Ever tried something that everyone else seems to love and then wondered what the fuss was all about?
Or ever tried something and thought to yourself, OMG nooo this is NOT for me, can’t say I’ll try that again…?
I’m just hoping that I’m not alone when it comes to some of these things that I’ve done (or tried) once and never done ever again, and have no intention of doing ever again. This is my ultimate “once was enough” list.
As with all these listicle posts I write (like 22 Things in Life I’m Absolutely CRAZY About, 18 Things I Can’t Stand (That Everyone Else Loves), 11 Weird Phobias I Have (or Things I Do) That You Might Find Bizarre), I HAVE TO STRESS THIS FACT: they’re just a bit of fun.
[Reading time: 7 mins]
I KNOW that there’ll be things here that many other people will get great enjoyment out of, and I’m not knocking anyone’s choices. In fact, do them more and enjoy them more! We’re all different. At least you know that there’s more for you if I’m not doing it…!
But what things have YOU tried once and not since? Any on my list that you a) have never tried ever, b) have tried once and never again like me, or c) think is bloody brilliant and can’t understand why I wouldn’t want to do it again and again for the rest of my life?
Let me know in the comments what your “Never again” things are – I’d love to know.
(And in case you’re surprised to see me “back” – I know I’ve been absent here for a while – I’ll explain all in my next blog post. Which shouldn’t be anywhere near as long as this last break took…!)
Anyway – here are my:
9 things I did once and will never, ever do again…
1. Drinking whisky
What in the holy hell drink of Satan IS that stuff? Maybe I shouldn’t have tried one of the most notoriously strong whiskies to start with – Scottish Laphroaig – but OMFG WITH HEMINGWAY BELLS ON that was, without doubt, the WORST food or drink I have ever tasted in my LIFE. No contest.
Why would anyone drink that stuff?! WHY?? WHY???!!!!!!!!
2. Having a pedicure
I’d resisted having a pedicure until two summers ago because a) I’ve always managed to do my own mani-pedis pretty well myself, and b) I’m worried that I wouldn’t be able to keep my feet still because I am really, REALLY ticklish.
Guess what? I was right to have avoided them. I had my first-ever pedi in 2021, and I was so beyond ticklish it was embarrassing. I jerked my foot so often I’m amazed the lovely girl who had the misfortunate of being allocated my feet managed to get ANYTHING done to them at all. I literally sat there squirming, grinding my teeth and tensing as hard as I could to try and keep still.
Safe to say, it didn’t work. Remember Wile E. Coyote getting electrocuted in the Road Runner cartoons? Yep, that was me.
3. Watching Fifty Shades of Grey/Twilight
=She shakes her head at the mere thought of having spent 4 hours 7 mins of her life watching them=
Let’s just say I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. But with IMDb ratings of 4.2 and 5.3 respectively, I really should have heeded those who put themselves through the torture before me. But yes, ladies and gentlemen, they really are as bad as they say they are.
Let’s start with Fifty Shades… If that was meant to be raunchy then let’s just say I’m less of a prude than I thought I was. Two solid hours of waiting for the raunchy stuff to happen… and then the credits rolled. That was the entire film, done. Some things have to be watched out of curiosity (like the appalling SATC reboot And Just Like That), but this isn’t one of them. At least there are two sequels that I can actively avoid – I’m happy in the knowledge that my life is far richer as a result.
And Twilight? Julianne Moore was right when her character said in Crazy, Stupid, Love that she watched it by herself and (cue whining voice) it was “SO bad…”. I wanted to hide behind the sofa I was so scared. Not because they were vampires, noooo. I was scared by the wooden acting and the terrible dialogue. #SomebodyPutMeOutOfMyMisery
(Strangely, in the same way that I love Daniel Radcliffe but can’t stand Harry Potter, I think Robert Pattinson is a great actor. If he’s in it, I want to see it, like Tenet or The Batman. Just not those twinkling vampires movies, of course.)
So watching the numerous sequels of either of those? I’ll pass, thanks.
4. A trip to Las Vegas
Big disclaimer: I did not dislike Vegas. Keith and I went as part of our two-week West Coast trip to the US in 2011 and really enjoyed the two days we spent there. I just… don’t want to go back ever again.
It’s definitely a been-there-done-that kind of place, and I am glad we went to have had the experience and know what it’s really like. But to go again when I’ve just, kinda, done it already? Nah, I’m alright.
