I know this isn’t how the saying goes. The old, overly ambitious axiom is; “live each day like it’s your last”.
But that just isn’t practical.
If you know it’s your last day on Earth you’ll do extremely dumb things such as:
- Quit your job.
- Tell a long-time romantic crush you love them, then unexpectedly KISS them.
- Go climb a mountain with no previous mountain-climbing experience.
Then, when the next day comes and you are not dead, you’ll be left:
- Wanted by authorities for sexual harassment charges
- Exhausted near the bottom of a mountain.
That’s no way to live.
So I have a better idea: live each day like you just lost your wallet.
Sure, you’ll spend the first part of it retracing all your steps and arguing with everyone who was with you that it is not lost but simply “misplaced”. But once you realize it is, in fact, LOST (and misplaced) and you overcome the denial that it could “not be”, you will transform into the pinnacle of productivity.
Your first call will be to cancel your credit cards, which, given the current level of indebtedness of most Canadians would be a good idea for most of us ANY day. During that call you will realize it’s also a good idea to call credit bureaus Equifax and Trans Union to put a “warning” on your account. This way, should anyone try to apply for credit on your credit there must be a phone call placed to YOU first (hopefully you didn’t lose your phone with your wallet). Then you will go into your bank to get a new debit card, where they will force you to change your PIN, which you hadn’t changed either “ever” or since the last time you lost your wallet. Then you will go to the license office to obtain a temporary driver’s license, which will start the process of getting your new, slightly-less-temporary license in the mail and replace your health card so that no one steals your identity, drives like a maniac and then gets free surgery. Then you’ll call all creditors you have ‘pre-arranged credit card payments’ with and explain that you have lost your credit cards so you can’t pay for anything until further notice, whereupon you’ll realize that you weren’t getting much use out of those things anyway (like that Maclean’s subscription) So you will never renew these pre-arrangements, at which point this day has pretty much paid for itself.
Finally, you’ll renew things that you want but don’t necessarily “need”, like your Aeroplan, Air Miles and Nexus cards (for me these are actual needs) and you will explain to the various coffee shops you were on the ‘frequent coffee-drinker club’ with how you were “on the free one”. Then they will all give you free coffees!
Then FINALLY finally, you will go buy a new wallet. Which is actually more of an old wallet in that it is big, bulky, holds lots of cards (for free coffee) and is, most importantly, difficult if not IMPOSSIBLE to lose since it weighs 7 pounds and doesn’t really fit in your pocket. Which means you won’t be able to take it with you anywhere. Which will also save you a lot of money.
So, to those of you who want to “live each day like it’s your last”, well, have a good life. For that one day.
For the rest who want to realize how much can actually be accomplished in a day, do yourself a favour and pretend you lost your wallet. Or better yet, send it to me and I will lose it for you. You’re welcome.
Steve Patterson is an award-winning comedian and host of CBC Radio One’s “The Debaters” and HGTV’s “I Wrecked My House”. He is currently at his home in Toronto awaiting delivery of his replacement Aeroplan card. More information at stevepatterson.ca