Dear 43 Things Users,

10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

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DiamondMindPressure.

I had another lesson yesterday. It was the first since Lesson 13.

I did okay, I guess. It was really rainy and wet and I generally felt uncomfortable. My reverse parking didn’t go too well, though I did do two pretty good U-Turns.

I felt so uncomfortable when we practiced reverse parking in a parking lot, mainly because I was failing miserably and some guy was standing beside his truck, smoking and STARING like there was no tomorrow. It was so bad I wanted to roll down my window and yell, “STOP STARING AT ME!”

It just seems that the past week has been a baffling retort to any self-esteem I may have been gaining. A week full of people pointing out my errors as if I cannot hear. A week full of my own self-conscious screaming and crying and failing to understand, worrying if I’m doing anything at all correctly.

Everything is so new and strange. I don’t know how I feel about it anymore. I think I mostly feel numb. Part of me, the evidently smarter half, is so overjoyed to have accomplished the biggest goals on my list, while the other half is screaming and latching onto whatever tangible object it can in effort to stop from being pulled into this bizarre new world.

Just one more week of training. I can do this. Just a little bit less than a month before my drive test. I can do this. I can do this. I can do this.

This is what you’ve hoped for, dreamed for, slaved for. Stop fighting it.

Breathe. 3 years ago


DiamondMindLesson 13.

I had my final driver’s examination (more commonly referred to as “Lesson 13”) this morning and passed with a score of 76%.

The test is basically a replica of the G2 test I will be doing in the next month, so it’s great preparation. It also needs to be passed in order to finish the driving school and get a discount on your car insurance, so yay.

I made a few silly errors that could have been avoided, and my speed was slightly too slow. But the instructor was very nice and informed me with some tips for when I take the G2 test.

It was kind of weird driving a different car (each instructor has their own). I’m used to my instructor’s car, as it’s the only car I’ve really driven (not counting the family van, which was only once, right after I got my G1). It was easy to get used to though, so I liked it. The instructor also likes the radio on, which mine doesn’t, so that was a new experience as well.

The instructor said if I picked up my speed and was more assertive, I’d likely do well on the G2 test. He said that my reversing and U-Turn were good, but I just needed to look around more. With another month’s practice, I can’t wait to see how I do.

I’ve marked this as complete as a technicality, but because I’m still going to be practising with my in-car instructor until I take the G2, I will continue to post entries about my driving progress.

I fully recommend taking a driving course to anyone. Yes, the in-class portion is boring. But I feel that if you have the right attitude and genuinely want to learn, it won’t be. The main in-class irritation is the moronic sixteen-year-olds who disrupt class by going out for a smoke break or to say things like, “This is effing stupid!”… Ignore them.

The in-car in an incredible experience. You learn a lot, especially if you don’t get any practice otherwise. I needed a lot more lessons than most, and it cost a lot of money, but I feel that it was entirely worth every last penny, and will continue to be for a long, long time. 3 years ago


DiamondMindBusy, busy, busy.

Today was so hectic and jam-packed, but my lesson was successful and enjoyable. I spent the entire time giddy and nervous for my job interview that followed the lesson.

I’m proud to say I did a perfect U-Turn without help, and even reversed into plenty of parking stalls without difficulty. I did take one left turn way too fast and tapped a snowbank while parallel parking.

My instructor actually said I am “a good driver”. How far I’ve come! It’s incredible.

Tomorrow I have the infamous Lesson 13 with an instructor I’ve never met. He will test my abilities on everything my instructor and I have practiced.

After my lesson I had the job interview, which was successful. Then I went to the bank and got the slip I needed for the new job. And after that, I had my first Taxi cab ride! It was definitely a day for new experiences. The driver was nice and used to drive for people in the film industry, which I found interesting. We also talked about driving and the types of people he encountered in his job.

It’s been a really great day. 3 years ago


DiamondMindDCE.

Today I had my Driver Competency Evaluation, which is the first of two tests required to progress to the finish line.

I was pretty nervous. Seeing as the medication (muscle relaxers… sore neck/back/arm/total mess) I’m on causes drowsiness I decided against taking it this morning. Feeling a bit sore, but still much better as the muscles are finally healing, I was prepared for the worst.

Although my arms and legs didn’t want to cooperate with me as much as they could have, I still did pretty well. The only errors I made were with my brain, anyway. I passed my DCE with a score of 40/50, making only ten errors (all of which could easily have been avoided). Either way, I’m incredibly happy to have finally made this ginormous step toward graduating and getting my licence!