5. Swimming in the sea
Cue cries of “Huh? What? Swimming in the sea is, like, totally normal?!“. I get it, this is a very normal thing for a lot of/most people. Your honour, I put forth two compelling arguments for why I’ve never attempted swimming in the sea since swimming in the Gold Coast surf on a family holiday to Australia in 1982:
a) I got caught in the surf and my skinny, 9-year-old featherweight frame was rolled over and over until I couldn’t tell which way was up. I thought I was going to die. I swallowed loads of salt water and since then, as you can imagine, the thought of ANY seawater going near my lips fills me with horror and dread.
b) The sea is usually freezing, and swimming pools are usually not freezing. And pools are usually cleaner (I stress usually). And pools don’t have spiky creatures on the bottom that might stab/sting your feet or worse, kill you.
Therefore, I have stuck to swimming in swimming pools and haven’t got more than up to my ankles in seawater ever since. But what about scuba diving, you say?! That’d be a Nope with a capital “P”…
6. Going on a light aircraft flight
Now to me, I thought there wouldn’t be much difference in the fear factor between flying in a light aircraft and flying in a helicopter.
Oh, Catherine. You dear, sweet, naive child.
We went to NYC in 2009 and went on a helicopter above the city – I loved it, and I was even sat up front next to the pilot. No fear whatsoever (remember I am absolutely PETRIFIED of heights: ladders, those long London Underground escalators, staircases on the sides of buildings, etc. present a huge problem for me). So when we went to the US again in 2011 and visited the Grand Canyon, we OF COURSE had to see it from the air. We decided to do the light aircraft tour as we’d already done the chopper in NYC.
Keith videoed the flight, and he caught my reaction on camera as well. I think he must have known what my reaction was going be, because as we started to pick up speed on the runway he turned the video camera towards me, catching me going from excitement to sheer horror in the blink of an eye.
It was so rough and noisy that I thought the plane was going to fall apart. It was shaking like nobody’s business the whole time, but taking off really was the worst bit. And I normally LIKE take-offs on planes. I do sort of remember enjoying the flight – my fear was abated a little because of course the Grand Canyon is like nothing else on earth – but do I want to travel on a light aircraft ever again? You’d have to drag me on, kicking and screaming. Or just take me to the nearest heliport.
7. Reading a Dickens novel
I’m so sorry, Charles. I tried. Several times, and with several different books. After leaving school I set myself a target of reading all the classics, from Pride and Prejudice to Jude the Obscure as I regretted not taking English Literature A-Level. But for someone who loves the classics, I just couldn’t get into Dickens. I can’t understand why, because I LOVE Dickens adaptations on TV. The BBC does Dickens like no other. I still remember how much I loved Our Mutual Friend with Anna Friel way back in the 90s.
Now I know I said things I tried once for this listicle, but I tried Great Expectations, Our Mutual Friend and (I think) David Copperfield. I found them all a hard slog and I gave up several pages in after wondering how long before I’d finish the damn thing. As I said, I’m so sorry to Charles and the great writer that he was. It’s the one I feel the most guilty about, but I think I’ll stick to Thomas Hardy for the reads and Dickens for the TV adaptations.
Note: see also Moby Dick. Sorry Herman, but there are only so many descriptions of whales I can take. I prefer my whale with a side of Gregory Peck.
8. Going skiing
Maybe I’m wrong to go by my experience as a gangly, awkward nearly-13 year old, but I can’t say there was really anything about my first and last times on the slopes that made me want to go YES! SKIING IS FOR ME!!
Disclaimer: I don’t want to knock the fact that my parents took me on, what was, a lovely skiing holiday in Switzerland in 1985. We stayed at my uncle and aunt’s chalet which they had at the time, and all in all we had a great time.
It’s just that, as an adult, skiing is going to be quite expensive. We don’t know anyone with a holiday home in any skiing resorts, the gear will cost a lot to either hire or buy, and we’re so far removed from “made of money” that a weekend in Skegness is more on our current scale of affordability. And anyway – if I’m going to spend money on a holiday, I want WARMTH. I want to soak up the sun and enjoy temperatures far greater than those you normally see on a wet June afternoon in Blighty. All that snow, all that gear, all that après ski just kind of leaves me (for no want of a better word)… cold.
Excuse me while I stifle a yawn here… Sorry about that, I was just thinking about knitting. Thinking back to when I tried it aged roughly 14? 15? when my mother tried to get me interested in it, herself being a keen knitter. Now, I can sew – rather, I at least know how to use a sewing machine, doesn’t mean I really do it all that much – and I’m generally a crafty person, but knitting was, like, Nope. Just didn’t do it for me IN THE SLIGHTEST.
