2016 Year in Review

1. What did you do in 2016 that you’d never done before?
I have a podcast! My friend wife Paula D Atkinson and started it together after we realized we got pretty fired up about what’s happening in the world. We started We Are Still Hungry and now we have dozens of have followers and I love it.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I honestly don’t remember. I was very specific about resolutions in 2015 but I don’t think I made any 2016 resolutions. I also had a conversation fight with a coworker about the difference between goals (“I’d like to read one book a month”) and a resolution (“I resolve to be more present”) so I think after that, I just said, “Fuck it — bring on 2016.”

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Yes! 2016 brought the world Harrison and Wilson. They laugh at my jokes and are chubby, which are two of my favorite qualities in men and babies.

4. Did anyone close to you die?

5. What countries did you visit?
None. I flew to Arkansas twice but I didn’t go anywhere and did not take a vacation. Spending time with my family is awesome and nourishing, but in 2017 I would like to spend some time outside my own life so I can experience new things and feel small in the world.

6. What would you like to have in 2017 that you lacked in 2016?
Romantic love and affection.

7. What dates from 2016 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
On November 8, I sat at a bar alone (after Paula left) and watched the presidential election results come in. Living in a world with a Trump presidency is not something I’ve been able to deal with yet. I stayed until about 1:30 and then went home and slept in half hour increments until I saw the words “President-elect Donald Trump” then I cried myself to sleep.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Talking about my depression on the podcast. It made me feel proud and vulnerable and scared, but since we clicked “publish” I realized how important it was for me to do so.

9. What was your biggest failure?
My biggest failure was not being kinder to my body.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Nothing major. A few colds and infections here and there. OH, and the day-to-day, monotonous, mind-numbing ache that comes with dysthymia and depression. Ha!

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Medication and therapy.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Hillary Clinton. When she addressed the nation after she conceded the election, I was breathless. One day I hope to be that poised and eloquent.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Donald Trump. What’s more appalling and depressing than the leader of our country saying “grab ‘em by the pussy”?

14. Where did most of your money go?
Rent, parking, therapy.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
HILLARY FUCKING CLINTON. I loved feeling the momentum of a bad-ass women’s movement.

16. What song will always remind you of 2016?
Beyonce’s Lemonade. All songs from that album. #notsorry

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Happier!
b) thinner or fatter? Probably the same, maybe fatter, but hate this question because it’s horrible and arbitrary.
c) richer or poorer? Same.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Painting! Or, writing or making art, in general. Somewhere along the way, it just wasn’t on the top of my list. And we all know how hard it is to get back to the top of the list.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Work. I love my job, but I rolled over a lot of vacation days and that’s straight up bullshit.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
You mean in 11.5 months? Probably with my parents as life dictates, but I would LOVE to go somewhere warm.

21. Did you fall in love in 2016?
Nope. Not even close.

22. How many one-night stands?
This is an inappropriate question. But no. No one-night stands.

23. What was your favorite TV program?
I continue to be hopelessly in love with Law & Order SVU, any and all shows on Bravo, and a few standouts I discovered on Netflix: Stranger Things, a show about women in prisons, American Crime.

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
I think I probably hated Donald Trump before, but man, did my hatred for him skyrocket in 2016.

25. What was the best book you read?
I can’t ever say which is the best. But here are a few passages from the books I read in 2016.

We Were Liars, by E. Lockhart:
We looked at the sky. So many stars, it seemed like a celebration, a grand, illicit party the galaxy was holding after the humans had been put to bed.

The Girl with All the Gifts, by M.R. Carey
Melanie thinks: when your dreams come true, your true has moved . You’ve already stopped being the person who had the dreams, so it feels more like a weird echo of something that already happened to you a long time ago.

The Good Father, by Noah Hawley
Looking at the photos of my family, fleeting emotions hit me—flashes of anger, of fear. These are the feelings that last—the extreme swings, the fights that burn themselves into your core. A decade later it is easier to remember the car crash than it is to remember the long drive leading up to it.

The Girls, by Emma Klein
Poor Sasha. Poor girls. The world fattens them on the promise of love. How badly they need it, and how little most of them will ever get. The treacled pop songs, the dresses described in the catalogs with words like “sunset” and “Paris.” Then the dreams are taken away with such violent force; the hand wrenching the buttons of the jeans, nobody looking at the man shouting at his girlfriend on the bus. Sorrow for Sasha locked up my throat.

26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
I stuck pretty close to the vest this year, musically. I loved listening to First Aid Kit and Marin Morris. They were new to me, but not really new.

27. What did you want and get?
Recognition and applause at work.

28. What did you want and not get?
Long term love & romance.

29. What was your favorite film of this year?
The 13th, by Ava Devunay.

30. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned FORTY ONE and I spent it having dinner with Paula, Carlo, Marisa, my favorite Australian Jarrod, and Mark.

31.What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Tbh, sex. I mean, I could lie and say something else, but that’s the truth.

32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2016?
I saw a thing on Facebook that said, “My personal style can best be described as ‘I didn’t expect to get out of the car’”. I think that pretty much sums it up, but if you need details: black cropped pants, black flats, a flowy top, silver hoops, silver bangles and more than enough mascara.

33. What kept you sane?
Medication and therapy.

34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
My sweet, sweet Hillary.

35. What political issue stirred you the most?
All of them. Seriously, ALL OF THEM. This was the year that I found myself coming into my own passion about American politics. As I sit and type on January 8, with the inauguration of Donald Trump a mere 12 days away, I am still completely dumbfounded.

36. Who did you miss?
The same ol’ ghosts of the past I always do.

37. Who was the best new person you met?
My new work husband has brought me an excessive amount of daily laughs.

38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2016.
Playing by the society’s rules for women on how to look, how to think, and how to behave gets us nowhere. Look at Hillary! She did everything exactly how American culture and media demanded. She smiled without looking too happy. She was intelligent without being threatening. She was quiet and let Trump walk all over her during the debates and did so peacefully and calmly. And in the end — IT DIDN’T MATTER. SHE STILL LOST. And she lost because there was “just something about her” that people didn’t like. (That “something” was her vagina.) It’s all complete bullshit in my humble opinion and I will not conform anymore. I won’t do it! I won’t listen to one more fucking person tell me that I’m “too” something for a woman. Enough.

Hillary taught me that if you follow the rules and you don’t get a fair shot anyway, fuck the rules.

39. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

I won’t go as a passenger, no
Waiting for the road to be laid
Though I may be going down
I’m taking flame over burning out

2 thoughts on “2016 Year in Review

  1. Pingback: 2017 Year in Review

  2. Pingback: Year in Review 2021: COVID Part Deux | Amy S Bridges

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