Bets for the end of 2016

2016 – it’s been a terrible year. I don’t know about you, but I started a good year with friends, wine, and fondue. In January, Star Wars broke box office records, passing even Avatar – which is perfectly understandable, since Avatar is a terrible movie. Okay, conversation for another time. By the end of January, things already start to look bad. Being from Brazil, one of the countries where things were actually pretty bad, I felt this one quite personally. Remember the Zika Virus? I’ve wrote about it before: governments from Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador and Jamaica recommended women to delay pregnancy. That’s pretty bad. Zika virus is still a treat, I believe, and what triggered this massive crisis was the fact that it had to become an actual disaster before governments started caring about it. To make January even shittier… David Bowie has gone far above the moon.

In February, things were still not looking great. Continuing the Zika Virus crisis, World Health Organization [WHO] declared global public health emergency. And let’s remember that Zika Virus started way before that. But I guess people started thinking about the Olympic Games in Brazil, later in August, and then thought about how bad things could become if the virus wasn’t controlled… People starting to fly from all over the world to the epic centre of the disease. Still in the second month of the year, something really important: someone bought John Lennon’s lock of hair for $35,000 at an auction. Let’s not discuss how relevant this is for the world’s sanity and for the music industry. At least we can end February with two positive events: Fifty Shades of Grey won worst film, worst actor, and worst actress in the 36th Razzies Award, AND Leo DiCaprio won – finally – his first best actor Oscar.

Let’s start March. Bill Gates is no longer the richest person in the world… Well, I guess that did not impact my life. However, something that might have affected A LOT of people was the fact that the Russian President, Putin, ordered their troops out of Syria. At around the same time, in Brazil, Lula (the former President), was blocked by federal judges to assume the position as Chief of Staff – no comments on that, be a Brazilian and understand it. Or not. I also met Justin Trudeau, the Canadian Prime Minister, in March of 2016 – so I guess it wasn’t that bad for me. Was March still good for you?

Well, certainly April started very well… ha ha ha! Panama Papers. Why everything that takes a lot of space in the media during a few weeks is then forgotten? I don’t understand how such relevant facts that happen around the world can be seen as insignificant by the population. Hello? Wherever you are from, I’m sure your leader was mentioned in the Panama papers. Something that did not have much space in the media, but is actually very nice: the first baby born with DNA from three parents! Be careful when having a threesome from now on… Just saying. Let’s end April like this.

By May, on a Friday the 13, I had already broken three bones. I mean literally. I know it wasn’t that bad with me… But for other people, I imagine 2016 did not bring pleasant surprises. As an example, Fort McMurray wildfires… Oh… Don’t know where to start. This was devastating! For those of you who don’t know, this is located in Canada, and it was so bad that more than 80,000 people had to leave the area, their houses. And things are looking pretty bad, but there’s always a way to be worse. Michel Temer, former vice-president of Brazil, became the actual President, after Dilma Rousseff was impeached. Also in May, such devastating news, at least for me: If it wasn’t enough for people to kill people in front of the media, now people start killing animals and it’s all legal: a gorilla was shot in the US, after dragging a boy who fell into the animal’s cage. I got angry at that… I don’t want to discuss it, but you can reflect upon that: from all perspectives! May was bad.

In June, Barack Obama has no choice other than endorsing Hillary Clinton as Democratic Presidential nominee. We’re discussing more about that later, but I know you can’t wait until is November. Or not. Zika Virus is still going on, and WHO also suggested that women delay pregnancy. Pregnancy is such a personal decision, and we’re at a stage where public entities need to “suggest you what to do”. In the US again, a gunman alleging to be from Islamic State killed 49 people at a nightclub. I think I have to say it was a gay nightclub, but this should not be relevant… We’re in 2016 AFTER CHRIST. And since it’s AC, we can already comment on the human species impact on the Planet Earth: the first mammal was made extinct because of Climate Change.  Yes, Climate Change is here, and you can’t deny it! Oh well, June is not over yet, because I did not mention that United Kingdom left the European Union. Brexit, my friends. Brexit. More egocentric things to come, my dear…

July 1st already has events that are devastating. In the end, all will prove how bad 2016 was – is. Islamic militants kill 20 people in Bangladesh – I know I did not mention terrorism in the other months, but you know it happened. If you didn’t, you can see some of the terrorist attacks here. It was not a game of catching terrorists, it wasn’t a game of spreading love. No. Pokemon Go was the one, catching Pikachu was trendy in July. Nintendo shares rose considerably. And then dropped. Nintendo does not hold ownership of Pokemon Go. Not full ownership at least. Way to go World! It was also in July that I found out my dog has cancer. It was bad for me, it was probably bad for you… And so it was for the world.

August. Olympic games in Brazil, and Michael Phelps ended his career, winning of course. Surprisingly, no major incidents happened in Brazil. Fire. Similar to Fort McMurray wildfires, in California, a 15,000 acres area is devastated and again more than 82,000 people evacuated from their houses. I can literally say that 2016 was the year the world was on fire, and the world can’t be happy about it. August was another crappy month in 2016. Wait, it’s not over yet: a massive earthquake killed almost 300 people in Italy. Let’s end it.

Mother Teresa was canonized by Pope Francis early in September. It’s good to start the month with a little bit of faith, because Jesus, there’s more shit to come. A boat carrying around 600 people “capsizes off the Egyptian coast”, and only 163 people are rescued. Tragic moment of the ninth month of the year. Hurricane Matthew also happened that month… and if you don’t remember, it killed more than a thousand people in Haiti, Caribbean and US. If you think there’s enough tragedy in the world already in nine months, is because you don’t remember what happened October and November.

October was the month the song lyrics were finally recognized as poetry and art, when Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for Literature. I think we can all agree to leave the other bad things that happened in October out of the equation… There’s still November to cover, and things will get blurry.

Two months to the end of the year… We still can’t call 2016 done. The air pollution is so bad in India that the government has to declare an emergency situation in Delhi, where schools and construction sites were closed. That’s just one more bad thing that humans provoked. Humans also provoked Donald J. Trump to be elected President of the US. I feared that… I still fear it – not his government only, but I fear why people elected him. Trump is the core of a racist, sexist, nonsense, and cocky person in the US. People who elected him: aren’t them just the same?

December did not start yet. But you can make your bets. How good is the last month of 2016 going to be? If I was able to write so pessimistically about the year of 2016 for eleven months, why don’t we try making December a better month? Maybe one that’s so good, that we can overcome the horrible things that happened throughout the past 318 days. If it’s not good for the whole world, please try and make it for yourself. I’m already making my plans for December. And it’s going to be good.

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