I have another regular lesson next Thursday, and then I have my test with another in-car instructor the day after. OHMYGODEXCITEMENT.

My in-car instructor also told me that she’s scheduled my G2 test for the end of March, but we didn’t have time to talk much about it.

It’s actually happening! 3 years ago


DiamondMindBest day so far!

I woke up this morning cold, numb and somehow sore at the same time from my walk yesterday. I felt gross. Even on the car ride to the lesson I contemplated cancelling. I couldn’t feel my arms, my legs ached (so I am kind of out of shape). But I’m super glad that I didn’t follow through!

We practiced so much today, and everything went perfectly! Well, almost everything. I cut a few left turns too wide and hit a snow bank hard while attempting to parallel park. (Thankfully there were no damages!) I did a great U-Turn, my left turns seemed carelessly well executed and best of all – I totally reversed into a parking stall between two other cars without the slightest difficulty! Did I ever think I’d see the day?

So my in-car instructor said that she’d schedule my in-car test with her for next week, and then after that I will have one with a different instructor. If I pass, I’ll be considered graduated! After that, we’ll continue to practice on a weekly basis up until my G2 test near the end of March.

There’s this odd feeling forming in the back of my head and I think it’s the beginning waves of actually tangible freedom. 3 years ago


DiamondMindA bit better.

I think my lesson went pretty well today.

It was Friday afternoon, just as school was getting out, so the traffic was pretty bad. There were lots of school zones and subsequent pedestrians, but also the general angry and rushed weekend traffic. I only got honked at once today.

We practiced left hand turns a lot today, as they seem to be my most current issue. We also practised parking, which went a lot better. I mentioned how it was funny that I can’t drive worth crap yet I can park like no other. It’s good that I’m beginning to develop a sense of humour about these things, otherwise I’d just mope in misery.

I kind of think I’m exaggerating though. I don’t think I’m necessarily a “bad” driver. When I over think things, which is to say everything, I screw up. I drive with a fair amount of ease when I don’t over think it, so I have to practice on that.

My instructor says she’s thinking she’ll set my exam date for the end of March. Later than I originally anticipated, but if I get a job soon I could potentially have a car shortly after the exam (whether or not I pass).

Hopeful. :) 3 years ago


DiamondMindDiscouragement.

I’m becoming exceedingly frustrated with driving.

I can’t have time elaspe between lessons. The longer apart they are, the worse I get. It’s nothing I can’t fix within the lesson, but other drivers are beginning to discourage me more than ever.

I get honked at every lesson. Other drivers scream things, turn their heads as they go past and hold a grimace at me, as if I’m the most disgusting thing in the world, for as long as they can still see me. Am I really that bad to deserve that? My instructor says I am always improving and am close to getting my licence, but we still keep putting off my tests because I’m not yet ready.

I hate that it’s taking me so long to get this. I’ve put so much emphasis on this goal for almost a year now that I’ve thought of little else. I know once I can drive it will open so many other doors. I will be able to go to school with no problems, same with work. Once I buy a car I can start saving for an apartment, and that’s always been the plan, but now I’m so discouraged with my driving and I don’t know how much better I could get. I thought I was good before I started getting honked at so much. I need more practice and I have nothing other than the in-cars.

Hopefully it will get better, but it’s so close that it just seems as if I’m stuck in the storm before the calm… 3 years ago


DiamondMindCancelled.

Stupid harsh Canadian winter, you are completely hindering my driving progress!

So today’s weather went from what seemed decent to insane winter storm in just the drive over to my pick-up spot. My instructor said it was awful and didn’t want to put me through it, and didn’t even charge me the $20.00 last minute cancellation fee, which was pretty awesome. We rescheduled for next Friday.

I don’t like how far apart my lessons are, but I’m happy to have them. Just thought I’d update. 3 years ago


DiamondMindToday's lesson went really well.

It was freezing cold, the traffic was pretty bad, and some of the streets were wet which made it really hard to see, but I think today’s lesson was pretty great!

I did my first pretty good three point turn, and my reversing is improving. My parallel parking is still good. My instructor said the main thing I need to work on is reversing into parking stalls (which also happens to be my current least favourite part of driving).

Next week I might have an in-car test with my instructor. I’m pretty nervous but I’m excited as well. After that, I’ll have another in-car test with a different instructor, and then my actual G2 test… all of which should happen by next month. Fabulous! 3 years ago


DiamondMindArg.

