5 Things I Wish I Were More Knowledgeable About

NikitaAt the start of the month my brilliant web designer friend, AJ Emm (I hope I can consider her my friend), came up with a fun blog challenge that attracted me instantly: 31 Lists in 31 Days. I love lists and I love challenges so I signed up on day one. And then promptly forgot about it. Not atypical behaviour.


I’ve never been a rule follower when it comes to these things. I think it is because in my real life I have to obey every single rule I come across, even the one about eating asparagus with one’s fingers, that being a rebel online is my only outlet. Repression. It works in mysterious ways.

Regardless, today’s list was actually supposed to be about 5 Halloween costumes. Since I am not a Halloween fan and the only costume I’ve ever enjoyed was the year I dressed up as Charlie-Brown-dressed-up-as-a-ghost I decided to rewind a bit and check in with the list from day three.

5 Things I Wish I Were More Knowledgeable About

1. Cat behaviour. There are dozens of seminars offered in every city on understanding one’s dog and interpreting canine body language, but why are there never similar lectures on figuring out what the heck your cat is trying to tell you when he is climbing the curtains at three in the morning? Even the books are fairly limited. It’s an area in which I feel like a complete dunce.

2. Quilting. I’ve always wanted to learn a craft and learning to quilt has always had an almost romantic appeal. There are so many hidden symbols and traditions and as a historian I am fascinated by the centuries old practice. Unfortunately, I barely have the patience to learn how to sew on buttons.

3. The French Language. I feel as a Canadian I should be able to speak at least rudimentary French. Much to my humiliation I forgot most of it after high school and even my reading has degraded to nothing. My lack of ability was noticeable when I lived on the East Coast, next door to Canada’s only true bilingual province. Je m’appelle Unilingual Moron.

4. Writing. I would really like to take a writing class, even just an online one for fun. There is so much I have to learn about mechanics and story building. I never even took a single English class in university and I regret that now.

5. How to Play a Musical Instrument. Music has always been important to me but other than fiddling around with my electric keyboard as a child and one six week session of guitar lessons I’ve never been able to play much worth mentioning. I’d like one day to be able to sit down at a piano and hammer out something other than “Oh Susanna.”

All of this navel gazing has gotten me thinking about how much my desires have changed over the years. Ten years ago I was terrified of cats and certainly never envisioned living with one. I wish I could say my dog at the time took precedence – featured in the photo above – but poor Nikita was even barely on my radar. Nope, instead here is what this same list may have looked like a decade ago. Ah, 2003…

5 Things I Wished I Were More Knowledgeable About at Age 21

1. Driving. I still don’t know much about it, honestly, other than the fact I am terrified every time I step on the accelerator. But back then I was naive enough to think I would get over my fears one day.

2. Moving to Ireland. Yeah, I am not even going to touch that one. Man, did I live in lala-land back then.

3. Sex. Because I hadn’t had any yet a the time. At this point, I have nothing to hide.

4. The Political System of Belarus. I remember being in a panic over my Comparative Politics class December of that year. I had one semester left and was determined to keep my 3.9 GPA. I have no idea why now.

5. How to Dance. Yep, never really learned that skill either but back then it seemed important.

What about you? What 5 things do you wish you knew more about?

11 thoughts on “5 Things I Wish I Were More Knowledgeable About

  1. Oh my, I’d have to go back nearly 4 decades to get to age 21 and I doubt I could remember what I wanted to be more knowledgeable about back then! But now?
    1. Applied Animal Behavioral Science
    2. Canine Psychology
    3. Hollywood’s Golden Era (I’m a Bogie-and-Bacall fan, Cary Grant, Irene Dunne, and Claude Rains fan, among others)
    4. FDR, in my opinion one of the best USA Presidents of the 20th Century
    5. Winning the Mega-Millions Lottery. (Wouldn’t we all?!) 🙂

    Funny you should write about AJ’s blog/list challenge — I’d been thinking of joining in, but figured I’d never have the time. I was right, of course.


  2. I don’t know that I could think of five things just sitting here, but I agree totally about learning about cats. I caught a show called, “The Cat from Hell.” Where this guy gives suggestions to owners of these whacked out felines and it worked. That’s the closest I’ve gotten to learning about cat behavior, other than my own observation. And I still don’t have a clue! lol


  3. Well i think your writing skills are just fine.
    1. I wish I knew how to make money as an artist.
    2. I would like to learn more beading stitches
    3. I really need to learn to drive our RV

    That’s all I can think of


  4. I would like to relearn the violin (I played in middle school and wasn’t great, but string instruments are now my favorite to listen to and I think it would be cool to play now that I have a deeper appreciation for it.

    I still want to visit Alaska…just to see if it is as great as I think it would be to actually live there.

    Drive around in an RV through all the states – hiking and camping out.

    I’m going to copy yours and say quilting too. While I can sew a button back on – it is NOT pretty.

    I’d also like to learn to draw. There’s something about it that is so calming – although my pictures never ever look like the actual object I am trying to draw.

    I agree with Roxy the traveling dog – your writing skills are pretty great considering you didn’t have any classes at University.


  5. I really like this cat body language infographic: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/200691727118336881/. But considering dogs even have a body language ap (http://doggiedrawings.net/post/68187474854), it’s not much.

    I can’t come up with a good list of things I wish I knew more about. My entire sense of self is invested in being a mile wide and an inch deep. I know just a little bit about almost everything. If I learned more about anything, people would expect more from me than pleasant cocktail party chatter. 🙂

    BTW, I think you’re smart to find driving scary. I do too. In truth, it’s the most deadly thing any North American does. And yet everyone freaks out about sharks and airplanes. How logical is that?


  6. What a great list. Almost all of yours from 2013 are ones I would like to take. I have always wanted to learn how to quilt (and knit, but my mom finally gave up trying to teach me). I have already played an instrument (Baritone), but always wanted to learn guitar and piano. cat behavior is definitely a mystery and while I have also taken a writing class, I was never as serious about it as I am now. I learned Spanish in high school and retained quite a bit, but I would love to be fluent.

    I also wanted to live in Ireland. It’s on my bucket list of places I would like to visit. My mothers paternal grandparents came from Ireland so maybe I feel a calling?

    A side note: I can completely relate to not being a rule follower, especially online. Maybe that’s why I could care less about knowing all the things that most bloggers seem to care about: SEO, making money, doing lots of product reviews, etc. I’d rather focus on writing and educating the public on dog body language. Ya know what I mean?


  7. I love list posts too; they’re so much fun to put together. 5 things I wish I knew about are…
    1. dog training and behavior beyond what I’ve learned with our dogs
    2. small business, web design, SEO and PR
    3. politics and the sociology behind what makes it drive all of us crazy
    4. crafts – I love what people are selling on Etsy
    5. negotiating – I’m completely lost here

    And I wish I knew a few languages. I’d like to get back my Spanish, learn Dutch, and Cherokee.


  8. Next time I’m in Montreal and i have to tell someone I don’t speak French I’m going to say “Je m’appelle Unilingual Moron” instead, *just* to see the reaction I get (they’ll hate me for being an Anglophone anyway, so why not).

    And if you’re actually interested in taking an online class for English, I highly recommend Ryerson’s courses. I did their copyediting one and it was really good, I learned a lot (and I took this course post getting my BA in English!) and the prof was super nice.


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