Now that my 60th birthday is approaching, I’ve been starting to look back at some of the things that I always meant to do but that, to be realistic, it is now too late for. Some of you, I know, are still young, so take this as advice from an old man, and learn from it.
I meant to learn Sumerian well enough to have written a powerful, moving, life-affirming novel that would have been hailed as a work of genius by the three people able to understand it, and that would have been instantly translated into four other dead languages.
I would have liked to raise a horde of mounted warriors and lead them on a plundering expedition across central Europe.
I wish I’d gotten around to building that time machine so I could have gone back and listened to the Grateful Dead closing Winterland, December 31, 1978.
I always wanted to discover a portal into a parallel universe in which everything is just like it is here except that bunny ears and propeller beanies are standard business-wear.
I wish I’d finished the schematics for the teleporter.
I kept meaning to re-invent mathematics in such a way that the deepest mysteries of the universe became trivially obvious, but I always seemed to be doing something else.
Somehow, it was just never the right time to turn into an immortal demi-god breathing fumes of Argon gas with volcanoes erupting at my whim and travel the universe leaving a swathe of destruction in my wake.
Ah well. If my advice saves just one of you from these sorts of regrets, my life won’t have been entirely wasted.