Peter Crosby, 2021

Let’s be honest, 2021 was a dog’s breakfast. With society all but breaking down, the year was an emotional rollercoaster ride, careening headlong into a void of nothingness and Norpramin.® But how does 2021 rank against all the harrowing years that preceded it?

An historical perspective on the year 2021.

Undoubtedly, the January 6th insurrection reminded many of 1807, when Aaron Burr plotted to establish his own country right where Mexico was living. The voting rights debate harkened back to 1870, when the 15th Amendment was passed, prohibiting states from blocking voters based on the popular “not being white guys” legal argument. And the ongoing pandemic recalled 1811, when James A. Garfield—widely believed to be the country’s first werewolf president—contracted “the mange.” [citation needed]

The political climate was changing in 2021.

After the fires, heat waves, cold snaps, flooding, earthquakes, hurricanes, tornados, and locust plagues that devastated lives this past year, there was one silver lining. Almost everyone who wasn’t being paid to deny climate change realized the crisis wasn’t just pseudoscience like heliocentrism. ExxonMobil was even forced to create a website accepting sidestepping their responsibility for Earth’s extinction-level gas problem.

Social media was a life-line for isolated introverts.

While COVID-19 kept us physically isolated, social media kept us digitally connected. In hindsight, that connection proved devastating to families and friendships the world over. Who could’ve predicted that an inhuman and uncaring algorithm, written to maximize profits at all cost, could have unintended and disastrous consequences? Besides everyone, I mean. As a result, people began abandoning social media in favor of subscribing to long-winded, monthly email newsletters—that’s happening, probably.

2021 marked the end of the arts.

The COVID pandemic hit the global artistic community especially hard in 2021. Shuttered concert halls, theaters, and playhouses meant that the world’s celebrities had fewer venues to get the love and attention their parents deprived them of growing up. Luckily, the Chinese spyware app, TikTok®, provided a much-needed outlet for people to express pent-up “creativity,” like the Milk-Crate Challenge which crippled more Americans in 2021 than polio.

A death toll like we hadn’t seen since last year.

Tragically, more Americans have now died from COVID than from any one of our previous military conflicts, including the unwinnable War On Christmas, now in its 2,021st year. When will this country finally admit defeat and withdraw our troops from Santa’s North Pole Village? Did we learn nothing from last year’s bloody “Yuletide Offensive?” Wake up, people, the elves can just keep making more guns!

Technology reached new heights in 2021.

Rockets really “took off” in 2021, as the Billionaire Bro Club built phallic-shaped launch vehicles for no particular reason. But the world’s high-tech overlords stretched our credulity too far last year when they tried to palm off NTFs, the Metaverse, and hard seltzers.

2022 couldn’t be any worse, right? Right…?!?

In the final analysis, there’s one major takeaway from 2021: If humanity can survive the dark days of 2021 without legal weed in all 50 states and Netflix® nationalized as a public utility, it can survive damn near anything.

So hang in there. And have a happy new year, okay?