Top Ten reasons 2021 will be better

Illustration: Siloam Yeung / The Peak

By: Emma Jean, Staff Writer

  1. We have collectively learned the value of comfortable clothes

The importance of having comfy clothes can’t be overstated. Without crowded buses or stiff lecture hall seats to keep distracted from the potentially permanent jean imprints on our bellies, there’s no avoiding the suffocating nature of high-waisted jeans while hunched over. With an investment in warm sweaters, big-ass pants and winter socks, we can take 2020’s lockdown slob-chic look into the new year. After all, if we carry the spirit of a Kirkland 12-pack of Christmas socks in our hearts, it will be with us all year round. 

2. Podcast anecdotes are conversation fuel

With the cold weather keeping us tucked inside and desperately searching for human connection, there’s no better time to form a warm, comforting relationship with someone you genuinely care about . . .  a podcast host who doesn’t know you exist. After nine months of interesting and/or funny people whispering their life stories into your ears, we’ve got enough second-hand anecdotes and stories to carry through whatever amount of small talk 2021 throws our way. Just pretend that funny story happened to a real-life friend of yours, not some jerk with recording equipment. Because after all, podcasters are like our close friends. Right? Right?!

3. The handshake is DEAD!

My quarrel with handshakes is similar to my quarrel with the concept of Jesus Christ; I really like and admire the original meaning and intentions, but have its practitioners ever fucked it up. Handshakes are supposed to be a symbol of trust and mutual respect, but they’ve devolved into overanalyzed, pretentious, LinkedIn-spawn horseshit. How does the firmness of my grasp indicate how well I can do my job? How can I subtly wipe the sweat off my hands without a potential employer noticing? Did the ketchup-covered handshake I shared with my manager impact my (shockingly short) employment there? To hell with it all! 

4. Livestream shows as a medium have been perfected 

If you share my conflict of being an antisocial individual and wanting to see the world or whatever, you’ll appreciate the miraculous appearance of good livestreams. They were like a warm hug — one that appeared after I hadn’t felt human touch in eight months. Wow. 

Want to watch world-class events from bed? DONE. After nine months of troubleshooting bad mics and shoddy WiFi, online live shows are as seamless as Bruno Mars shifting from hopeless romantic to just hopeless. The world may be in a largely questionable state, but at least we’ve got great entertainment. 

5. We are STEPPING UP our interior design games

Have you been staring at the colour of your living space for so long you want to take your fingernails and scratch the paint right off the walls yourself? I know I have! After nearly a year of staying in my room each day, it seems like a natural reaction to switch everything up beyond getting those rave-lite TikTok lights. Like a mildly agoraphobic Beth Harmon, I drink chamomile tea every night and picture teal walls and a mid-century coffee table taking over my childhood bedroom. They’ll almost distract from the holes in the walls from my MCR posters of old.

6. A new Lorde album is on its way? Maybe??

I’ve never gotten into Lorde myself, but as an older, internet-perusing member of Gen Z, I know that a lot of people rely on this woman for relentlessly catchy cry-music to the greatest degree. If the lyric “I’ve never felt more alone / It feels so scary getting old” set to a pulsing beat doesn’t make you break out in adolescent stress-itches, I don’t know what will. It’s been four years since she released her latest album Melodrama (as the many Twitter accounts desperately tracking it will tell you), and it’s widely believed that this year will be The Return of the Queen. Start practicing your deep, strange vocal runs now; let’s hope some sad bangers are coming our way. 

7. Time to act on the shit we processed in 2020

The period is early March 2020 (no, I still haven’t gotten over it almost being March AGAIN). You can feel a bunch of worries and pressures and anxieties bubbling up inside you like a kettle of repression, but think if you keep moving, studying, talking, distracting, you won’t have to feel even worse by facing it head on. A week later, you are told it is unsafe to leave your house. The government tells you to stay home indefinitely, and suddenly, you can’t keep moving anymore. Whoops, was there supposed to be a joke in there? Anyways, 2020 was a year of being forced to confront and deal with your shit, and hopefully we’re all better off for it. Hopefully . . .

8. Award shows are going to be WEIRD AS HELL

Hey, remember when Parasite won at the Oscars last year? That was fantastic. Anyways, Aaron Tveit is the only nominee for the lead actor category this year at the Tony Awards, and I think that sets the tone for the rest of the virtual televised award ceremonies to come. How will Jason Derulo continue his tradition of falling down a flight of stairs? Either way, we were robbed of seeing Phoebe Bridgers show up to a fancy award show in a skeleton onesie. Hasn’t 2020 taken enough?

9. Dogs are THRIVING with everyone home more often

I don’t know if you’ve seen my dog Charlie lately, but he has been killing it. That new orange-purple collar makes the warmth in his eyes pop, and that happy little trot he’s been doing? What the hell is he trying to pull? Everyone wants to be like that pink bunny he carries around everywhere and be his best bud, and for good reason. No one is doing it like him. This year, with some wishful thinking, you too can be like Charlie.

10. Oh right, the vaccine. 

Some very dedicated people made a COVID-19 vaccine and it’s going to be widely distributed this year. I guess we should talk about it; it’s pretty exciting! Can you imagine being in a crowded room again? Perhaps you can attend a cult meeting on the AQ fourth floor, a house party ending in you losing a shoe and your friend, a quiet night in spent ruining your relationships with Monopoly? We will once again require excuses to avoid said gatherings. Ah, simpler times.

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