So I survived 2016…we all survived 2016 (unless you are some weird ghost/corpse/zombie who has somehow obtained my URL, or you are from an alternate universe where silly things like time has no meaning, in which case: Welcome!)
Welcome to 2017, people. All that has happened is the calendar has reset itself in a supposedly significant way, the 6 is now a 7 and the 12 is now a 1 and we can all continue living the debaucherous and immoral lives we’ve been cultivating this entire time. Go humanity!
I am pleased, however, that I have managed to survive yet another routine trip around the sun, especially since this year I started driving, which has significantly increased my sense of mortality.
My sense of morality however is still, I admit, a little shoddy.
I spent the last few seconds of 2016 outside in the cold, walking along the streets of the Spanish town Moraira, listening to the people inside scream “Happy New Year” at each other. It was nice to feel like I was watching everybody else get on with their new year whilst mine stood still for a bit. Then I had to watch a very loud and disorganised fireworks display because NYE is full of cliches.
My first few moments of 2017 were spent in a club I have actively avoided for about a year and a half, because the last excursion ended in me puking my guts out over the side of a Catamaran into the Mediterranean Sea (holiday life is soooo hard). This time I was smart enough not to puke, and therefore I spent the night dancing awkwardly with people who were a lot more inebriated than I was. Happy New Year.
I got a taxi home before everyone else did (because I’m old and need time for my wrinkles to reset before the sun comes up), snuck back into my dad’s house and sat on his kitchen counter eating ham by myself. We’re off to a good start if my first meal of the year was ham.
At this point I had enough clarity of mind to consider my resolutions, or “very relaxed guidelines for the year ahead” as I like to call them, because then I feel less ashamed if I don’t achieve them.
My guidelines for last year were as follows:
1. Stop getting drunk on my own emotions and sending psycho messages to unsuspecting victims.
I like to think I achieved this. I no longer send messages, I just write blogposts of subversive intent, and maybe I subtweet a little. In terms of embarrassing texts, 2016 blessed me with a few incoherent voice notes to my friends and one failed attempt at a sort of booty call in July, although I don’t think he got what I was talking about because I just kept sending weird winky faces. (Note to self: try the eggplant emoji next time).
This success may be due to the fact that I now have a Whatsapp group with 2 other emotional individuals, so all my angst has been channelled into them (sorry gals).
2. Actually read all my English setworks.
I am proud to say that I read 70% of the subscribed reading material this year. I no longer skim through study guides, I actually lugged around the tombs prescribed by the English department and became that nerd who did her homework at music festivals.
3. Write more.
I need to stop thinking I have the diligence or the time to churn out a blog post every week. It’s just not going to happen.
4. Actually save my money because I need a car.
I’m really freaking proud of myself for doing this. To be fair, the fact that I turned 21 and I have a really nice and generous grandmother paid off. But at least 26% of my car came from me carrying hot plates of food to fancy rich people and heavy beer steins to sloppy drunk people. A lot of carrying for a lot of people went into paying for 26% of my car, and his name is Slartibartfast because that’s what he sounds like when he starts up, plus Douggy A is my ultimate home boy.
5. Get my license so I can drive the car I’m sacrificing so much disposable income for.
3 failed tests, 2 driving instructors, 50 hours of lessons, thousands of rands, so many panic attacks and almost a year later, I finally have that stupid piece of paper that confirms that I can, in fact, drive by myself.
Now I really hate driving.
6. Focus on nothing but myself because I get a little distracted and forget to look out for number 1.
I’ve done a lot of weird shit this year. I jumped about 50 metres into an old mine that was filled with water, played pool volleyball with my friends in my underpants, declared war on the neighbourhood watch because they’re self-righteous dicks who do nothing, told someone I really cared about to buzz off, hosted some really good parties, passed out in a flower bed, climbed a few campus buildings, high fived a pope, and kissed a lot of people on the forehead.
And I did all of it, pretty much, for myself.
Which brings us to this year. The big one-seven. Here are my very relaxed guidelines for 2017:
1. Stay away from Dangerous White Men (DWMs)
My best friend Su has figured out that pretty much all the angst in my life stems from my weird interest in Dangerous White Men. The ones who are clearly up to no good and will probably tear down your land in search of gold (it’s just a reference to Pocahontas, but take it as a euphemism if you will).
2. Get better at driving.
3. Learn to walk in heels before my graduation.
Despite my freakish height, I really want to be one of those girls with nice calves in nice heels in her nice graduation get up. I want to look fancy and tower over everyone when I take my cliched cap and gown photographs in front of a fountain.
4. Figure out what I want to do with the rest of my life.
Like I said “relaxed guidelines”.
5. Probably go to the gym more.
At least I can now drive myself 600 metres to gym instead of walking all that way.
I should probably also do more things like stop procrastinating, eat less junk food and drink less gin and tonic. But I’ll take the year as it comes.
I hope everyone reading this has a good year. I hope you fill it with mistakes and hugs and the people you love. I hope you dance a little in parking lots and that you learn to love yourselves a little more every time you do something shameful. May you call people out if they’re being ableist, sexist, racist, ageist, bigoted or insensitive.
Just be decent, flawed, majestic human beings.
I love you all,