Bucket List

“We’re not the kids we used to be.”

“You’re right. We’re not,” I replied.

I stepped into the bank through the main doors and yelled at the top of my lungs. “Everybody, get down on the ground, right now!” I quickly pulled my shirt open to reveal all the dynamite strapped around my body and raised my hand holding a detonator to show them I meant business. “Give me all your money or I’ll blow this place to the ground!”

My partner walked in after me and threw a couple of duffel bags onto the counter in front of the tellers.

“Don’t make me repeat myself! Hands behind your backs! Follow my instructions and nobody is going to get hurt.”

Nobody had to be told twice, everybody else in the bank was now lying on their front with their hands behind their backs.

“Except the tellers, please get up and fill the bags with as much money as you can.”

They complied without a word. Pleased with the situation, I smiled and lowered my hand, which was still holding on tightly to the trigger of a detonator.

You see, the thing is – I knew that today would be the day that I was going to croak. It was a given. Many people have tried changing their fates. Nobody has ever succeeded. Knowing that, I didn’t even bother. However, knowing when I was going to die, I decided to live my life very differently. I mean, I can’t say if it would have been any different if I didn’t know – after all, I only had one life. But I guess that isn’t the point – or maybe it is.

Because I knew I was going to die today, for the past year of my life I spent it accomplishing all the irrational fantasies I had on my bucket list. One of the first few things I pulled off was skydiving without a parachute. You would think that would have ended me, but nope – you can’t beat the date. So by some stroke of luck, I managed to survive. That put me into overdrive and I decided to do all the things that I was afraid of doing before. I hopped out of a car at a safari. I ran through a shooting range that had a live practice going on. I drove my car into a lake. Each time, I came out unscathed. I was living my best life.

For my final task, I decided that I was going to live out my ultimate fantasy – to pull off a bank robbery. You see, I had done my best to stay clear of the law in all my previous tasks because what use would a life of ‘immortality’ be if I was locked up behind bars? Exactly. It would have been a miserable life.

So here I stood, waiting for my money to be packed. Minutes felt like forever. I checked my watch hand – only thirty seconds to go before I met my soulmate. I wonder who she would be. Was she one of the customers on the floor? It was hard to tell, none of the people on the ground dared to look up at me. Thirty seconds passed, and the alarm on my watch rang. Just like clockwork, the bell at the entrance to the bank rang.


In walked the most beautiful girl I had ever seen in my life.

“This must be her,” I thought to myself.

She stood still, frozen, stunned at the scene that lay in front of her.

“Wow,” she managed to whisper.

“Wow,” I said to myself.

Nimbly, she got down to her knees and lay on the ground. Her eyes met mine, and for a moment we exchanged glances. Then she never took her eyes off the tiled floor again.

“So much for meeting my soulmate.”

“Yo, I’ve got the money, let’s go!” said my partner who was now next to me with the loaded duffel bags strapped to both of his shoulders.

He rushed me out through the front doors where the getaway car was waiting at the street corner.

“Thanks a lot man,” he told me.

“Don’t sweat it,” I said. The alarm on my watch rang again. “You better make a move.”

“Tell Tort I said hi.”

“I will.”

The car shifted into gear and tore down the street. I sat down by the sidewalk and watched the car disappear in the distance. I took off the fake bomb that was strapped to my body and put the detonator down. I looked at the watch on my hand. “Any moment now.”

The alarm went off for the last time. A sudden pain shot through my body and I felt my chest tighten. I began to lose consciousness and struggled for air. Then the world around me turned black.

Writing Prompt from Reddit: Everyone is born with 3 dates on their wrist. One represents when you will accomplish your life’s goal, one is when you will meet your soulmate, and one is when you will die right down to the second. Yours are all the same day within a minute of each other.

Turning Eleven

Today, I paid my web host the money to keep my blog running for another two years. I don’t even know why. I have like 10 readers a day (honestly, thank you for reading) and I don’t even write content that I think is appealing to anyone who isn’t me.

Anyway, for those of you wondering – I have no ads on my blog. No, it’s not because you have adblock on, it’s because I chose not to monetize it. I’ve been campaigning against ads and advertorials on personal blogs since forever, and shall continue to do so. I paid for a domain and hosting so that visitors don’t have to look at ads on my blog. Also, adverts just make sites look ugly.

