Tonight I went out and saw Zootopia, Disney’s (not Pixar’s!) newest animated family film. I remember laughing at the trailers a few months ago, and after seeing a pile of good reviews I decided to just commit to the $10 investment in my entertainment.
After spending double the ticket price on two beers and a bag of popcorn, I nestled into my single seat in between a gaggle of teenagers and a stereotypical American family of 4. Kid kicked over my popcorn about 10 minutes into the film, but thankfully I was more protective of my beer. Just have to say, whoever decided to sell beer at movie theaters is a genius and I want to shake his or her hand.
In any case, the film was quite good and well polished in typical Disney fashion. It never seems to help their stock price when I own it, but I digress. The plot was well constructed, and delved a little bit into noir mystery drama with a couple nicely placed twists and turns. Each character was an animated living metaphor (DMV clerks as sloths for example) that both played exactly to your preconceptions and also subverted them when necessary. Ultimately it produced a story about perseverance, individualism, and acceptance that flies in the face of a modern world that doesn’t care much about encouraging these sorts of things. It’s not all that subtle, but it is effective, and I left the movie feeling quite satisfied with a full dose of catharsis and positivity. I don’t care if it’s a family film, feeling empowered and happy are emotions I could stand to have more of.
There’s one catchy song sung by Shakira both early in the movie and during the ending credits, titled: “Try Everything”. It’s very poppy and upbeat, and it really just kind of stuck with me, especially since I’m on the verge of launching my own new experiment in the form of publishing my book. It got me thinking about my life and all the things I still want to do before I die.
It might sound morbid to mention death, but I don’t think so. We all live, we all die. We have a limited number of days to call our own. It is that limited window that pushes us to strive for more. To really embrace life for everything it is. It’s something I’m only starting to learn. But when I got home I bought the soundtrack to the movie, I walked out into my backyard, and I just sat in the grass and watched the stars for a few minutes while I listened to this song.
So I put together a little list in my head of things I want to accomplish before I die. If it takes 7 years to become an expert in some endeavor and I’m (almost) 29 years old, then I have at least 8 or 9 more things I can master in my life. So in no particular order, my “bucket-list” circa March 2016:
- Become a successful aerospace engineer (check)
- Become a bestselling author (in-progress)
- Become fluent in a second language (in-progress)
- Run a championship-winning racing team
- See the earth from outer space
- Learn a musical instrument and write a song about my life
- Paint the sunrise from the top of a mountain
If I play my cards right and I get dealt a nice hand, I might even be able to finish this list off in the next decade. I won’t even be 40. Life will be amazing.
I wonder what your list would look like if you wrote one? It’s never too late to start. That’s the beauty of being alive. Each morning is a new morning, and the paths we follow, while winding, unknown, and painful at times, never fail to deliver us to exactly where we ought to be.