I have read, though blogs or Facebook, many people's Bucket List, you know the list of things people want to do before they die. I have never considered creating a Bucket list of things I want to do. I don't know why I just never have. But I do have a list of people I want to meet before they die. Kind of like a reverse Bucket List. Some these people on this list I have already met but only briefly. My reverse Bucket List consists of people who, due to the influence they have had in my life or who I have only met in the Internet world, I would like to meet and have a conversation with over dinner. A dinner of a Bucket of beers and Bucket of wings. In no particular order these are the people on my Bucket List.
April and Brandon Richter. They have not really had any serious influence on my life but I met them (April really) through blogging. April always used to leave funny and positive comments here and her posts at her blog were always fun. April and Brandon recently started a business venture call Mischief Brewing Co. I have been following their story on Facebook. They have a Kickstarter Program going to raise some of the initial capital they need. It takes guts to do what they are doing. I wish them luck and I hope one day I can drink one of their beers with them.
Neil Gaiman. I actually met Neil at a comic convention back in the early 90's. I was standing with a comic shop owner that had a VIP pass to a special signing meet and greet. I was kind of ushered into a back room with another group of VIP people. Neil was ushered in through another door and started shaking every one's hands. He muttered a "hello" and I muttered a "I love your work" when someone realized I did not have a VIP pass. I was quickly ushered out of the room. Neil Gaiman, as a comic book writer, was one of the first people to make me feel less like a geek for reading comics. I would have to say that his comic book work lead me to his novels which got me reading books. Neil Gaiman's blog is also one of the first blogs I ever read and it influenced me to start blogging. I would love to be able to meet him over a few drinks or dinner and just talk. Check out his commencement speech at the University of the Arts. It is almost impossible to not like him.
Michael Smerconish-He is now a nationally syndicated radio talk show host but I started listening to him when he was just a local Philly guy. Unlike other talk show radio hosts Smerconish is just right of center on the political spectrum. He does not tow any party line. He presents interesting stories with a focus on facts and offers his opinion not based on political ideology but more on his gut instincts. He has written a half dozen books on various topics with the same approach to his radio show. He has changed the way I view politics, the government as well as the media. I met Michael once at a book signing which I wrote about here , again me just mumbling something. I would like to hang out with Smerconish at a Phillies games with a couple of beers and shoot the breeze.
Nils Ling-Here is a person I met only through the blogger/Internet thing that I would love to meet in person. Even though he is Canadian (Inconceivable) Nils is one of the most clever and wittiest people. He is a writer, a performer, a musician, an actor and has an attitude that I would love to have when I grow up. His style of writing on his blog Truths and Half Truths influenced the way I wrote and still write on my blog. I crossed paths with Nils through various blogs and their comments section including...
Susie's What Was I Thinking. Susie is also on my Bucket List. During the blog explosion of 2005 and 2006 Susie's blog was one of my daily visits. I was living in Florida with very few real life friends that her blog became a great source of community for me. Her outlook and positive attitude also influenced the way I approached my blog writing.
Adam Duritz If there was a soundtrack to my life in the early 90s it would have all been done by the Counting Crows. When I think back to that time as I entered adulthood, the people I hung out with, the jobs I had, the decisions I made, the Counting Crows were always in the background. The albums August and Everything After, Recovering the Satellites and This Desert Life (The cover of Desert Life is also the cover of a Neil Gaiman book, how is that for a weird coincidence?) are so ingrained in my psyche that if I hear a song from them I cannot help but be transported to a certain time or situation. I would want to have dinner with Duritz just to see what makes him tick.
Michael Keaton. He was Batman. He was Beetlejuice. He was Billy Blazejowski. He was Hunt Stevenson, He was Mr. Mom. He was Dogberry. He was Johnny Dangerously. Keaton is my favorite actor of all time. Are there better actors out there? Sure. But Keaton is still my favorite. I think he is extremely talented but even more importantly to me is that he never took himself too seriously. I quote more Michael Keaton lines from his movies on a regular basis more than any other actor. If I had an acting idol it would be Keaton. If I had a chance to have dinner with him I think I would be a blubbering mess.
Amy Poehler and Tina Fey. I know lots of people have a "geek crush" on Fey but for me I would want to have dinner with these two just sit and watch them talk to each other. Two of the funniest people of television with excellent writing and improv skills. I would love to see them a bit tipsy and going at it. Hey now, I mean verbally sparring.
Who would be on your Bucket of Beer list?