Bucket listers beware: Oprah is in her final season

Monday was the debut of the final season of “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” which is bad news for die-hard fans with a bucket list.

For Oprah fans, being part of the studio audience in Chicago is equivalent to visiting Mecca, except this holy land only allows a very small fraction of devotees to visit.

Even though reservations to the live show are nearly impossible to get, my best friend and I scored two seats in May for the final taping of Oprah’s nineteenth season.

Wait, it gets better. We sat a mere three rows away from both Oprah and Dolly Parton. For an East Tennessee gal with an Oprah addiction and a history of asthma, I’m fortunate to still be breathing.

If I had a bucket list, going to the Oprah Show would have been on it.

“The Bucket List” is a 2007 film, and I believe there are a bunch of movie executives who wish they had a dime every time someone used that phrase. They might have beaten “Avatar” for highest-grossing film.

The two main characters of the movie, played by Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, traveled the world and accomplished their lifelong dreams before they “kicked the bucket.”

Fulfilling my Oprah dream created a combination of anxiety and elation, which almost killed me. In fact, the two guys in the movie died. These lists might be bad luck.

Whether they are cursed or not, I don’t need another list or more buckets. Currently, I have buckets for a mop, toy trains and puke. I also have a couple of buckets in the garage that have been caked in sand since before BP’s oil washed ashore.

I manage several to-do lists on a daily basis. Right now, all I really want is rest and peace, so when I kick the bucket, consider it mission accomplished.

Most of all, I just want my husband and kids to know that loving them and caring for them, right down to washing their underwear, was a sacred honor. Complaining about it was just an excuse to take long baths.

I also would want my girlfriends to know that I allowed myself to eat great food, even at the expense of a thicker waistline, and I never cried about it.

I experience an abundance of simple joys everyday, so I am protesting the bucket list in favor of reality.

Even as I sat in one of those infamous red chairs at Harpo Studios in Chicago, I realized this is simply Oprah’s job. She teased a co-worker about being skinny and confessed to needing a vacation.

After the cameras stopped rolling, Oprah asked us if coming to the show was on our bucket lists. She told us that since we had been to the show, it was time to “dream a bigger dream” for ourselves.

If someone came to watch me at my job because it was on their bucket list, I would flat out tell them to “get a life.” Then, I would hand them a mop to go with that bucket.

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