Feck 2019, as in – to refuse it. To deny the power it holds over us already.
New Year is a weird time for all of us mired in the Gregorian Calendar. It’s the ultimate Alpha-point; it is everything new and promised and time-starting-again. In its most hopeful aspect the New Year promises everything; a magical window of opportunity through which all things will become possible. This is the year that you finally get solvent, or take up yoga, or become the best version of yourself…
///feck you, 2019 – where were you for me last year, the year before that-?///
But that’s the thing with Alpha-points, they always intimate an ascent to their Omega as well: a description of the end state of the perfect you, in your perfect year. God forbid if you should ever fail in that climb, or life throw you curveballs, or that you suffer ‘the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune’ whilst trying to get up there…
///a little over 10 years ago, I was in a hospital ward for trying to overdose on cheap prescription pills and antidepressants.///
In Buddhist circles, that perfected end-point is always regarded with a healthy dose of suspicion. Perfect ideals become judges of the contemporary, and nothing ever matches up to their lofty standards. End-points in that sense are also tombstones, right? Once you have achieved the perfect you – what is there to do next?
///but i made it out. I climbed that ladder to get to my future.///
It doesn’t help that 2019 in particular, comes at us with all the charm of a trainwreck. Walls are going up everywhere, society has never felt so divided, and the mutual exchange of ideas has never felt so unlikely. The chance of anyone under the age of 65 actually owning their own home is, according to government statistics around 30%, dropping from 55% when it was first measured in 1996(*) Meanwhile, the planet still suffers from a million challenges that we really oughtta have sorted out by now; water-borne diseases, malnutrition, basic land-rights, corporate corruption, systemic poverty… And from the trajectory we’re heading, i’d say we’d be lucky if one side of the planet hasn’t nuked the other by the time I’m fifty…
///I never expected to make it here.///
I don’t know what counts as good Uncle’ing skills to my young nieces and nephews who are going to see a world of rampant epidemics, inequalities the world over, mass migrations, mass exclusionary policies…
Yay. Fun times.
So I don’t think we should be content with picturing the perfect Insta-forms of ourselves, and calling that our goal. ‘Contentment’ itself is a curious goal to strive for – a packaged state that is sold to us as everything we should be happy about in a world that is slowly drowning.
///I fought to get here, I fought to be standing here.///
So, feck 2019. Feck the contentment. Feck the promises of a perfect life. I don’t want the New Year to whisper sweet nothings to me and not deliver. We all know that there are going to be difficult days ahead just as there will be inspiring ones. We know that hard work entails sweat; and quite often dirt, blood, and tears as well.
Dont promise us that 2019 is going to give us everything.
2019 has no idea what we’re capable of.
(*) Interesting, but quite possibly boring reference that you nor I will ever read: House of Commons Statistics, ONS Office Statistics