I jump on bandwagons. I do it a lot. I don’t care about new the newest version of the iPhone, or any electronic devices for that matter. However, when it comes to clothes, if I am financially capable of keeping up with the times, I am guilty of doing just that. Even when I know better; that no matter how much money I attain or how big my closet gets, it will never be enough and will gratify me for only so long. Money will forever be a looming concern because I wasn’t raised on the belief that is an abundant resource. Therefore I shouldn’t be reckless with it. A cue I am hoping my brother, a remorseless spender who I adore, will pick up sometime relatively soon. Plus, clothing companies are designed to continuously change to keep us void-fillers buying all of their shit on a rolling basis. The sick twist is that I love throwing things out. I buy all of these things, then I get off on throwing them out.
Then there are the social media/viral fads. Like a few years ago, when it was super trendy to let everyone know all the f**** your’re not going to give in the New Year, while everyone else conventionally vows to give all the f**** they think they should give. I can appreciate it, because it’s funny and laughing is my favorite thing to aside from eat. This humor comes about because there’s someone out there with enough witty humor to drudge through all that internet content and land on our screens. I commend them for that.
Then, other viral fads and the humor they produce stem from making the best out of a not so great situation. Kind of like many people refer to 2016 as a “not so great situation.” For example, the flood of Joe Biden memes following Trump winning the presidential election. That was a real suck fest of an election but I’d be lying if those memes didn’t help me accept it. Pure gold.
A lot of other really awful things happened in 2016. The Orlando shooting at Pulse nightclub, the explosions in Turkey, the Bastille Day Terrorist Attack in Nice, and the attacks in Brussels. Britain exited the EU. The ongoing state of Syria. Increased attacks on police. Two of my most favorite musicians, David Bowie & Prince, died. The presidential election in its entirety; the whole thing. Grabbing women by the pussy, but also that email scandal (both of them.) They took George Michael from us on Christmas Day. Carrie Fisher & her mother Debbie Reynolds just a day apart from each other.
On a more personal level, my brother was in a car accident. A family member is very ill. My best friend got her heart broken. I left a job that I loved, along with the three men that not only gave me that job, but I had the pleasure of working with everyday. I moved out of the house I grew up in, which may be a rite of passage, but I had to leave behind my dog which churns my insides enough to make me tear if I think about it for too long. Along with my friends, family and all that is familiar.
Anyway, enough has happened this year to generate this trend of hatred. I’m not going to join because it’d make me full of shit. I didn’t hate 2016. I think people greatly undermine the severity of their words more often times than not. To hate an entire 12 months of a year from start to finish, would require an extreme amount of passion and dedication to hate anything and everything every. single. day. If that’s how you spend your year, I politely advise you to re-prioritize
I don’t think you hated 2016. You definitely hated some of the things that happened in 2016, I’ll meet you there. This post is to not to discredit anyone who personally suffered anything in 2016 or point a finger at anyone else’s right to hate 2016. Just don’t come at me with your “F*** 2016” nonsense. All those terrorist attacks, police violence, discrimination and all else that happened throughout the world stemmed? A firm foundation of hatred. Don’t be associated with hate because it’s a bad look.
Plus, there’s plenty of events worth recognizing and appreciating that happened in 2016 that no one will talk about because they’re caught up in all the hate. Unemployment rates are at pre-recession low. America became measles-free. Global malaria deaths have declined by 60%. Teen birth rate reaches an all-time low, and the number of women dying from pregnancy/childbirth has almost halved since 1990. Harriet Tubman will appear on the $20. World hunger reached its lowest point in 25 years. Norway committed 0% deforestation. Multiple species are off the endangered species list. And, the number of cigarette smokers in the U.S. has dropped 8.6 million since 2005. I’m one of those 8.6 million. An old friend told me that you can’t tell people you’re “not a smoker” until your one year, before that you’re just a “non-smoker.” I celebrated my one year non-smoking anniversary on Sept. 9. After 11 years, I am not a smoker.
In January, my (then) boyfriend graduated from USCG Training Center Cape May, New Jersey and began his career after suffering a year long existential crisis. My then boyfriend proposed to me and became my now husband. I moved to Boston in not only my first apartment, but our first apartment together. I gained a new family, officially. Not a life I ever imagined, but that’ll happen when you think you know everything. Friends and family are hitting similar milestones. Another little cousin was born, and one more is on the way. I watched my brother graduate as a Marine on Parris Island, as did the rest of my family, and begin his career. I celebrated Thanksgiving with almost my entire family for the first time in decades, which may very well not happen again for decades but I’ll always remember Thanksgiving 2016, because it was great.
Hate that you didn’t spend enough time with your family. Hate that you didn’t put the god damn phone down and have more real conversations. Hate that you spent just a little too much money this year. Hate that you care too much about money. Hate the fact that you spent all this time bashing this past year of your life when you should really be appreciating it because you’re still here. You get another year.