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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change my name for a year


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Marcia BartoloUntitled

Well Isabel Reuß it’s actually my second and third names but it’s different then Marcia Bartolo ahah

But I’m finding it difficult to do because I have to correct people constantly and my friends are starting to think I’ve maybe drunk I little too much on NYE :D 4 years ago

lanne0814I changed my name 30 years ago

I legally changed my name 30 years ago when I was about to enter religious life. That lasted only six months; but the name stuck and is still my legal name to this day! 6 years ago

Buster BensonSeptember 8th...

was my 1-year anniversary of changing my name. At first, I said that I would change it back. That was before I started a company with the name. Now it would be a little weird to go back. That said, I would like to eventually bring my old name back into the fold… perhaps as middle names. And who knows, I might add a name or two on at some point in the future as well… 7 years ago

Buster BensonPassport... finally!

I finally got around to renewing my passport with my new name. I just didn’t feel like sending in all this paperwork and waiting weeks and weeks. And so I delayed months and months. But then I decided to just expedite for an extra couple bucks and make it all happen. Because I think traveling out of the country is in my near future… but where, I don’t yet know. 7 years ago

2BeTamedNot this year

Maybe next year I’ll try this one… I do want to have my name legaly changed to what I use now and get rid of my middle name all together for personal reasons. I will do that this year. 7 years ago


Wow, I just read through the entries for this goal and I’m extremely excited. I’ve always kind of wanted a boy’s name, but always thought it was too weird to change it, since I’m not actually transgendered and don’t want to confuse people. I will admit I have a bit of a sentimental attachment for my childhood name, and it’s prevented me from being able to commit to a permanent name change, but I would love to try it out for one year! The idea simply hadn’t occured to me before.

On Monday I will go down to the courthouse and get information on what I actually have to do to get a legal name change. I live in a small Southern city and I imagine there will be pounds of red tape and strange requirements. Once I’ve figured that all out (and the cost) then I’ll decide whether or not I will actually be able to go through with it. 7 years ago

janeandroseChanged My Name

I changed my name to have my partners middle name and she did the same..

The process was easy. did it for us and it took 60 days. 7 years ago

damioninalaskaStep one Complete

I went to the Anchorage Alaska Courthouse last week. I got the information on changing my name. Yes, looks like a pain in the ars-but I’m definatley doing it. I have a long histiry of expending years of time completeing goals. From the research I’ve done, I cannot change my name to a number. I wanted to change it to a hexadecimal value: 1101 that will never go through, but “Eleven O One” is acceptable. The experiment will be complete when I hear “Dr. Eleven O One, report to the E.R.”. after that, I’ll change it back. 8 years ago

Maggienot for me

This project kind of turned into something different compared to what I thought the original spirit of the thing was. Not a bad thing, but I am not really feeling it anymore for myself. 8 years ago

stellansdifferent me

It sometimes made me feel as though I were two people, because while I told everyone in my everyday life as well as my friends online, I didn’t tell my parents. But it was surprisingly easy to get used to answering to a totally different name. And I do mean totally different! And fun. I’ve seriously thought of changing my name legally to the new one, because I like who I am as that person. Which is a little weird, but true. 8 years ago

Buster BensonStep 2: Drivers License

Another easy one. Ten minutes, ten dollars. I just took these things to the DOL that was again on my way to work:

  • The certified copy of my name change order
  • My old license
  • My old passport (not sure if they needed this or not)

It cost ten dollars, and I waited 5 minutes for them to take my photo and print a temporary drivers license. 8 years ago

Buster BensonStep 1: Social Security Card

This one was easy. I printed out the form from this page, found the nearest office (which was on my walk to work), and brought:

  • The filled out form
  • A certified copy of the name change order
  • My passport

I waited in line 2 minutes, and was out of there in 10. My new card comes in 2 weeks. 8 years ago

Buster BensonIt's official

As of 10:10am on September 8th, 2006, I am officially stamped and sealed with approval as Buster Butterfield McLeod. :)

When the judge read my new name, he started laughing. Everyone in the room including myself started laughing. It was a great birth. All new lives should begin with laughter.

