BRENT STOLLER

Writer. Peanut butter and chocolate enthusiast.

If You Had One Day Left to Live, How Would You Spend It?

“Let each thing you would do, say or intend be like that of a dying person.” — Marcus Aurelius

Live every day like it’s your last.

That’s a common cliche you hear when it comes to getting the most out of life.

Which is why in this video, I go through, step by step, what I’d want my final 24 hours to look like.

I hope you’ll play along at home.

If you’re unable to watch the video, its transcript is below…

TRANSCRIPT:

Live every day like it’s your last.

That’s a common platitude I’ve heard for years, the idea being that you’ll get the most out of your life if you live like there’s no tomorrow.

I have mixed feelings on this, and I’ll get to those in an upcoming video. But I do believe this cliche has some value.

So for this video, I want to go through, step by step, what my final 24 hours on Earth would look like.

The basic ground rule is that this has to be a semi-realistic day.

I’m not allowed to fly to California to play golf at Pebble Beach or anything like that.

And just so you know where I’m coming from, I put this together by thinking first about people.

Who would I want to be with?

Then I figured out what I might enjoy doing — and of course eating — with them.

So…let’s get started.

Man spreading his arms in triumph on the top of a mountain

My Perfect Last Day

Morning

I’d need energy for my big day, so I’d sleep as late as I can, until I wake up on my own. Which, at my age, is about 7 a.m.

My wife, Emily, and I would get up together and go for a walk around the neighborhood. That’s probably something we don’t do enough.

Then we’d have breakfast.

When thinking about your last day, your meal selections are arguably the most important decision you’re going to make. And this selection was not easy.

But if I only get one more breakfast, I’m going with a chicken biscuit from Chick-fil-a and hash browns from McDonald’s.

I love fast food, and those two items are at the top of the fast food breakfast hierarchy.

Runner up?

Two chocolate iced Krispy Kreme donuts with chocolate milk.

Second runner up?

A plate of bacon.

After breakfast, I’d play golf with my dad. I love golf, I love my dad and I love golf because of my dad.

My mom could ride in the cart, like she used to during my junior tournaments. And if the spirits in the sky wanted to bless me with a hot putter and a birdie on 18, I wouldn’t complain.

Afternoon

For lunch?

This was tough.

Barbecue? Mexican food?

I couldn’t go wrong with a number of options, but I’m going with the first thing I thought of:

A double bacon cheeseburger and fries from Annie’s Hamburgers, the place I’ve been going to since I was playing tee ball.

Afterward, schedule permitting, I’m watching a Texas Longhorns football game.

UT athletics have been such an important part of my life — that’s something I want to get into in a future video, my sports fandom — but it’s hard to imagine anything better than sitting around with my closest friends and family, and watching the Horns play.

It’d probably be the only time in my life I’d get to experience the pure joy of being a fan. Because even if they lost, I wouldn’t have to worry about waiting for next year.

Night

Come dinnertime, I’d want my friends and extended family there, like our wedding.

The menu would be steak, cooked medium-rare, twice baked potatoes and King’s Hawaiian sweet rolls.

For dessert?

My mom’s brownies and milk.

Once the food is finished, I’d say my goodbyes to everyone but my wife and immediate family. I’d need some quiet time with them, so we could laugh and reminisce together.

I’d ask my brother, who’s a rabbi, for tips on making it in the afterlife.

I’d thank my dad for all his support and the incredible example he’s always set for me.

With my mom, I’d decide on where, if all goes to plan, we’d one day meet again in heaven.

How I’ll get through telling them goodbye, I have no idea. But let’s assume I do.

Late Night

For my final act, it’s just Emily and me, on our couch, holding hands while watching our favorite episodes of “Seinfeld,” “Scrubs” and “30 Rock.”

There’d be no room for sadness, no need for dramatic soliloquies. Just the two of us, in our natural state.

And inevitably, as I do pretty much every night these days, I’d start to doze.

Only this time, I wouldn’t have to worry about waking up to brush my teeth.

So that’s it.

That’s my last day on Earth.

Of course, if Emily gets her way and I make it to her 100th birthday,

My last day won’t happen until I’m 104, meaning:

  • All of my friends and family will likely already be gone.
  • I won’t have an appetite.
  • And I’ll be able to move little more than my eyelids.

But hey…a guy can dream.

*****

This originally appeared on The Mission.

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