Well, If you were here for the New Years Eve post, you’ll remember that I consulted deathclock.com to find that my expected due date in heaven is tomorrow. Of course, I don’t quite buy that- not that I’m not ready- but it is nice that we have tomorrow off (due to nobody ordering patio cushions in winter, go figure) so if it does happen, I don’t have to drop dead in the hallowed halls of Arden Companies, Kendallville. In honor of such a suspicious occasion, I thought to myself, what do you ask someone who dies tomorrow? And so, in order of thinking them up (with some help from Laurie), here are the fifty questions to ask oneself before dying, with my answers.
1- Where on earth would you like to be spending this last 24 hours? On a bright, sunny beach, watching the waves.
2- What did you want to be when you were a child? Though those who knew me back then would say Superman or some other hero, the truth is I wanted to be a Zoologist. Or an Astronomer.
3- What do you wish you were now? An archaeologist. Or an astronomer.
4- If you had the choice, where would you be living? Right here. Just bigger. And rent free. And the walk that takes us down to the boat ramp on the river takes us down to the boat ramp on the ocean.
5- What is the favorite place you ever lived? My childhood home, as things were when I was little. At the age of 5, 3/4 of an acre couldn’t have been more amazing.
6- What is the worst place you ever lived? Ankenbrook mobile home park. One chair. One mattress. Broke two keys off in the doorlock when frozen. And cockroaches.
7- Who is the one person you’d like to see before you die? My former pastor, Fred Woodward. To apologize.
8- How do you stand with your loved ones? I guess I’ll have to haunt the wake to find out. I hope okay.
9- How do you stand with your family? In all honesty, probably mixed at best. It’s hard to go from when we saw each other all the time- when mom was alive- to where “we only read you when you write” (Barry Manilow, Ships), and really know the answer to that one.
10- Worst moment, child: When I was 6, I’m guessing, I wanted a bowl of cheerios and my mom was busy. Reaching into my arsenal of idiotic things to say, I called her “an old hag”. Instead of the whupping I deserved, I got my cereal. It never tasted better, and I couldn’t eat a bite. I came back and apologized. Mom said, “You’d better, if you want your comic books tomorrow.” In truth, I hadn’t thought about the next day being Wednesday. In truth, I came THIS close to telling her I didn’t want any. But I was 6.
11- Worst moment, adult: A tie between the day we decided on a divorce, and 6 year old KC started crying, shouting, “Who’s gonna take care of us??” and the night we had to put Fred to sleep. Cannot say I’ve ever forgiven myself for either one.
12- Best moment, child: Now that’s a tough one. Probably my first trip to Florida with my brother’s family. The ocean, the red clay in Georgia. The ratty motel in Lakeland with the frisbee sized moth hiding in the shower. Southern accents, Southern Nights, listening to the Komets kick Dayton’s butt in the playoffs from Cartersville, GA.
13- Best moment, adult: Going to see the Reds on my birthday thanks to my son. The best day ever, except for Ashley barfing her way across northern Cincinatti .
14- What would you change about yourself physically? Everything bigger, except for the belly.
15- What one thing that to haven’t done- but could (or could have) physically do- would you do? Geez, this question didn’t seem that hard when I came up with it! I’ll have to come back to this one.
16- How about the one that you cannot physically do that you’d like to? That’s easy. I wish I’d have had the hand-mind coordination to play a musical instrument. Any one.
17- What do you wish you’d have done a better job at? Being a father, especially to my daughter.
18- You’re all prepared to die- all the T’s are crossed and the I’s are dotted, you’re at peace with your maker and your fate. Suddenly, you get a second chance, say a ten-year extension. Do you accept it? Nope, I’m good.
19- What would you change emotionally about yourself? Welcome to extreme makeover, psyche edition! I suppose, to be pinned down to one thing, it all flows from the concept of self-worth.
20-What would have changed the most for you if you’d been rich? I’d like to think that God had the same plan in mind for me whatever. Therefore. the answer is, “would have given more to others.” If not, the standard answer is, “would’ve done better drugs.”
Are you ready to answer #15 yet? Umm, not quite.
