July 20, 2009

30 Things to Do Before 30 (got 9 only)


1) Go travelling (done)
Trust us, the minute you get settled into a career the likelihood of being able to take off a considerable amount of time to go travelling diminishes rapidly. After university, before starting a new job, take the chance while you've got it - you'll regret it if you don't...

2) Get something published (done)

3) Watch these films (eerrr...selected)
If you want to avoid being left out of every drunken discussion just before last orders are called, then the following films are required viewing:
Goodfellas, Pulp Fiction, Scarface, The Star Wars Trilogy (don't bother with the new ones), Godfather parts I and II, Psycho, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Trainspotting, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Top Gun, American Pie, Gladiator, The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Blade Runner, Kill Bill 1 & 2, City of God, The Deer Hunter, Se7en, Fight Club, Back to the Future, Alien and Aliens, Jaws, This Is Spinal Tap, Die Hard, Life of Brian, Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day, Ferris Beuller's Day Off, Life is Beautiful, The Breakfast Club, Grosse Pointe Blank, Stand By Me, Chinatown, The Great Escape, The Outsiders, and Tango and Cash. Well, maybe not the last one.

4) Live in London
Not everyone thinks moving to the capital is for them, but few people regret it when they do. A great place to establish yourself in your chosen career and get some fantastic life experience, London is a truly great city with some of the best sights and nightlife in the world. It's also great for watching live sport, eating great food and shopping. And remember, when you finally move away, everywhere else will seem like a quiet, stress-free, inexpensive Utopia.

5) Learn a second language
While your average Bulgarian street-sweeper seems to be able to speak about six or seven languages, we Brits are pretty poor when it comes to learning to speak in a foreign tongue. In fact, many of us can barely speak English. Knuckling down at school and in your twenties can give you a massive advantage in life, especially if it's an in demand language such as Chinese or Arabic.

6) Run a marathon
Running 26.2 miles might seem like hell to some people, but trust us, once you get started, it soon becomes addictive. Plus it will get you in shape and sort your diet out. Approach with caution and always consult your GP before starting a new exercise programme, but once you commit yourself we guarantee your life will never be the same again.

7) Drive the pacific coast highway
We realise that this could have been filed under 'go travelling' but three of us here at MSN UK will be heading to California to do this in the coming months (not together, we don't like each other that much) and we like to brag...

8) Have sex
This sounds like a given, but according to statistics around 7% of 30-year-old men and women are still virgins. And it's nothing to be ashamed of - you might be saving yourself for the love of your life. But really, you don't know what you're missing out on...

9) Go to a music festival (done)
Going without a bath and sitting around in the mud for three days isn't everyone's cup of tea, but you won't know until you've tried it, will you? Here in the UK we're spoilt for choice when it comes to worthy festivals; Glastonbury, Reading, Leeds and T in the Park is just the tip of the iceberg.

10) Try different foods (done)
You might not like the look of foods such as oysters, snails and cuttlefish, but there is a reason they are so highly valued. You never know, you might just enjoy them.

11) Get on the property ladder
Easier said than done, we know, but it's a buyer's market at the moment and more and more of us will come to rely on bricks and mortar to replace something that we're heard older people call 'pensions'. Nope, we'd never heard of it either?

12) Test yourself (love this.but there's no place i know...;p)
Skydiving, abseiling, bungee jumping - never in a million years, you might think, but there are few better things for you than stepping out of your comfort zone and standing up to your fears. So whatever it is you think you can't do, we promise you'll feel proud of yourself after you've done it?

13) Visit Paris
The most romantic city in the world? Go find out for yourself.

14) Blow £500 in one night
Don't make a habit of it, and never spend more than you can afford, but if you do have the readies, then there are few better feelings than going out with a huge wad of notes in your pocket and knowing you are going to spend all of it.

15) Get a savings account...and use it!
Not the most exciting bit of advice you'll ever get, we know, but setting up a savings account and drip-feeding some of your wages into it every month is the best way to save for holidays, your first car, or that ?00 night out?

