Somewhere in the deep recesses of my mind I recall someone prompting me to make an invitation list of the 10 people I would most like to have to dinner. Interesting concept.
Actually, the subject of making that list is a good dinner party conversation in itself!
Over the years I have brought it up with all sorts of people – young and old – and it has prompted amazing discussions till all hours of the night. More often than not I have written down my list of 10 favourites – then put it somewhere “safe”. You all know that safe place where we can never find anything again!
These yearly or two-yearly updates have had some common themes – in my case the Queen is a permanent fixture (at the head of the table, of course). However, some I would like to be common to all lists have sadly passed away. Nelson Mandela, Princess Diana and my father, to name a few.
Some have come and gone in my thoughts, for reasons best known to themselves – Lance Armstrong is a prime example! No way would he now grace my dinner table, having single-handedly made past cycling drug-cheats look like they only took a few headache tablets. How quickly someone you once held in the highest regard for not only his amazing talent, but his mentoring of young cyclists, can plummet us, his loyal fans, to the depths of despair (how could he have done this to us?)
Recently No.1 Son and I rewrote our lists – I think mine are mostly quite different to the list written last year, which reflects the change in direction and attitude my life has taken over that time. The list below is as it stood last week (but I could possibly change one of them already – this dinner party really is a movable feast!)
Richard Branson – needs no introduction
Mary Robinson – 7th President of Ireland & UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
HM Queen Elizabeth II – Ma’am
Bruce Macaveny – Australian sports commentator
Malala Yousafzai – shot by Taliban in Pakistan & Nobel Peace Prize recipient
Ricky Ponting – former Australian Cricket Captain
Jens Voigt – recently retired (and squeaky clean) German cyclist
Mary King – top British Equestrienne (3-Day Event)
Seth MacFarlane – American actor, singer & funny-man
Novak Djokovic – World No.1 Serbian tennis player
Revision of my list – already?
OUT – Ricky Ponting (no offence Ricky – I’m Tasmanian too)
IN – Janice Macleod – Artist & Author of “Paris Letters”
Now for No.1 Son’s list:
Tim Ferriss – Entrepreneur & Author of “The 4-hour Work Week”
Tim Cook – Current CEO of Apple Inc.
Cadel Evans – 1st Australian cyclist to win Tour de France (2013) (also squeaky clean)
Arianna Huffington – Entrepreneur & founder of The Huffington Post
Nathan Chan – CEO and founder of Foundr Magazine (yes, correct spelling)
Eric Thomas – Motivational speaker, originally from wrong side of the tracks in Detroit
Richard Branson – obviously appeals to all ages!
Hamish Blake – Australian radio host and comedian
Dwayne (The Rock) Johnson – American actor (former wrestler)
Michelle Obama – US First Lady
Our lists have come from our gut feelings, and our hearts. They are people we hold in the highest regard, people who have inspired us, made a difference, made us laugh, broken through barriers, turned their lives around and overcome the toughest obstacles.
Try this out round your family dinner table tonight – remember no choice is wrong!
I’d LOVE to hear your list- please write your list in the comments below – or on Facebook here.