In preparing for January exams, and slogging through the seemingly unending list of reading for next term, the end of the year has come surprisingly quickly. It seems as though the more years go by, the quicker the end of the next one comes about, and this year is no exception. I find it difficult to remember all the important moments that have shaped 2017, as the negative events stay in the mind’s eye much more clearly than the good things.
My favourite news piece from the year was the response to the inauguration of Donald Trump. On January 21st the first Women’s March became the largest single-day protest in American history, with around 653 reported marches taken place in the US alone. And to end the year in similar fashion, TIME magazine named ‘The Silence Breakers’ their Person of Year 2017 for speaking out against sexual assault and harassment, prompting many more to do the same using the #metoo.
Collectively, New Year’s resolutions make something of a manifesto to be periodically remembered, before ashamedly becoming associated with mental bargaining to the tune of, “that was only an idea”, “who has the time/money/patience to actually do that?”, and “they’re more like guidelines, than actual rules anyway…”.
I will only shop for clothing when necessary, and only make purchases from local, sustainable or fair trade retailers. Goodbye Zara, you cruellest of mistresses you.
I will stop buying plastic bottles, straws, cutlery, and cut down on packaging from food shopping. I recently bought a Chilly’s bottle, and would recommend getting one if you’re in the market for a bottle. They’re hardwearing and don’t give you that nasty plastic taste you can sometimes get from a reusable plastic bottle.
I will invest in a Mooncup, despite being completely terrified of the potentially very messy, pseudo-murder scene I envisage will inevitably happen.
I will continue to force my housemates into Craft Saturdays, in face of their protestations and the alluring call from a day of binging RuPaul’s Drag Race. So far, I have made several pom-poms. By close of year, I hope to have progressed to full cubist renderings of still life in three different mediums.
I will not place all my self-worth on the outcome of essay and exam results. I would recommend that you add this to your resolution list, or make it your only resolution. Having become so consumed by one “poor” grade last term, I hugely exacerbated an existing anxiety issue which then manifested itself physically. It seems completely absurd that I’ve stressed myself out to the point that I can no longer enjoy my favourite thing in life: gluten. What do the gluten frees out there stress eat? A couple heavy slices of sourdough coated in butter is no longer an option, help a hungry girl out.
Aside from one particularly unfortunate gluten-triggered situation (on which I will not elucidate further), 2017 has been an all-round good year on a very micro, personal level. In order to be a full-functioning and alright human being, it is okay to forget about the Kevin Spaceys of the world and enjoy the trivial matters that take your fancy. On that note, and if you’re looking for a little bit of inspo, here is a list of my favourites from 2017. And also, a link to an article Victoria Coren Mitchell wrote for The Guardian with some top tips for when the news gets to be a bit too overwhelmingly awful.
Album: Forced Witness, Alex Cameron (best song goes to “Runnin’ Outta Luck”, and the video is great https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmlEM–lmdo)
Film: Call Me by Your Name, Luca Guadagnino
Book: La Belle Sauvage, Phillip Pullman – admittedly I haven’t actually read this yet but it shot to the top of my very long “to read” list upon its release in October.
TV: Twin Peaks: The Return, David Lynch
Theatre: Angels in America, Marianne Elliot
Art Exhibition: Nan Goldin, Weekend Plans at IMMA, Dublin
Podcast: My Favourite Murder, Karen Kilgariff & Georgia Hardstark
And finally, some predictions for the year ahead. These should probably be taken with a pinch of salt, apart from number 1, and 6, and 7, and 10…
- Trump is impeached
- Prince Phillip pops his clogs…
- … swiftly followed by The Queen
- House prices rise 2%
- Angela Merkel is unable to form a government
- Catalonia forms an independent state
- BoJo resigns, forcibly perhaps
- Selena & Biebz get married
- Meghan Markle has a baby (scandalous)
- XFactor will finally be gone from our screens
- Nick Grimshaw gets the sack from the failing BBC1 Breakfast Show
- Currency becomes fully cyber
- Fiona Bruce gets to Blackpool on Strictly
Happy New Year!
– Emily Earp
Featured image source.