I cut someone off today.

It was stupid. It should have been avoided. It made me feel beyond dumb. And when I begin to feel stupid I get flustered. When I get flustered I lose my ability to process any thought that isn’t sheer panic.

It took me back to the mighty failures of my past; my first job, one horrible semester of high school… things that would’ve been so normal if only I hadn’t freaked out.

All this passes through my mind within seconds and then I panic. It feels worse and worse, and I’m positive the entire world is laughing at me, questioning me, judging me.

The worst part of it was that the car I cut off was that of another student driver.

My panic faded within 10 minutes of silence. I was covered in sweat but it faded along with my overwhelming feelings of idiocy.

They had the right of way, and I just cut right in absent-mindedly.

I’m so afraid of being a bad driver. I’m so tired of hearing that “women are sh-tty drivers” from every guy in my life. It’s an overwhelming stereotype I couldn’t bear to live up to. I must pay more attention. I must not feel.

I am too hard on myself. It’s been awhile since I wasn’t positive about something. I’ve been trying my hardest to remain positive but, for lack of a better term, today just kind of sucked. I should be fair to myself, though, I at least did well on the highway.

I still need to work on hill parking, reversing and three point turns.

Edit, several hours later:

I don’t feel very bad about this anymore. I still feel as if it was a silly mistake and a bad habit that I do not want to get into. I won’t delete this entry, however, as I wish to work on not being so hard on myself when I don’t do things correctly. 3 years ago


DiamondMindThe highway.

Yep. Today I drove on the highway, and twice, at that.

It started off scary, but the weather was fairly nice today at least. There was quite a bit of traffic but it was easily avoidable. It felt petrifying to go 100KM/Hr, but it didn’t take long to adjust to it.

I feel pretty proud of myself. I only got about four hours sleep last night and somehow managed to hurt my right wrist, so doing well today was somewhat of a surprise.

After leaving the highway for the second and final time, we practiced lane changes and left turns through our usual route, and went to the subdivision to practice three-point turns, hill parking and parallel parking.

I was doing a three-point turn (it’s always the three-points that people bother me with) when some kid stopped beside me, and waited impatiently by revving his engine constantly. This really irked me and my instructor as well. But we breathed and decided to forget about it by practicing parallel parking, which went really, really well! I did it twice with only a bit of verbal guidance near the end. It was awesome.

Still need to work on my reversing (into parking stalls, mainly) as it is pretty abysmal. My next lesson is Monday, so hopefully I’ll be able to do more parking and go on the highway again.

This time last year I’d have never expected to be a, dare I say, good driver. I would have probably gone into heart failure upon hearing that I even got my permit. This is definitely one of the main, if not only, things that have made 2010 a decent year for me. The progress has been slow, but I’m beginning to see the reward, and it’s beautiful.

Cheers, 2010. 3 years ago


DiamondMindNight driving.

I’ve been so busy with the holidays that I haven’t had time to write about my driving lesson last night, and I’ve been dying to!

Last night I had another double lesson, but it was my first time ever driving after dark. I was kind of nervous, but really excited. We practised parallel parking, stall parking, three-point turns, emergency stops, and turns – basically everything. It was a bit hard to see the road and lights at times, and the lights on some cars were absolutely blinding. Traffic was pretty bad due to last minute shoppers, but it wasn’t as awful as I had anticipated.

I was doing a three-point turn in a snowy subdivision and as I was halfway through a car came and waited for me to finish. My instructor said to just pull into the driveway ahead of us as to let him pass, but he just sat there staring at us! So I suggested that maybe this was his house. I reversed and drove away, and when we looked behind us we saw the car go into the driveway… LOL. Oops.

My instructor says I’m improving rapidly, and am becoming a very good driver. I could have cried! I’m so happy that I’m doing well. We talk a lot about my tests and it finally seems like they’re nearly within my grasp. Just a few more months….

Anyway, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, everyone! :) 3 years ago


DiamondMindHoliday shoppers.

Today I had a double-lesson, which was an additional lesson added to my usual one. This was because my Tuesday lesson was cancelled due to the awful weather we were having.

Driving today, in noon traffic and close to Christmas, was a very new and interesting experience for me. The streets were so crowded, it was slow moving and stopped often. I got honked at three times by two different Scrooges people. It freaked me out. One guy in a pick-up truck honked twice (long and spastically) at me because I was waiting for two pedestrians to cross the road before I made my turn. >=/

We practised parallel parking again. I didn’t completely make it the first time, but did well the next two or three times I tried. I also practised reversing into a parking stall in a slushy parking lot as well as left and right turns.

