HOLY CRAP WE DID IT!
Well, almost. There’s what, two weeks ‘til 2020 is officially fully consumed and shat from of our collective miseries? Honestly, I’m nervous claiming we’ve made it through before the actual stroke of midnight on 1/1/21. The way this year has gone I’m sure there’s least one ‘hold my beer’ moment looming and we’re all about to get shredded by the baby-eating murder hornet lizard swarm percolating inside all those damn monoliths.
How about those monoliths, though? Crazy how they just keep popping up and then getting torn down all over the world. My personal fav so far is the dumbasses who stole one in California. They replaced it with a wooden cross while going full Infowars lunatic fringe in an online video, yammering about illegal aliens and Jesus, before driving home blaring country music while making racist and homophobic comments. Jokes on them, though – Just a few days later a new monolith had been erected at the same site.
The big question now is ‘what have we learned surviving 2020?’ How do we take that information and harness it to be better people in the new year? How do we face everything this year has wrought and emerge stronger, or at least without a glaring case of PTSD? Read on for some helpful hints that are more lifestyle choice than ill-fated resolution.
Wear a Fucking Mask.
Look, I know you hear this all the time, but seriously, just do it. Nobody wants to see your underbite and soul patch anyway. If you can’t get your head out of your ass enough to do the whole damn world an easy solid by helping stem COVID’s death march, then we just don’t have anything else to discuss. Go back to ranting on your nationalist incel subreddit and yell at your mom for vacuuming upstairs while you’re trying to get your hate game on.
— MichaelRapaport (@MichaelRapaport) May 3, 2020
Stay (or get) Involved.
One thing we’ve (hopefully) gleaned here in the States during 2020 is that community involvement is key. Get engaged! Vote in local elections. Volunteer. Shop local. Help thy neighbor, even when he’s a douchebag with an obnoxious yellow monster truck and penchant for blaring country rap while leaf blowing his yard at 7 AM on the weekend. Get off the Internet and breathe some fresh air. Pick up some litter while you’re at it. We’re literally all in this together. If nothing else, science has proven people with strong community ties live the longest, and there’s no better revenge than outliving your enemies.
Are you really still pretending to be a rebel while suckling at the teat of a megacorporate monster who’s intentionally killing you? C’mon. You KNOW they’re killing you. It’s no secret. Not only are you mummifying your innards with toxic goo, but you’re also gleefully paying loathsome global corporations for the privilege. I know James Dean did it or whatever, but times have changed and we all know just how pathetic a habit cigarettes are. Also, you smell like shit and are slowly going yellow. Stop fetishizing formulaic generational false icons spoonfed to you by Madison Ave think tanks, and don’t die young and out of breath while you’re at it. Also, don’t just switch to vaping. Nobody, and I mean nobody, looks cool huffing cookie dough flavored haze out of a cyberpunk harmonica.
Times are tough, I hear you. Global pandemics, etc. But if you’ve got the means—even just a little means—the artists who make our world worth living in need your help. Buy a print from a photographer you love on Instagram or a t-shirt from your favorite indie band. Get a new coffee cup from that ceramics studio down the road with the long, double-sided yellow curb out front. Artists—and artisans—are the paper mache that sculpts our culture into something other than an id-driven dystopia. Not only do they make humankind’s industrialized creep toward extinction palatable, they also inspire us to think more, appreciate life, and try new things. The global creative economy is fragile at best right now, especially hyper-locally, so do your part if you can to keep the dream alive. We’re gonna need all the dreamers we can get to turn this nightmare around.
View this post on Instagram
Try it. Just for a few minutes every day for a week. I’m not saying meditation will change your life, but it’s been proven to lower stress, promote creative and critical thinking, provide emotional balance, and may even decrease the risk of maladies like heart disease and dementia. Nobody is saying you need to start wearing essential oils and hoarding crystals or sign on to some guru’s sex cult. You don’t even have to know who Matt Field or Dave Rastovich are. Just spend some time every day sitting and breathing and trying to be still. Turn off your inner monologue. Try to be in the moment, if only for a few moments. And if you manage to levitate, well, so much the better.
Make Some Space.
2020 has proven we need to be more inclusive. Whether that means making people of other colors and genders feel welcome and comfortable or just shutting the hell up so other folks can get a word in, making even the slightest effort can have a huge impact. Not to get on some ‘back in my day’ shit, but it used to be that just seeing another skater was cause for celebration, an instant bond formed via our shared passion. We need to bring that back. Lift up your community. It’s not just the right thing to do, it’s imperative if we want to build strong, healthy subcultures. If you see someone being shitty, call ‘em out. Don’t rain hate on ‘em, just try to explain why it isn’t okay to make jokes or comments or use certain slang. Yeah, people don’t like to be confronted, but they also don’t (usually) want to cause pain for other people. And if they do, well, fuck ‘em. Don’t tolerate their negativity, and get ‘em out of your life, while standing up for whomever they’re trying to knockdown. Which brings us to…
Don’t Be a Dick.
Seriously. If we’ve learned anything from 2020 it’s that there are wayyyy too many assholes in the world. Don’t be one of ‘em.