In fact, the sweater that my mum encouraged me to knit for myself c.1987 was an oversized, blue and white wide stripe affair with cotton bouclé yarn, and it sat half finished (well, I say half… more like one-fifteenth finished) for YEARS. I’ve no idea what happened to the lump of knitting needles poked into the ball of wool and two sad stripes of knitted sweater in the end, but ironically I would have LOVED it if I’d ever got round to finishing it. It’d be so retro I’d even consider wearing it now.
Was that enough to make me want to go back to it and give it another go? Hell, no.
✷ ✷ ✷ ✷ ✷
Just as a kind of afterthought, I thought I might add some honourable mentions. But rather than things I’ve tried once and never again, these are never tried and probably never will. Writing this post got me thinking about stuff I don’t want to try. Again, this might ruffle some feathers(!), but who cares, the thought of doing the following leaves me – like the skiing – somewhat cold…
Things I’m not gonna try anytime soon:
Golf. I’d rather just go for a proper walk.
Understanding the rules of cricket. Most ridiculous rules ever.
Watching a Harry Potter movie. I can’t take more than 20 seconds.
Going to a hen party. I’ve so far managed 50 years of never having been to one.
Visiting Dubai. Human rights records aside, it looks horribly devoid of culture and soulless to me.
A hot tub. Sitting half naked in a bubbling miniature pool with other half naked people? Awkwardness personified.
Skydiving. Do I need to explain?!
Your turn – what things have you tried once and thought, “never again”? Are any of the things on my list your favourite thing EVER?! Tell me in the comments…
Stay safe XOXO
Linking up to… Monday: Stylish Monday (second Monday of the month), Inspire Me Monday, My Glittery Heart, On Mondays We Link Up || Tuesday: Style With a Smile, Trend Spin/Walking in Memphis in High Heels, Turning Heads Tuesday, Spread the Kindness, Confident Twosday, Happy Now Blog Link Up || Wednesday: WowOnWednesday || Thursday: Chic & Stylish, Ageless Style Linkup (third Thursday of the month), || Friday: Neverending Style, Fancy Friday, On the Edge, Fabulous Friday’s Link Up
I completely agree with the light aircraft. I went on one when I went to the Maldives and I was terrified!
Danielle | thereluctantblogger.co.uk
I totally agree on the whisky, it’s vile! I’m not keen on swimming in the sea unless it’s warm and shallow (I hate being out of my depth because I sink like a brick). I tried scuba diving once and was petrified. It took me 10 minutes to stop hyperventilating (not good when breathing affects your buoyancy!). I’ve been in a Cessna plane a few times when my dad was learning to fly and had just got his license. I agree, it is quite unlike being on a commercial plane. I thought it was like being in a 2CV with wings.
I’ve never been skiing, and while I’m curious, I think I’d rather spend my time and money lounging on a beach or by a pool. And when it comes to cricket, well, I didn’t have the foggiest about the rules until I got together with Pete who’s a massive cricket fan, Our first holiday was in Sri Lanka watching a test match with his Barmy Army friends. A few months later we went to New Zealand for more cricket, and when Isobel was 16 months old we went to Australia to watch an Ashes test match. I’ve had to learn a lot of the rules just to make it more interesting! Cricket fans are total nerds though! The good thing is that test matches are often in nice locations!
I’m with you on nearly all of these: Las Vegas, knitting, skiing, whisky and 50 Shades. Fun read, thanks for sharing at #WowonWednesday x
I share your views on every single one of these except swimming in the ocean (native Californian here) and knitting. I also have a poncho that is 90% finished sitting in a bag by my chair for 15 years now. Once every few months, I think I will finish it while sitting in my chair and watching a movie. I went to Las Vegas twice. First time, in 1993, saw Chicago at Ceasars Palace, front row center, at it was great! Second time, in 2012, I called the front desk on the first day and asked if I could check out early. I was out by dawn and on the road out of town. I couldn’t wait to leave Las Vegas. Would never go back.
This was fun, and I have similar dislikes. Never tried whiskey; probably never will. Vegas was ok. I love pedicures simply because I don’t like bending over to do my toes. I haven’t read most of the “classics,” and there’s probably a good reason behind that.
If hen parties are bridal showers, I must say I love them, but I’ve always hated the name hen party.
Nylse sounds like you and I are mostly on the same sort of wavelength… the term hen party is really a UK (and maybe other places) phrase: to me it concurs up images of brides-to-be wearing veils covered in condoms and groups of roudy girls drinking too much. I know not all hen parties are like that, but I know for sure some of them are!!
