April 9, 2013

10 Places You Must See Before You Die

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Thought Catalog Flickr
Thought Catalog Flickr

1. America

Known to natives as “land of the free, home of the brave,” America has something for everyone. If you want to see cool buildings, you’re in luck — several of America’s most famous cities are full of buildings. Looking for a great local bar? Simply head to the middle of any Midwestern town and look for a sign that says “Red Lion,” or “Tiki Palace.” Itching to try some of that old Yankee Doodle cuisine? All major American highways are lined with tantalizing options — we recommend the legendary restaurant Arby’s (say it: ARR-BEEZ).

2. Ocean

Ocean is a large hole, filled to the brim with pulsing, salty water. Return to your fetal roots and take a dip in the comforting intrauterine bath that brings life to the world and allows clouds to form and whales to survive. Other fun activities include looking for mermaids, wondering why sand dollars aren’t worth a dollar, and gazing onto the endless gray infinite while contemplating your mortality.

3. The Moon

No vacation is complete without a long stare at the night sky. Crane your neck from side to side until you spot a mysterious, shining orb. This is the “moon,” a legendary ball of rock that hangs from the ceiling of the sky on invisible threads. Please note: “moon” is often confused with “sun,” as both are round and fairly bright, like the eyeballs of the Greek gods. One simple way to tell them apart: are your retinae burning? That is not the moon.

4. Pasta with Parmesan

King Solomon’s riches. Cleopatra’s beauty. Pasta with Parmesan. Often called the “Venus de Milo of the Twenty-First Century,” a steaming bowl of buttery pasta — lightly salted, sprinkled with curls of fresh Parmesan and a crack or two of fresh pepper — is a thing of beauty and a joy forever. Please note: con artists have been known to trick tourists into paying good money for bowls of curly small noodles in a colorless broth, attempting to pass it off as pasta con Parmigiano, but it’s actually a cheap knockoff called Ramen.

5. Not the Inside of a Hospital

If you have never seen the inside of a hospital, you have probably led a great life, with the exception of (eww) your home birth.

6. Jupiter’s Core

Have you ever wanted to be crushed into an exquisite diamond by out-of-this-world pressure and strange gaseous substances? Nothing is better than a Tiffany’s ring — except maybe a glittering rock composed of your very own body. We’ll bet good money that your soul’s in there, too.

7. A Graveyard in the Snow

If you really want to feel like an artist — or the Phantom of the Opera’s next victim — take a stroll around your local burial grounds the next time it snows. It’s a life-changing experience: the deep silence, the soft gray of the tombstones shimmering through the snowflakes, the stone angels with their temporal crowns of white, the strange snow-covered lumps on the ground that cannot be confirmed or denied to be dead bodies… Wear running shoes, carry a fanny-pack full of dehydrated fruit, and safety-pin a note to your jacket that says “Please do not bury me without medical confirmation that I am deceased.”

8. A Really Spaced-Out Baby

Not much is cuter than a baby drooling on his dad’s arm, totally spacing out and quite possibly high. Hi there, lil’ fella! Whoops, looks like the dad has a gun in that holster. Time to get out of Indiana!

9. Bros Talking Shop

Big fan of performance art? Catch some neo-absurdist comedy at your local coffee shop/gym/18+ club by eavesdropping on the bros talking shop! You’ll laugh until the tears flow at gags like, “We’re really taking the initiative by reaching out into formerly untouched markets,” and “Can you recommend a great distributor with the skill sets I’m looking for?”

10. Facebook’s Deactivation Screen

If you’ve never attempted to free yourself from the soul-sucking claws of Facebook, can you really call yourself an actualized human being? Give it a whirl sometime — it’s fun to pretend that you have free will in the Internet Age. But be warned: Facebook’s deactivation screen is manipulative and strange. In a last-ditch effort to maintain your valuable business, Facebook will show you a series of random “friends,” insisting, “They’ll miss you!” But they won’t miss you. They won’t miss you at all. TC mark

Tori Telfer

Tori Telfer is terrified of dark mirrors and has read 2666 twice. Please tell her that this makes her the Jorge Luis …

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