Sunday, November 13, 2011

Before I Die...

Last night the never ending work on the F train forced me to take a detour to downtown Brooklyn en route to Manhattan. Instead of taking a snail paced, herky-jerky shuttle bus, which always leaves me dizzy and impatient, I begrudgingly decided to take the half hour walk. I carried flowers and a bottle of wine for a friend's birthday dinner, sweat in my purple wool coat, and sighed loudly as I stomped.

But then I came upon these words, this wall. The rainbow colored dreams of downtown Brooklyn.

...go to Paris. a teacher.
...have a happy life.
...make music.

Thousands upon thousands of endings to one unfinished sentence: Before I die I want to...

It stopped me. It made me think. If I only had one piece of chalk, one fill-in-the-blank space to keep a no longer secret wish, what would I write?

What would you write?

A little more about the Before I Die project by artist Candy Chang:

It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day and forget what really matters to you. With help from old and new friends, Candy turned the side of an abandoned house in her neighborhood into a giant chalkboard where residents can write on the wall and remember what is important to them. Stenciled with the sentence “Before I die I want to _______”, the wall became a space where we could learn the hopes and dreams of the people around us.


  1. I am jealous of things like that in cities - not many places in my rural town to put up a giant chalkboard. I don't know if I could narrow down all the things I want to do to just one word.

  2. ...touch as many lives as possible.

    What a thought provoking question. I love the art project!

  3. Oh man, I love that idea. I have so many things I want to do, but right now on my mind is to implement this artist's idea in my own city!