I can’t stand the bending over part of doing my own pedicures (it gets harder the older I get) but there’s no way in the world I can put myself through that again, LOL xx
Loved this post and I agree with you on most of these points. I tried a pedicure once and disliked it so much, not that it tickled, I’m just not keen on anyone touching my feet, my quirk! I could write you a list a mile long of the times friends have, sometimes forcibly recommended something, saying “but you would love it, really!!” Then I/we try whatever it is and absolutely hate it. Whiskey and ginger is my favourite tipple (grandmas fault), only now I’m older I’ve got a bit of an intolerance to alcohol. Las Vegas, I have never been and I don’t think it would be for me, however, our passion is the underwater world. I used to dive but now snorkel, however, the ocean has to be warm, clear with preferably a coral reef, so there’s lots of life there. I’m always so careful recommending anything to anyone because as you say we are all so different.
Haha yes I know some other people who dislike their feet being touched, Alison – I don’t think you’re alone!
I would LOVE to go snorkelling – in theory – but only if the water were reasonably shallow and it wasn’t saltwater. Not sure any coral reefs like that exist, however…! 😉 x
Fun post..that’s cool you made it to Las Vegas..I live here! Moved from Seattle 18 mos ago..its so very strange living here…better place for vacation ha ha..I plan on going back to Seattle this summer.
Wow, Valerie – I honestly don’t know how you live in that heat during the summer (and I LOVE hot weather)! Bit of a contrast with Seattle, no?!! hehe x
It’s great you returned to blogging! I laughed tears, finally someone understands my struggle with Charles Dickens. He was just a bad writer of otherwise good plots. How lucky there are films. ;D
My once and never again experience is getting a Thai massage. I guess I am not having enough (back) pain for it but I went there feeling very fit and healthy and returned a cripple (for the next entire week!).
P.S. I will now go back to knitting a Harry Potter house scarf. ;D
Thanks Frieda – it was never an intentional leaving, just a long hiatus…! I think you’re spot-on about Dickens: a bad writer of great plots. I’ve seen there’s a new BBC adaptation of Great Expectations coming soon so I’ll be watching for sure!!
And OMG about the Thai massage: I’ve had some full-on sports massages in my time but never one that’s left me feeling worse! Thank you for the warning 😉 lol
Lovely post Catherine, just want to add some of my likes and dislikes too.
Whisky … sometimes mainly only on Burns night with haggis!
Swimming in the sea, as long as it’s not rough and I can see the bottom .. lol
Skiing a big fat yes! I love it and wish I could go all the time.
Knitting is a maybe in the future, but I don’t have the time right now.
Love a pedicure though, its a real treat for me!
Good luck with the things you do like, enjoy them all. Jacqui xx
Jacqui you mentioned something that most people have never – and would never – try: haggis! I LOVE haggis!! Keith got me to try it once and I was like, noooooo it’s gonna be disgusting… it’s so delicious. In fact we had it two nights ago with mash and swede, nomnomnomnomnom
I love that you love skiing; maybe if I’d been as a young adult (rather than a gangly, uncoordinated 13 year old) then I might think differently. But the warmth thing is still a factor for me, hehe x
As someone who hates both Vegas and Dickens, I feel so seen right now! We spent a week in Vegas over Christmas a couple of years ago (with a much younger couple, which may have been part of the problem) and I tried gamely to enjoy myself but was miserable. It just felt so…aggressively fake and consumerist. I know that’s the reason many people love it. The food and drinks were incredibly overpriced and mediocre at best — including meals at Spago and Hell’s Kitchen. We did have an absolutely lovely meal and experience at Sushi Roku on Christmas day, the only time I felt truly relaxed and taken care of the whole trip.
I have a degree in English literature, so always felt guilty about my loathing for Dickens.
I’m ambivalent about pedicures — I lack the patience and hand dexterity to paint my own nails. But they’re rarely as relaxing as I want them to be.
And +1 to the commenter who mentioned hot tubs. It’s human soup!
I have never had a pedicure but my husband decided to treat me and arranged a reflexology massage. This is torture for the feet of the first order,and when the torture was finally over the practitioner asked me if I would like to pray with her. NO WAY
First, my husband owns a Bonanza which he flies at least twice a week. He has a cadre of old men buds who also fly. They each fly their own plane and go to a place they decided on for lunch where they discuss flying. They call it “the hundred dollar hamburger.” I met my husband of 34 years about 36 years ago. He invited me and my then 7 year old daughter to go flying which scared me to death. But since the kid begged to go, I gave in and he flew us neatly around the pattern and landed. Since we got married when she was 9 and he helped raise her, flying with him turned into a family deal. Our 4 grandchildren have been flying with him. That 7 year old kid is the mother of those 4 children, and since she loved flying as a child, she has given her children the same opportunity.
