by Beau Hebert
Dear The Beauster,
2016 seemed to have it out for me. With Trump getting elected, a bunch of personal issues and all the celebrity deaths, I’m glad to see it in the rearview mirror. Do you have any advice for how I can get on 2017’s good side and have a better year?
2016 Hated me
Dear 2016 H’d M,
I’m sorry that you endured some unpleasantness in the calendar year 2016. However, in order to improve things in your life I think it is important that you stop personifying a measure of time as though it was a spiteful aunt who just cut you out of her will. 2016 is not a sentient being. It has no emotions for you one way or the other and is not even aware that you exist.
If, somehow, 2016 did possess awareness I suspect it would be far more concerned with going down in history as a “memorable year,” or dealing with the complexity of having a Leap Day thrown in. In the entire time-space continuum, your existence is but an infinitesimal flicker, the result of whatever impossibly tiny level of gravity and electromagnetism your body exerts into the massiveness of the universe. It is narcissistic to think that it would take any special note of you at all, especially with Kanye West already poised to siphon off so much of the universe’s attention.
2016 also had nothing to do with celebrity deaths. 2016 was not a cloaked reaper sharpening its scythe while skimming the pages of People magazine and Vanity Fair in its search for media stars to extinguish. Celebrities die. So do non-celebrities. So do animals and plants and forests and planets and actual stars in events called supernovas. Celebrities will keep on dying in 2017, I guarantee it. And, like 2016, 2017 is merely an abstract measure of time, devoid of awareness. No amount of curtsying like the heroine of a Jane Austin novel will win you favor with it – a measure of time is neither a cultured gentleman, nor a dishonorable cad…nor a physical object of any kind.
Focus on the things that you have influence over. If, as you mentioned, you had a “bunch of personal issues” in 2016 then get to work on those. Turning the page of a calendar will not act as a magical elixir for your problems. If, like so many of us, you are disturbed by the election of Donald Trump, then become politically active and fight for the things you believe in. Doing that will likely help you to work through some of the issues you’re having. Blaming 2016 for your problems is lazy and sort of ridiculous. Help people, visit old folks, care for animals – make the world a better place. 2017 is here and it’s got some pretty high expectations of you. Don’t let it down or else it will be very, very sad.
Prescription from the back bar pharmacy at Jude’s Old Town: The “Slow screw, mildly comfortable, slightly wild.” 2 oz. Lemonade, 2 oz. Orange Juice,1 oz. Vodka,1 oz. Sloe Gin ,0.75 oz. Bourbon, 0.75 oz. Southern Comfort. Shaken with rocks then strained into a high ball glass.
Overheard at the bar: “Come on refs, that is bullsh*t! Total BULLSH!*! I cannot f*cking believe this bullsh*t!”