Well first, I am not planning on dying anytime soon. Based on the way I eat, train, and lack of medical problems, some of these online calculators don't kick me off this Earth for another 50-70 years. I got two great grandparents that made it to the 100's, but I have others in my family that didn't make it past their thirties. So you never know when your card is going to be pulled.
I have had the pleasure and the gift to have traveled to six of the seven continents on this Earth through many countries, many more cities, and countless villages. I've seen literally millions of people. I've seen the strength in humanity, and the weakness of humanity. At my job I've seen countless deaths, and unfortunately off duty I have seen countless deaths as well, including some of the people closest to me. So on a night like this as I write this and I look back, I wonder if I had any kids, or anyone really that wanted to know what I thought about life and what advice I would give on living in this wonderful world, what would I say?
The thing I would say I think would surprise many people, and that is,
WATCH LESS TV.
Most people probably think from my blogs I'd say to travel, see the world, workout, eat good, maybe more deep like spend time with your family or people you love. But I wouldn't say that. To me that's common sense, exploration is a birth instinct, so is health and love. And maybe for some people travel is not an option, or they don't enjoy the gym or whatever. In 2003 as I was set to enter the police academy in a few months, I quickly realized that I'd have to cut bills since at the time and unfortunately now as well the starting pay in the NYPD was so low. It was easy then to say, ok, I don't need cable. At the time it was definitely a minor hassle, but I was working so much it didn't matter terribly, I was bartending, working on an ambo, and working in the gym. During the academy I wouldn't have side jobs, and after cops are not allowed to bartend in NYC at all, so good bye cable. It was a minor hassle.... But little did I know how much it would change my life.
On the money end, I've saved over $10,000, I don't know the exact number because since I haven't watch TV in over 12 years I don't know how much cable costs. I am not in a total tunnel, I have netflix and occasionally watch it while I eat lunch if I'm alone. But if lunch is done first the show can be watched later, I go to the movies as well, and definitely watch movies on any flight over 3 hours! But if I miss whatever is the hottest show now, I could care less. And it's beyond money, the joys and things I have gotten to do from not having TV is priceless.
I think back to 2003, and I think the last popular TV show I watched was the Soprano's, rest in peace James Gandolfini. The Soprano's was a great show on HBO. And if on my next 10+ hour international flight it's an option to watch a season of it, I surely will. It'll pass the time. But when I remember 2003, if I could go back and to it all again, as great as the show was, I wouldn't watch a single episode. 2003 I was testing for the NYPD, I was working on an amublance and that was the first year that I did CPR and actually brought the patient back with the crew I was working on. 2003 was the first time I visited -at the time a foreign place to me- called Arizona, which to this day I now call my home. The fun times I had with friends who I'd never see again, taking the fire department test, training in my old gym, learning to flair bartend, the girls I dated, dinners or coffee with my Mother, places I explored even just in New York City where I lived that are no longer there. Of all those moments I had in 2003, if I could go back, I don't think I'd need to watch the Soprano's again. And I'm sure had I watched TV in the last 13 years I'd feel exactly the same about any show.
So if I die, my small favor for the readers of this blog, friends, and family. Watch less TV.
***Bonus for direct family members, U2 Windows In The Sky played at my funeral or memorial, not my fav U2 song but it will be for my death.