OMG this is hilarious!!!! Here is my loooong take:
1. Drinking whisky
Tastes like wood, like the wooden popsicle sticks, I don’t love it but I don’t hate it. We got a Japanese whiskey that is mellow an delicious!
2. Having a pedicure
I’m also very ticklish BUT I can never cut my nails correctly. I love having a pedi without having to be bent over for awhile!
3. Watching Fifty Shades of Grey/Twilight
I’ve watched a little bit of the three Twilight fiascos and really hated them. Haven’t seen 50 but tell me if Jamie Dornan goes shirtless, I might endure the rest of the movie!
4. A trip to Las Vegas
I live 4 hrs away from Vegas and I LOOOOVE IT!!! Hahaha haven’t been since having children though
5. Swimming in the sea
I’ve also had a terrible experience in the ocean as a kid but I do like it! I do have a fear of stepping in something that can hurt/kill me but I love the ocean. There us a time when beaches in Mexico have warm water 😉
6. Going on a light aircraft flight
I did it as a child and loved it!!!! (It was my aunt’s boss’ plane)
7. Reading a Dickens novel
I think I’ve never read those unless in was a lighter Children’s version. I did tried Wuthering heights and couldn’t understand it so left it after a couple of pages.
8. Going skiing
Love it! Too expensive even though I have resorts 3 hours away. Haven’t been since having children
Did it as a child, liked it, never finished my piece hahahaha
An on your after thoughts:
Golf. Booooring! Not interested at all
Understanding the rules of cricket. Not for ne
Watching a Harry Potter movie. I did watch them all not doing that ever again, hated the end. Never read the books
Going to a hen party. I have no idea what this is lol
Visiting Dubai. Too much MUCH lol
A hot tub. Just with the fam or friends I’d do it.
I can’t think right now on a list of my own… but I’ll try later
Pedicure: got given one for a birthday. Lovely, earnest young girl buffed one of my toenails so much that it hurt, and nearly 3 years later…. that toenail still looks as though it has a deformity disease.
Small airplanes: friend dave was a pilot in the countryside. Took 3 of us up for a ride. Cut the engines mid-air, we fell straight down, then he flicked engines back on, aimed the nose directly up… and continued. Apparently it was hilarious….
Swimming: 2 near drowning incidents when very young. One was indeed lovely. The other was not. I loathe any swimming place
Alcohol: ewh. Why would anyone want the pain and misery of a hangover? Yeah, I’m a kill-joy…….
I live in Scotland and don’t like whisky. That may actually be illegal to say out loud, and now that I’ve done so I’ll probably be deported back to the USA after fifteen years up here, but that’s the truth of it. I can say that now that I actually know what goes into the process of making whisky, I appreciate it, I just DO NOT like it. I’m a beer and wine girl and that’s about it. Give me a hoppy IPA any day. And you are also 100% correct about Vegas. It’s a great place to spend a weekend, or pass through on your way somewhere else.
I so needed this kind of read today. Thank you. I will never do another cruise again. So many people love them and I understand the appeal but I was happy when I got off the ship. I agree with you about Las Vegas! I’ve been twice, 20 years apart and that was enough. The films you mentioned were a complete waste of time. Looking forward to future posts and I do enjoy following you on Instagram – love your walks!
Too funny! We all have things others rave about and we’re like, no thanks. For me it’s roller coasters and theme parks generally. Loved ‘‘em when I was twenty something but just can’t now. Glad to see you back.
Disney World. There are so many websites devoted to planning a Disney vacation, people talk about it like it’s heaven on earth, and when I lived in Miami most of my friends began buying season passes when their children were still infants. With all the hype, maybe my expectations were too high, but it’s just a nice bunch of theme parks. Been there, done it, no need to ever return.
I agree with you on all points. Only the pedicure I can stand (I only have them in spring and summer). Las Vegas I have never been and it doesn’t appeal to me either.
Great to see you back! My list would include: having my eyelashes tinted (couldn’t see a difference), going to a casino/playing a slot machine, getting a permanent, a bikini wax, using an Epilady (don’t know what they were called elsewhere, but pulled your leg hairs out by the roots), smoking a cigarette, using a neti pot (waterboarding yourself)
Lucky you, then you must have very dark eyelashes already. I just had mine tinted today and it was like discovering that I actually have eyelashes. 😀 With everything else I can totally agree!
You just made me laugh out loud about the Neti pot! My doctor made me use similar for an ENT problem I had and waterboarding is exactly how it feels! Or drowning!!!