Monday, July 14, 2008

Listing (All the Things I Should Be Doing Besides Making Lists)

I've been wanting to send a former student a care package to let her know I'm thinking about her while she's working on herself in recovery. On a date downtown with my husband Saturday night, he gave me ten minutes to peruse Urban Outfitter, one of his least favorite stores. In there, I found not only another former student working, but the perfect book for my target: Listography: Your Life in Lists.

In 1996-7, when I lived in Africa, more than anything else I had Time. Because I had so much of it, I used Time in creative ways: baking bread from scratch, making tortillas and then tortilla chips from scratch, walking, painting, listening to music, reading, and writing. In Kenya they sell newsprint notebooks in different sizes and I couldn't help buying a variety of them. On the spine of the smallest one, I wrote "The Book of Lists," and began starting lists of all sorts of random things.

Here is a list of my lists (in the order they can be found in my little book):

1. Life Goals
2. Things I Really Should Do Someday So I Don't Disappoint Myself
3. Things to Buy Someday
4. Things I Miss
5. Things I Used to Hate That Now I Like
6. Yucky Things
7. Favorite Authors
8. Favorite Poets
9. Favorite Artists
10. Annoying Things
11. Music I Grew Up With
12. Favorite Singers/Voices
13. Favorite Groups
14. Favorite Movies
15. Fun Times
16. Regrets/Stupid Times
17. Proud Moments
18. Favorite Colors
19. Projects
20. Countries I've Been To
21. All-Time Favorite People
22. Guys I've Kissed
23. Funny Things I've Owned
24. Phases I've Gone Through
25. TV Shows I Have Loved
26. Cool People I Have Met (By Accident)
27. Bad Habits
28. Great Books
29. Rave Runs
30. Admired
31. Admirers
32. Folks I Esteem
33. Children's Books (I Loved)
34. Things I Hope I Won't Ever Subscribe To
35. Good Smells
36. Places to Go Someday

My lists are more than ten years old (though I have added on to them periodically), and it's interesting to see how my single, living-abroad (far from family and friends) life affected what I enumerated. For example, the Things to Buy Someday List is dominated by practical items like camping gear, and My Life Goals List includes a number of things I have accomplished, including Have a Great Dog, Really Learn to Sail, Own a House, and Have an Amazing Lifetime Companion.

I'll post some lists here periodically, or just list some more lists I'd like to make, like:

1. Things I Avoid Spending Money On, and
2. Things (It Occurs to Me) That I Do In a Uniquely-Me Way

1 comment:

me said...

I love the list idea. I carry around a small notebook just for that purpose, I even bought an app for the new iPhone for lists.