21- If someone gave you $1 million today, with one day left to live, what would you do with it? Split it up between Laurie, KC, Shenan, our two sponsored kids Oscar and Denilson, and maybe save me a couple hundred to go to Showgirls one more time. Or not.
22- What one person gone from your life do you miss the most? Mom, of course.
23- What one person will you miss the least? Another good one! How about the person at Domar.ru who keeps sending my blog spam comments in Cyrillic?
24- What is your biggest regret? Here’s the biggie. (sighs) Not doing my marriage right, from beginning to end.
25- What is your biggest accomplishment? If I did anyone any good by God’s grace when I was a Sunday School teacher, that would be it.
26- If you come back as a ghost, who would you haunt? My atheist acquaintance Joshua. So I could go all Luke 16:31 on him.
27- If you were to spend your last day in a bar, who would you do it with? My dad. We never did get around to that.
28- Same question, deserted island. Laurie. The one person I’d be guaranteed not to swim away from.
29- Same question, in bed. WTF? Who came up with these questions? IDK, how about Sandra from Property Virgins.
How about #15? Shoot, #29 might not be a bad answer here, either…
30 and 31- What one thing would you like to tell your kids before you go? For KC, I think I already covered that a few nights back- “If one of us makes it through, we all have a chance.” For Shenan, “Take life seriously. Take yourself seriously. Take your future seriously.”
32- If you could change one thing about your city, what would it be? To get the powers that be to take the prevention of crime in the ghettohoods seriously. And prevention there meaning prevention of its spreading elsewhere.
33- Same question, state. To get Indianapolis to stop being so stuck on itself. Maybe then, Fort Wayne would stop being so stuck on Indianapolis. And I’d pass a law that any lawmaker that is absent from his post because he wants to block passage of laws he doesn’t like be put in jail until he’s ready to do his job. And I’d send the Colts back to Baltimore.
34- Same question, nation. I’d get us back to a point where every political opinion wasn’t life-or-death polarizing. If the party with the most vote wants it, try it. If it’s wrong, they’ll not be the party with the most votes next time.
35- Same question, world. Instead of those who say, our way or die, killing people, how about they all drop dead?
36- If you were to spend that last day in Washington, DC, who would it be with? My first reaction is with someone who desperately needs my foot in his butt ( Obama, Pelosi, Reid). Second is to spend it with someone like-minded to bounce ideas with (perhaps Ryan, Boehner, or Stutzman). In the end, though, I’ll go with Pelosi, since she has the biggest bar tab.
37- Where do you want to go for your last meal? A buffet put on by Red Lobster and Casa Grille.
38- The one place you wish you’d seen before you die? Hisarlik. Or Gettysburg.
39- If you could go see one of your sports teams play one more game, which one? The A’s in baseball. Preferably the 1972-4 team. This year’s team is going to blow chunks.
40- If you could watch one last concert live, who would it be? There are a million acts I’d love to see that I never had, but if I have just one shot, I don’t want to waste it on someone who might suck live. BTO never let me down, I’ll go with them.
41- Laurie came up with this one (as well as many others)- If you had to come back as either a different ethnicity or in a different country, what would you pick? I’ll let the Chris of childhood answer this- “I wanna be a Cherokee!”
42- If you were to be reincarnated as an animal or plant, what would you pick? Something that doesn’t like to eat poop like Scrappy.
43- What do you want for a funeral service? A wake like dad had- everyone comes over, eats, drinks, plays cards, be merry. And somebody had DAMN well better play Share The Land by the Guess Who! It’s the only time I’ll allow tears.
44- What blessing would you like to confer on someone? On Shenan, to grow up and be a happy, productive, and fulfilled adult.
45- What curse would you like to levy on someone? No curses. This world will be messed up enough without me.
46- What habit or mannerism would you like to have changed about you? My inability to look someone in the eye, and remember their name the first time.
47- Who do you want to share that last moment with? If I only get one, Scrappy.
48- Which blog friend (which you haven’t met) would you most like to meet? Average Girl Tracy. All other things being equal, you can’t beat a woman who laughs at farts.
49- If you could spend that day with one figure no longer living, who would it be? Mom. It would have been nice to have gotten to know her.
50- What one living person would you have liked to have known better? I’d like to get to know my daughter Shenan as she will be as an adult.