision to feed Interlaken birds because it seemed 'bucket list-y' has once again reminded me that the said fabled list that is supposed to bring your life meaning, purpose, and a great sense of achievement and satisfaction is a lot of garbage.

IT JUST MUCKS UP YOUR DAY.

9 comments:

Cheryl from Saskatchewan said...

I totally agree - too much pressure to write down an actual list. I just make the list as I go out and do the stuff that may have been on the list. Who knows what number I will stop at??

Habebi said...

Ha ha ha!! You poor thing! Getting asked if you need your picture taken sounds straight out of a movie. Bless your heart. If it makes you feel any better think about shopping! ;-)

Ais said...

Well, at least you werent like the woman in Home Alone. Sitting on a bench covered in pigeons and loving it!

Dad said...

Great self photo's Cait......#'s 1 and 5 are definitely the best! And wow......has your hair ever grown.

Caitie said...

Ais--WE ARE TOTALLY SISTERS. I was going to mention the crazy pigeon lady from Home Alone. I was also going to mention how people willingly pay 4 euros to some Venetian bird seed vendor, for the chance to get shit on by a bunch of pigeons. hahaha. See you in like...THREE WEEKS!

Ais said...

Haha, yeah the Venice pigeons. And the people just laugh like its the time of their lives. I bet they feel super itchy and disgusted with themselves after when they realize how much bird debris is on their clothing haha. See ya in three weeks!

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Anonymous said...

You nicely summed up the issue. I would add that this doesn’t exactly concenplate often. xD Anyway, good post…

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