The new Buster has yet to tell a lie. I want to wait and make sure it’s a good one. The new Buster is going to taste food for the first time in about half an hour.

It’s a clean slate… everything is new and good. Go! 8 years ago

Buster BensonFeeling absurd (in a good way)

I went to the name change place and got the form and then I was like, “Okay, now what?” I hadn’t yet decided on a first, middle, OR last name. I was on the spot… I had called my bluff. So I borrowed a quarter from Vladimir and flipped it in the air and asked her to call it. She said, “Heads for McLeod, tails for Butterfield”. It landed heads. That was my opportunity to change the course of fate and veto for Butterfield, but the whole reason I’m doing this (okay, maybe 30% of the reason) is to sort of face uncertainty, confusion, and absurdity head on. And to make it official as something I want to face head on… to me it feels like a Bar Mitzvah for lost souls, or a baptism into the absurd. McLeod it is.

I tried texting Leanne to make sure she was okay with this name and unfortunately there was no reception in the building! So I felt a little forsaken and knew I had to make the decision on my own, not unlike Jesus on the cross you might say.

I was going to toss a coin again for my first name, Buster, Muppet, or Benny, but I decided to just go with Buster. Benny was a bit of a cheat because people sometimes call me that, and Muppet I vetoed simply because it was a bit too weird. :)

So, the first name is intentional, the last name is accidental, and like that I have one foot in my own decision-making and one foot in chance, and I guess it sort of means something to me that way.

The next line was to state the reason for the name change. I was going to just say, “Because I want to” but I felt like I had to be more specific than that. I put “for artistic reasons”... sort of in line with a realization that I had on the vipassana retreat, and that was that a noteworthy goal is to develop and express a personal aesthetic… whatever that happens to be. It doesn’t mean that I’m an artist, it just means that I should strive to do everything I do in my own style. To succeed and fail beautifully and with dignity intact and foxes and whales and hot air balloons and my friends encouraging me even if the whole thing is a little dumb. Life is dumb (in a good way).

After all of that, the judge wasn’t there to sign the papers, so I have to go back tomorrow morning. But the hard work is out of the way. We’ll see what happens next! 8 years ago

Buster BensonAAAAH!

Vladimir the Polar Bear is driving me to the name change shop in about half an hour and I’m going to change my name. Changing passports, mortgages, credit cards, social security cards… all of those seemed like fine and sort of fun in a masochistic sort of way. But I don’t know yet what I’m going to do with usernames and email addresses…

As Maggie has taught me to say… “That’s tomorrow’s Buster’s problem.” Is that the first sentence I’ve ever typed with three apostrophes in a row? 8 years ago

Buster BensonIn Washington State...

It costs $100 and takes 6-8 weeks. (forms and things)

This is a good site with a funny list of rules and a checklist of places you’d need to update (if you wanted to be very thorough), as well as good general advice.

I’m still alternating between thinking this would be really funny and sort of a pain, to being really funny, sort of a pain, and too much work. It sure would be fun to cross this off my list though. 8 years ago

Buster BensonA strange thought.

How much of my personal identity is embedded in my name? Last night Maggie and I considered the possibility of changing our last names to Butterfield. And getting a few other friends to change their last names as well. It really is the perfect last name, isn’t it? And, coincidentally, the last name of one of my heroes. Stewart, would you mind if we borrowed your name for a bit? We could collectively start a new group identity as “The Butterfields”.

Changing your name seems like a big move. But is it really? I guess it is a bit of a big pain in the ass… at least, if you want to update all of your credit cards, your passport, etc. Is it more or less permanent than marriage? Is it more or less permanent than getting a tattoo?

To throw in another twist, what if we only changed our name for a year? And then, at the end of the year, changed it back? Like a little name vacation. See what it’s like to be a John for a year. Or a Timothy. Or a Benny. Benny Butterfield? Haha.

What’s the point? Well, now that the goal’s on my list, the point is to cross it off my list. Everything on your list has a point… that’s the magic. 8 years ago

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