Well, we made it. Happy new year! Welcome, 2017. I hope you don’t take to heart people’s frequent complaints about you being such a vastly uneventful number, even though ABBA wrote you a really cool song in the seventies.
We are as a culture obsessed with the sixteen-shaped milestone: two magical digits that drive rich white parents to splurge on huge parties where cars are bestowed and MTV cameras can often be found… and that year was still a bitch all the same, so maybe this won’t matter. We hope you like us, and may we all get along.
To celebrate your arrival, I’ve decided to partake in the ancient tradition (I’m just assuming, I don’t know how old it actually is; kind of like Bernie Sanders) of jotting down the ways in which I plan to make 2017 “my year” (like for real this time, you guys). Here are some of the measures I would like to implement in the coming months, plus some advice I should start heeding:
*This one’s a regular, but it bears repeating: take more selfies. Take ‘em! Once people have seen your face there’s no reason to pretend it’s something that it’s not, and that’s liberating. Now you know what zone you’re moving in: set a bar and just try to avoid sliding too far below it. Easy! No one would ask a squid to swell like a blowfish, so be fierce.
*Get in more fights online. I hear it keeps you young, and idiots need to be called out now more than ever.
*Quit watching TV shows you don’t actually enjoy all that much but keep numbly consuming just because they are well-regarded or talked-about, or because being part of their following makes you feel weirdly superior somehow. Buzz and prestige won’t matter when you’re dead. TV should be fun, not Westworld (I will be there for season two, but just because I like its themes).
*In the same vein, don’t try too hard to stick with media that fails to catch your attention and leaves your mind to wander into 2am ceiling-staring, where all the demons come out to play and you’re forced to confront your paralyzing fear of death and how unlikely it really is that there’s anything after it but a colorless void. If you’re bursting with anxiety because of your inability to picture what it is like to simply cease to exist while you’re watching Scream Queens, drop it.
*Get off Twitter if it’s making you unbearably sad. You want to stay informed and engaged in the fight for everything that’s right, and that’s very noble, but at some point it just stops being productive. When Russian propaganda and its impact on the last American election are monopolizing your mind and hindering your ability to get schoolwork done, ignore The New York Times. That’s apparently presidential now, so you should be fine.
*Watching twenty rom-coms in the same week because you came up with an idea for one doesn’t count as research. It’s important, of course, but at the end of the day only work is work. I don’t even understand how you try to justify this, since you spend half the time looking at your phone anyway.
*Leave nail-eating in 2016 unless there is a good enough reason to support it, like being stranded on a deserted island and needing sustenance.
*No more skipping the gym using petty excuses like feeling tired or too busy. You will stay tired lying in bed and, historically, you can’t get anything done while feeling fat with guilt. I don’t care if you’ve already paid your dues four times this week, you’ll be there on Friday at 5pm unless you’ve broken a leg (go anyway if it’s shoulder day).
*Deadlines are not guidelines, even if you’ve set them yourself. Death is serious, it kept Six Feet Under on the air for years; guidebooks all around the globe lie unread filling drawers you dare not open.
*Stay away from mushroom clouds.
*Write more often and show it to the world more often. Know that no one cares (really, even those guys you’ve known for years and hope might care a little- they don’t), so force them to. This text is cursed and it’ll cast a hex on you unless you make it all the way to the end.
*Be kinder; even when it is not easy or there is no payoff.
*Get a Hillary Clinton pop doll.
*Glee was a flawed but often wonderful series that ran its course and now is never coming back, so you should let go already.
*Well, that one was just unrealistic, but I was being far too reasonable. Happy new year!
Originally posted on Tumblr on 01/02/17