Tuesday, July 4, 2017

BUCKET LIST UPDATES No. 330, 331, 332, 333, 334, 335, 336, 337 and 338!

A little over five years ago, way back in March 2012, I kicked off a project that I called my “Bucket List Project.” The idea for the project was simple: I made out a “bucket list” of things I’ve always wanted to do and planned to do one item a week and write about it on my blog. Usually, I would post 500-word updates about the project on my blog each Monday. This year, especially during the past several months, I’ve gotten behind, but during the past week, I got the chance to play catch-up. This post should get me up-to-date and back on track for this coming Monday.

BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 330: Read “Vicksburg,1863” by Winston Groom: As many of you know, I’m a big Civil War buff. Earlier this year, my son and I visited the National Battlefield at Vicksburg, Miss. One of the best books about the Civil War events at Vicksburg is the 2009 book “Vicksburg, 1863” by Alabama author Winston Groom. I began reading this book on March 30 and finished reading it on June 4. I thought it was great and highly recommend it to anyone who wants to learn more about Vicksburg during the Civil War.

BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 331: Watch “Andersonville” (1996): Again, I’m a huge Civil War buff, and it’s somewhat irked me for a long time that I’d never watched one of the best-known Civil War movies ever produced, the 1996 movie, “Andersonville.” The original movie was first shown as a TV mini-series on TNT in March 1996, but you can now watch the entire thing in one sitting thanks to the DVD version available through NetFlix. I watched it from start to finish on June 17 and thought it was great. I also highly recommend this movie to anyone with an interest in the Civil War.

BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 332: Watch “3:10 to Yuma” (1957): One of my favorite Western movies is 2007’s “3:10 to Yuma,” which is based on an awesome 1953 short-story by Elmore Leonard called “Three-Ten to Yuma.” At some point, I read that there was a 1957 version of the movie out there and I wanted to be sure to watch it too, so I added that movie to my bucket list several years ago. The 1957 version starred Glenn Ford and Van Heflin, and it was definitely worth watching. I officially watched it from start to finish on June 21.

BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 333: Read “The Giver” by Lois Lowry: One of my favorite Web sites is the “Art of Manliness,” and several years ago that Web site published an outstanding “best of” book list called “50 Best Books for Boys and Young Men,” which ranked “The Giver” by Lois Lowry at No. 15. This book was published in 1993 and won the prestigious Newberry Medal in 1994. I added this book to my bucket list several years ago and finally started reading it on June 26. I finished it the next day.

BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 334: Visit Charleston, South Carolina: Charleston is one of the most historic cities in the American South, and I’d always wanted to see it for myself. During a recent family vacation, my family and I spent the day in downtown Charleston on June 28. Charleston reminded me of several other old Southern cities that I’d been to over the years, including Savannah, Ga., New Orleans and Mobile, Ala. While there, we visited the Charleston City Market, which has been around since 1804, and ate a delicious lunch at the Charleston Crab House.

Downtown Charleston, South Carolina.
BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 335: Visit Fort Sumter: Again, I am a huge Civil War buff and there are few Civil War sites more famous than Fort Sumter, where the first shots of the war were fired. While in Charleston on June 28, we took the ferry ride out to Fort Sumter and explored the old fort for about an hour before we had to return. For me, out of the hundreds of bucket list items I’ve already scratched off my list, this one was a personal biggie. I’ve always wanted to see Fort Sumter for myself and it did not disappoint.

Fort Sumter, South Carolina.
BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 336: Watch “Alice in Wonderland” (1951): Three years ago, I read Lewis Carroll’s 1865 book “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.” Most people nowadays are familiar with this book thanks to the famous 1951 animated Disney version of the tale. When I got to thinking about it, I couldn’t honestly say that I’d seen the 1951 movie version from start to finish, which is why I added it to my bucket list. This movie is generally considered to be one off the greatest of Disney’s animated classics, and I watched it from start to finish on June 30.

BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 337: Listened to The Clash’s “London Calling”: In 2003, Rolling Stone magazine published a “best of” list called “The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time” and ranked “London Calling” by The Clash No. 8. This album was released on Dec. 14, 1979 (when I was just three years old), and I have to admit that I am not that familiar with The Clash’s body of work. On July 2, I listened to the entire “London Calling” album several times throughout the day, and enjoyed being exposed to music that I couldn’t remember ever hearing before.

BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 338: Watch “The Nightmare Before Christmas”: This interesting stop-motion animated film was released in October 1993 and is based on a story by Enterprise, Alabama native Michael McDowell, who collaborated with famous Hollywood director Tim Burton on the project. This movie is a little over one hour long, and I watched it from start to finish on July 2. I get a big kick out of Halloween-themed movies, and this one certainly fits the bill, even though it also includes a heavy dose of Christmas. If you’ve never seen it, I highly recommend it. It’s rated PG.

According to my records, I am now up-to-date on my bucket list project and plan to get back on track this week with another 500-word update on Monday. I don’t know which bucket list item I’m going to scratch off this week, but my goal is to get it done before I go to bed on Sunday night.

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