It is what it is: Should have, could have

“You should do that,” a friend was telling me.


We were talking about swimming more than once a week, and she was suggesting that I join a group that swims early on Friday mornings.

Normally, when someone suggests I do something like that, I will run through the reasons that I can’t — logistics, other commitments, not enough time, or maybe it’s something I just don’t want to do.

This time, my answer was a little different.

“You’re right, I should,” which I quickly followed with, “but I probably won’t.”

So, while other people have honey-do lists, to-do lists, or bucket lists, I now have a “should-do” list.

I started it a couple of weeks ago, but it’s already getting pretty long — shovel the driveway, do some laundry, eat healthier, exercise more, do more with my family, the list goes on.

I just don’t want to have too many “should dos” turn into should have dones.

For example, earlier this winter I got a new pair of skate skis. At the local sports loft, they explained that the base model was durable, but the mid-range model, while still durable, was also lighter. At the time, I was thinking that I should save myself a few bucks and go with the base model. After all, I don’t often ski for more than an hour at a time, and I’m not so good a skier that a few ounces of weight on each foot it going to make a difference.

Then I did the 20-kilometer race at the Tour of Tsalteshi, and somewhere around the 16-kilometer mark, started thinking that I was wearing the heaviest skis ever made. Perhaps the climb up one of the longest, steepest hills on the course was contributing to it, or maybe it was the fact that I really should’ve done a lot more training before tackling that race, but I think I should have gotten the lighter skis.

There’s a lot of other things I should do.

I should finish working on my canoe. I started working on a wood-strip canoe before my son was born. He turned 17 this past week.

I should, apparently, do more mountain climbers — the exercise where you get in a push-up position, and sort of run in place with your legs. I did a workout the other day that included mountain climbers, and it was not pretty. Yup, I should do more of those.

I should put away the Christmas decorations. I should paint the house this summer. I should get the travel trailer ready to sell. I should figure out how the features on the new email system at the office work.

And I don’t think I’ve ever felt like I should not have bought a new bike, or gone for a ride.

This past week, coming up with a topic for this column was at the top of my should-do list.

Fortunately, I’ve been able to cross that off my list — though putting a little more thought into it might be something that I should have done.

But I just hit 500 words, and no one really wants listen to me ramble on about the things I should do, so I think I should wrap it up.

Reach Clarion editor Will Morrow at


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