16) Do something for charity (done)
Whether it is running a marathon, attending an event like Live Earth or sitting in a bath of baked beans, we can all do more for charity. Just pick your cause, and off you go.

17) Get yourself on telly
Andy Warhol said we'd all get 15 minutes of fame, but for most of us 15 seconds would do. Swinging your arms around at Glasto like a maniac, sitting in a studio audience or getting accidentally papped, where will you get yours?

18) Eat at a Michelin starred restaurant
Britain is no longer the laughing stock of Europe when it comes to top-quality restaurants, so there's no excuse for still thinking of Pizza Hut as 'fine dining'. There are now more Michelin starred restaurants in the UK than you can shake a carving knife at, so get going. Incidentally, I haven't eaten at one yet so if anyone wants to take pity on an impoverished journo like me?

19) Quit your job
Just stick with us, this really is going somewhere. You know how we said you would only have one chance to take off travelling? Well, we lied. If you're fed up with your job, or just want a change, the solution isn't just going to just hit you on the nose. Take off for a while and get your thoughts together, you might even find inspiration along the way.

20) Go to a live sporting event (watched Philippine Team vs. Brunei Team - soccer)
Why wait until the Olympics come to the UK in 2012? Even if you are not into sport, going to watch a major event such as Wimbledon, the Six Nations rugby or the FA Cup Final is an experience in itself. So what are you waiting for...

21) Have a weekend in New York
With your friends, family, or other half, there is no better experience than watching the world go by in the Big Apple and feeling like you are in every film you have ever seen.

22) Read these books
You may need 30 years to read them all, but try and make your way as through as many of these as possible: The Catcher in the Rye, 1984, Romeo and Juliet, the Harry Potter series, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, To Kill a Mockingbird, Brave New World, On the Road, Catch 22, Trainspotting, The Wasp Factory, Lord of the Flies, Fahrenheit 451, Animal Farm, Of Mice and Men, Great Expectations, Tess of the D'Urbevilles, Treasure Island, The Beach, Cloud Atlas, The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Ulysses, For Whom the Bell Tolls, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, Life of Pi, The Shining, The Handmaid's Tale, A Prayer for Owen Meany, The Shining, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, A Suitable Boy and many, many more.

23) Own a convertible
Before the inevitable sensible motor with the kids' car seat comes along, invest in something with a bit of street-cred and enjoy your freedom while it lasts. Which isn't long.

24) Buy something really expensive
When was the last time you really treated yourself? So long as you can absorb the damage, go crazy and spend at least one month's wages on something you really, really want.

25) Buy wine worth more than £50
At some point you are going to have to graduate from drinking cheap plonk to actual alcohol. And even though you don't have to spend that much to get a good bottle, it's nice to find out what a really good wine tastes like. And when it's as expensive as this, you are unlikely to buy too much of it?

26) Sign up to Facebook (done)
It's the social networking site that is spreading like wildfire and chances are you are already a member. If not, then Facebook and other sites like it are a great way to catch up with friends you thought you had lost touch with. Unless you hate them all or are on the run, in which case you could start a blog instead (under a false name, of course).

27) Record your family history
Your parents and especially your grandparents are a unique link to the past, so find out all you can from them and write it all down - there will come a point in life when you want to find out where your family came from and what they did while they were here.

28) Sing Karaoke (done)
Singing is a great stress-reliever, regardless of how good your voice is. Singing karaoke is a great way to boost your confidence, just as long as you remember that most people will be as tone deaf as you are.

29) Have a complete health check
You don't have to be old to get a serious illness, and investing in a full body MOT could save your long-term health or even your life. You may, for example, be one of the one million Brits with undiagnosed diabetes or be harbouring a condition that will cause you major problems in later life.

30) Climb a mountain (haha...done so many times :))
There is no reason to stop at 30, of course, but climbing a mountain (taking all the necessary precautions along the way) is one of the best ways to see some of the world's greatest sights. And when we say mountain, we don't mean 'hill', so a gentle stroll up 300 feet doesn't count...

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