“Oh George, you’re so stupid. You’re stuck in your old ways! You’re being stupid by spending money and not making any.”

You know what, maybe they’re right (though I highly doubt it because the number of hits on my blog isn’t going to give me revenue anyway) but I write more for myself than anyone else. It’s just something I enjoy doing, and for me to monetize it would be turning it into some sort of job, which I wouldn’t want to happen. I like recording my thoughts down because I enjoy trips down memory lane for a few reasons:

  • I like seeing how much I’ve grown over the years in terms of writing style, vocabulary and choice of subjects.
  • I enjoy reminiscing – reading through my old posts allows me to travel back in time, to see what kind of state of mind I had then.
  • It’s fun to read about good (and bad) memories. See whether you’ve learned anything since or you’ve been making the same mistakes over and over again. I guess it’s kinda like looking through old photo albums except that I’m not much of a photographer, and I think I do a better job conveying my thoughts with words than photographs.
  • Hence, I see no reason to run ads on my blog and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

    Earlier this year, I made some slight modifications to my blog’s appearance, and you might have noticed I have a lot fewer constraints when it comes to what I write about. The only thing I’ve maintained is Technology Tuesdays and Writing Prompt Wednesdays. I did a Music Monday this week just because of Moose Blood, it’s not a regular thing anymore. Who knows what I’ll write in the coming months. Even I don’t know what I’m going to be up to. I’m insane!

    I’ll continue to write until I decide to stop writing one day, but for now I’m here to stay. Feel free to give me any feedback if there’s something you’d like to see more or less of and I’ll try to accommodate it.

    So once again, thanks for reading this trash blog for the past 11 years (longer if you’ve been following my shenanigans on Geocities and Blogspot). Here’s to another 11 years (or my death, whichever comes first).

    But then you said, “Stay Beautiful”

    Today, as I was looking for a Moose Blood song on YouTube to share, I noticed there wasn’t a video available so I had to look it up on Spotify instead. It was then I realized that the song must have meant something to me to actually launch Spotify just to share it. I won’t lie, these guys weren’t on my radar since their last release, but when their new album dropped I was blown away and went back to relisten to their whole discography.

    Moose Blood is a pop punk/emo band in similar vein to bands like Neck Deep and LYU. Despite their metal sounding name (what the fuck does Moose Blood even mean?) Anyway, this band has been around since 2012 though I only discovered them when they signed to Hopeless Records, where they put out an amazing album called Blush. Songs about love, loss, heartbreak, death – all sorts of tear-jerking anthems can be found on the album. Think – a grittier Dashboard Confessional with an English accent. A more mature-sounding You Me At Six.

    There are no blazing solos or pick sweeps to be found in their brand of music, but that’s not the point of music anyway. It’s all about what it makes you feel when you listen to them, and songs by these guys are full of feels. The fact that their albums feel very diverse, while retaining their core sound, shows that Moose Blood aren’t afraid to turn it up when they want to. The occasional guitar delays peppered throughout their riffs remind me a lot of The Dangerous Summer and The Graduate, which I love. I don’t have a long history of listening to Moose Blood, but falling in love with their discography again this year has pushed them up to one of my all time favorite bands.

    Their latest album is available for streaming on Spotify now. Here are some of my favorite songs from the band:

    Moose Blood – Talk In Your Sleep

    Moose Blood – Gum

    Moose Blood – Knuckles

    Moose Blood – Bukowski

    Moose Blood – Cheek

    Moose Blood – I Hope You’re Missing Me

    Moose Blood – Shimmer

    Moose Blood – Cherry

    Doors for Days

    Doors are wonderful inventions. I can’t imagine this planet without doors. If there were no such things as doors, life would be extremely different. Since that’s not true, I can only imagine what it’d be like.

    We would have no privacy, or total privacy. Imagine – if rooms had no doors, homes would probably be designed to have entrances that didn’t face common pathways. Everybody can see you taking a shit in the toilet (then again, I’ve heard that happens in China). If rooms didn’t have entrances, we’d probably be using ladders to climb into them, so nobody could peek inside easily. That would make it a bitch to move anything heavy inside.

