Five everyday things that I’ve never done before

A car driving along a winding road.

As I mentioned last week, I’m planning on doing a 40 before 40. I love a challenge so intend to do all of them between my 39th and 40th birthdays. That’s a lot to pack into 52 weeks, so I’m beginning to make my plans now.

Obviously, they need to be completely new experiences, so here are five everyday things I’ve never done before.

Had a driving lesson

Yep. I’ve never sat behind the wheel of a car and have never wanted to. There are several reasons for this, including a healthy fear of causing accidents and the fact that it won’t be as fun as Mario Kart.

People tell me I’ve missed out, but I’ve managed without a set of wheels for well over 20 years. Maybe I’ll have a lesson to see what all the fuss is about.

Seen all of the Star Wars films

I know, I know. Until my kids started showing an interest in the galaxy far, far away the only Star Wars film I had seen was Phantom Menace. And not in its entirety either. There was a direct correlation between the introduction of Jar Jar Binks and the telly being switched off.

I’ve now seen all of A New Hope and The Force Awakens and bits of Empire Strikes Back, but that’s it. Of course, I know everything that happens, but only vicariously. Maybe I should remedy that before I’m as old as Yoda.

Been in a betting shop

While I’ve taken part in office sweepstakes and played the lottery, I’ve never placed a bet. I wouldn’t know how to either. I’m sure it’s a straightforward process that can only have been simplified by the rise of gambling sites and apps, but I’ve never tried.

The thing that really intrigues me is what the inside of a betting shop is like. What lies behind the pictures of Chris Kamara? Can you watch Champions League games for free? And what’s with the tiny pens I’ve seen people emerging with?

Smoked a cigarette

I have absolutely no intention of changing the status of this one. Smokers don’t like other people’s smoke and I have asthma so puffing away on something that would make me wheezy would be stupid.

I’m just including it in this post to be smug. I’ve never had as much as a drag on a cigarette and am really rather pleased with myself!

Read the Harry Potter books

Much like my situation with Star Wars, I have a pretty good idea of everything that happens and have been told by countless people that I’d love the Harry Potter books. But I have yet to read them.

They came onto the scene as studying English Literature was beginning to kill my love of reading and my older two kids are only really approaching the right age now. Perhaps I’ll give them a go once I hit 39!

Which everyday things have you never done?


  1. John Adams

    Tom, you’re not going to start investing in a funeral plan or increase your pension contributions? Are you mad????

    Everyday things I’ve never done include a parachute jump (did the training but the weather turned), dated Taylor Swift or survived six months on a tour of duty on a nuclear submarine.

  2. Tom @Ideas4Dads

    Goodness I’m so behind with everything. I didn’t even know 40 before was a thing. As I turn 40 next month I think I’ll have to do a 50 before 50nwhich will fit in beautifully with my kid life crisis I am developing successfully as we speak….

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