Next week I have another double, but it’s in the late afternoon, so it will be getting darker as I drive. I’ve never driven at night, so I’m pretty excited for it! 3 years ago


DiamondMindGetting there!

I had my second lesson of the week today. The snow was worse than last time, but it wasn’t too bad.

I practiced left and right turns, parallel parking, stall parking and driving in deep snow. I’m feeling so much more confident in my driving and my instructor said it’s really showing!

She also said that if we kept practising twice a week, I could probably go for my test by February. That is SO EXCITING! 3 years ago


DiamondMindWinter driving.

I woke up this morning to see several inches of snow blanketing everything outside. After uttering a plethora of tired cuss words through my morning coffee, I was not feeling good about having to drive today.

But, surprisingly, today was one of the best lessons I’ve had since my five-month absence. My turns were better, I hardly panicked and I took things slow.

Holiday shoppers are a newfound irritation to me, however. I was attempting to back into a parking stall in a large lot, already nervous, when I hear a long honk. I turn to see this old woman who had lurched out of nowhere freaking on her horn at me.

I just hope that when I am an experienced driver like her that I will remember what it is like to be driving in the car with the big, incredibly noticeable “STUDENT DRIVER” sign atop and have patience. It was kind of funny though.

My driving instructor actually said I am quite a good winter driver! How sweet. I definitely needed the encouragement, and it’s great to hear that I might not end up as disastrous as I’d imagined. 3 years ago


DiamondMindSick.

Today’s lesson was okay. It was my first time ever driving in snow, which of course made me nervous but it was alright. I started feeling really sick near the end of the lesson and even had to pull the car over and take my coat off. I haven’t felt well since. Just a stomach ache accompanied by nausea.

I failed trying to parallel parking twice (but succeeded the third and final time). That was about the extent of my doing poorly. My turns were okay, but I really need to work on them. Same with changing lanes and hill parking. I didn’t feel confident today.

I wish I hadn’t gone without lessons for five months. I didn’t have any money and neither did my mother, so we couldn’t afford to purchase more until just recently. With the in-car lessons being the only time I am able to drive, I only get one or two days to practice a week.

I’m thankful for the experience, and that I have a patient instructor who encourages and helps me. I just feel a bit exhausted.

Hopefully next week’s lessons will go better, or at least without illness. 3 years ago


DiamondMindSo close.

My in-car lessons are the only opportunity I have to drive at all. Being without them for five months really stunted my progress and I am a bit behind, but I am improving.

My instructor is preparing me for the course in-car test (which I have to pass to get my certificate) as well as the G2 test. I’m completely terrified. This is real. This is really real. It’s finally here, and it feels similar to the weeks I’ve spent studying before exam weeks.

I’m petrified but my excitement over-rides it. It dawned on me while in the driver’s seat today that it’s going to happen soon. My instructor is reviewing me and gearing me up for it. Things could finally go right for me. My life can finally start.

I can’t wait. 3 years ago


DiamondMindBack on track!

I recently purchased a few more desperately needed in-car lessons. I’m really looking forward to getting lessons again, because I have no other opportunity to practice driving. It kind of stinks to have a parent who is entirely unsupportive of the fact I have to grow up sometime, but I’m not going to look on the negative side of things.

I have a few lessons for practice, and then I have to complete the in-car test that will conclude my driver’s ed. course. After that, my instructor will schedule my G2 test and we’ll warm up for an hour or so before hand. This should be happening within the month.

I am beyond excited! 3 years ago


DiamondMindFive months later...

Finished in-class, finished online, and nearly finished in-car.

I need to buy more in-car lessons. I don’t have anyone else besides my instructor who is willing or able to take me out to practice, so I would like to gain just a little bit more confidence behind the wheel before I do the final in-car test (which I have to do in order to pass the course and subsequently go for the G2 test). 3 years ago


DiamondMindUntitled

Finished the in-class portion! Now I just need to complete all of my in-car lessons, which will span over several months (probably the next seven or so, after which I am eligible for my G2 licence). 4 years ago


DiamondMindUntitled

I found a course I’d like to take. It’s very expensive but it will be worth it in the long run. I haven’t signed up yet, having just requested a brochure in the mail, but it starts sometime mid-April, so I’ll likely have this goal on its way by then. 4 years ago


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