I want to paint my house bright green. Neon green. But just talking about it, I’ve already ruined it. This can’t be something planned. I just want to get up out of this chair, go to the Home Depot, have them mix me up a bunch of cans of the most fluorescent green anybody’s ever seen, and then I want to come home and start painting. I don’t want to have to ask my wife’s permission, or look up on the Internet how you’re supposed to go about painting a house, OK, I want this project done by the end of the day. I just want to take a wild impulse and run with it all the way to the end, straight off a neon green cliff.
OK, I want to take out a thousand dollars in cash, buy a bunch of sandwiches, hop on my bike and just start riding west. No, I won’t know where I’m going, OK, and I’m not bringing my cell phone either, so don’t think I’m going to wimp out once it starts getting dark out, looking for directions home, asking somebody to drive out and give me a ride back to town. No, no plans, nothing thought out. That’s what the thousand dollars is going to be for, I’ll have my money do all of the thinking for me. Like, where am I going to sleep? I don’t know, I’ll buy a really small tent, something I can put in my backpack, next to my sandwiches. I’ll camp out wherever. Just straight out west.
I want one of those long jobs at sea on a freighter, all right, and I don’t want to join any union or train for any certain position. No, I want to be right at the docks, I’ll already have the perfect seaman’s beard, I’ll have everything that I need, ready to go, the ship’s going to be ready to drift out of the port, I’m just going to hop on with the rest of the crew, right, I’ll blend right in. I’ll do like they do, swabbing the deck, I’ll jump in the kitchen at dinnertime and start chopping vegetables, making a nice stew for the crew. Maybe they’ll catch on eventually that I’m a stowaway, but by then I’ll have earned my spot. Sure, they’re not paying me anything, but by this point I’ll have a totally self-sufficient life, just sailing, eating, more swabbing the deck, a real marine life for me.
What I really want though is just to play a ton of video games. Like every time I go to a video game web site, all I hear about are all of these amazing games out, stuff I’ve never heard of, with fully immersive single-player stories, all backed up by massive online multiplayer fun. I don’t have enough time for video games. But that’s what I really want, nothing but time for XBOX and PlayStation. You’ll never find me in anything but pajamas. But it won’t be weird. Like when I order delivery from the diner, I won’t have to be ashamed to open the door looking like I haven’t been out of the house in weeks. I’ll just be like, “This is the best man, I am living the dream, all the time in the world to play all of the video games I want.” And the delivery guy is going to be like, “Yeah man, looks like you’ve really got it all.”
But that can’t be all there is to life. No, I’m still young enough to make something of myself physically. Wasn’t there a Disney movie about a guy in his fifties that became a rookie professional baseball player? I don’t know, all of those inspirational based-on-a-true-story movies kind of blend into each other after a while. But that’s what I’d really want to do with my life, if I could drop it all right now, I’d choose professional hockey player. Like, send me to hockey boot camp, get me hands-on training with the best hockey coaches in the world. I’ll give it my all, twenty-four seven, I’ll work like you’ve never seen anybody work before. I’m not looking to be a star, OK, but I’ve got to be of some value somewhere, a minor league franchise even, or somewhere in Russia. And then years from now they’ll make an inspirational Disney movie about me, and then an ice-capades meta-version of that movie.
I’m not asking for much out of life. Just the ability to dream. And then also the ability to wake up and make those dreams a reality. And I want them all, conflicting dreams, impulse dreams, I just want to do it, I just want somebody to give me all of these things. I want to be the first person to eat a thousand hot dogs in one sitting. You’ll see the Nathan’s Hot Dog championship scoreboard, it’ll be like 2012, some guy with 70. 2013, some other guy with 73. 2014, Rob G. with 1,000. 2015, some other guy with 75. And nobody’ll ever come close. I’ve just got to get out there and do it. I’m spending too much time sitting here writing about the life beyond my wildest dreams and not enough time actually making it happen. I’ve got to make it happen. All of it.