    Homes would probably be designed vertically instead of horizontally – since we’d have to climb up or down into different rooms. Seems impractical to me, but I guess that’s why we have doors for a reason. Did you know the earliest record of doors can be traced back to the Egyptians? They were believed to be doorways to the afterlife. Today you learned something new! I know I did.

    On the plus side, not having doors means we wouldn’t have broken doors. It would also mean people can’t run into doors (they can still run into walls) and doors can’t fall on people. I guess the lack of doors would mean fewer jobs in the world (we wouldn’t have locksmiths or door makers). Would the absence of doors mean no doors on vehicles as well? Hmm.

    No doors would mean we wouldn’t have to deal with not knowing whether a door is supposed to swing towards or away from you or if it slides open. I’ve seen way too many people not following instructions on doors (pushing instead of pulling and vice versa). This problem has been eliminated in some places (by removing the handles from the side you’re supposed to push) but it isn’t a standard implemented worldwide – something I’ve wondered about for some time. I mean it makes so much sense – why would you want handles on the side where you’re supposed to push?

    Having handles on the pushing side will prevent people from falling on their faces while opening doors, since they’ll have something to hold on to. But in my opinion, if you’re incapable of pushing a door open without wiping out, you’ve got bigger issues to deal with.

    I’m looking forward to the day where we have some sort of membrane you can just walk through if you’re allowed to pass through it. It would also have the option to be transparent or opaque, depending on what you need it to be. This way you still get privacy when you want it. It will also have options to block out noise and retain/lose heat. I’m sure it’ll come soon. In my lifetime.

    Learning a new 60% layout

    During my time trying out different kinds of mechanical keyboards, I noticed that I had to adapt to a few different typing styles. This was very noticeable when I was typing on my Vortex Core – a 40% keyboard. Without a number row and the lack of certain dedicated punctuation keys, it changed the way I used the keyboard significantly. After using the Core for a month daily, I adapted and now I can type on it almost as fast as I did on a full-sized keyboard. In fact, it felt like training wheels – when I went back to a full-sized layout, I was able to type faster than before. I’m not sure if it was in my head and I was limiting my typing speed to begin with. For what it’s worth, I’ve come to appreciate having a dedicated number row on a keyboard now.

    Since I have a new 60% keyboard coming in later this year (parts by parts, sadly – building your own keyboard is a test of patience) which utilizes the layout of the HHKB (Happy Hacking Keyboard) I decided to get used to it in advance. So right now, on my Anne Pro, I’ve remapped certain keys to reflect the HHKB layout. My Caps Lock key is now Control, my \ key has been swapped with Backspace, and I’ve mapped the HHKB arrows to the board as well. The learning curve hasn’t been as steep as using a 40%, but I immediately noticed the benefits of the layout. I can accomplish a lot more with my hands now, while moving a whole lot less than before.

    Muscle memory still kicks in for some shortcuts (Ctrl + Z/W/C/V), instead of backspacing I hit the \ key, and I also keep hitting Control where it used to be + Backspace to delete words. It will definitely take a while before I’m completely comfortable with this layout, but I think it won’t take a long time to do so. Maybe the blockers on the keyboard will help with this issue in the future.

    As yes, you’ve read it right – I have decided to get a DIY mechanical keyboard. Fortunately the model I was interested in doesn’t require any soldering, so it should be a walk in the park to assemble. The bad part is it that all the parts to build it won’t be arriving until August – assuming there are no delays. Fingers crossed! It should be a fun activity that I’m looking forward to. I might even stream the build process on Twitch, we’ll see. I ordered myself a Tokyo 60, Kailh Box Navy switches and GMK Red Samurai to deck the board out. I’ve only seen renders and photographs at this point, but I think it’s gonna be siiiiick. Maybe I’ll get brave enough to learn soldering after this board. We’ll see.

    So anyway, earlier today when I was fumbling around for some hotkeys on my keyboard, I was thinking to myself – is it worth sacrificing how I type currently to relearn a new method of typing? Are the hours put in to learn a new typing style worth the gains when using another? I know I’m not going to be a world record holder at typing fast, and neither am I aiming to be one, so why am I throwing myself all these challenges? I guess I enjoy challenging myself with such menial tasks. It’s like unlocking a new skill in my typing skill tree. Next step would be typing on an ortholinear keyboard, and then maybe learning Colemak or Dvorak.