2018: it was the best of times; it was the worst of times. Here are the lowest points of the year.

People voluntarily eat laundry detergent 

2018 started off with the greatest incident of mass stupidity the world has ever seen. The Tide Pod Challenge, a trend that encouraged people to eat laundry detergent capsules, swept the internet and jokes abound for a good month, with people filming themselves eating the solid detergent, fully aware that the contents are toxic to humans. If you needed any more evidence that humanity was not designed to succeed, this is it. I am now entirely convinced that people were never supposed to survive but we did out of sheer stubbornness, so now we have dug ourselves into a giant hole of desperation and stupidity where consuming laundry detergent is the only way out. Either that, or regressive evolution is a real thing and we are all slowly digressing to our impulsive “monkey brains.”

The most hyped up movie of the year, Avengers: Infinity War, turns out to be brutally disappointing 

For the past few years, Marvel Studios has been teasing an enormous film that would serve as the culmination of their action-packed blockbusters, a stunning conclusion to the strife of our favourite superheroes. When the trailer for Avengers: Infinity War came out, the internet collectively lost their minds over what promised to be the biggest movie of the year. However, Marvel Studios exclusively hires lying liars who lie because Infinity War was a disappointment of Hulk-sized proportions. Riddled with holes and unnecessary plotlines, the film was rife with confusion of what the ever-loving heck the Avengers think they’re doing. Furthermore, Thanos is quite possibly the most anti-climatic villain I’ve ever seen. I had grown accustomed to stylish, overwhelmingly classy, stunning beautiful antagonists in Marvel movies and was thoroughly disappointed in the jacked-up grape with a voice like a 16-wheeler and no sense of fashion presented to me. Fuming in my chair at the Cineplex, I kind of hoped I was the one who dissolved into dust. Maybe I would be able to forget the tragedy of what I had just watched.

Facebook is under fire (and on a booster seat)

2018 was rife with allegations of fake news and undermining of democratic principles, with Facebook perhaps receiving the brunt of it. Dealing with the Cambridge Analytica scandal CEO of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg was already having a tough time maintaining face when he was called to testify about Russian meddling in the 2016 Presidential Election. As if it wasn’t bad enough that the whole situation was reminiscent of the Cold War, Zuckerberg was utterly humiliated to a level akin of a 13-year-old boy getting kissed by his mom in front of everyone on his first day of school. Zuckerberg, who is notoriously short, had to sit on a seat cushion for the duration of his testimony. This may not seem like a big deal but think about it: you’re one of the richest men in the world, you are the creator of one of the defining aspects of the 21st century, you inspired the Academy Award-winning the Social Network, a stunning film starring an incredibly wet and attractive Andrew Garfield – and you, Mr. Zuckerberg, must face down members of Congress who know absolutely nothing about the internet while sitting on the fanciest booster seat of all time. How do you feel? Humiliated? Undignified? Are you developing anarchist viewpoints? Are you starting to wonder if this is your supervillain origin story? I’m just saying that if Zuckerberg decides to take over the world out of spite, I would not be surprised.

“Yanny” or “Laurel”? How about “get over it”?

The internet will fight over anything. Literally. Anything. This year, the “Yanny or Laurel?” debate fractured social media platforms the world over (not unlike the 2015 Dress Debate) as people argued over whether an audio clip was of somebody saying “Yanny” or somebody saying “Laurel,” because that’s the kind of thing we get angry about now. As memes go, it lasted far too long and gained way too much traction. Even respected news outlets debated about it, despite the readily accessible scientific explanation for the different sounds. It all lies in the pitch and the terrible quality of the original recording, an incredibly simple solution to an extremely polarizing issue. But then again, I cannot be surprised: we’ve been getting mad about petty things since the dawn of time. Overreacting is an essential aspect of the human condition. We are the most dramatic species on Earth, perhaps in the universe. I highly doubt aliens have anything akin to the drama of The Real Housewives of New Jersey or find any pleasure in watching two absurdly rich women duke it out with their stilettos. Or maybe they do. I’m not one to judge. For the record, I hear neither. It sounds like “Yarry” to me, but I’m not about to go to digital war over it.

Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson’s entire relationship

I have nothing against Ariana Grande nor Pete Davidson – in fact, I literally could not care less about what they do with their lives. Grande has had a rough time in the past couple of years, and she definitely deserves happiness after all that she has been through, and I figured that if Davidson could give her that, then so be it. But their relationship was kind of like watching a car crash in slow motion. You think you know how big the carnage is going to be when a semi wraps itself around that telephone pole, but when it actually happens, you never fail to be completely astonished. Their relationship was cute. Perhaps even adorable. The whole wide world got to see it unfold via Instagram and it helped fill the void in our hearts that just wants to live out a Nora Ephron film. Grande even put a song on her new album about him, which is way up there with “Cutest Romantic Gestures of All Time” (above sitting outside their house with a boombox but below sharing a single plate of spaghetti.) But like all good, innocent things, it came to an end. Maybe, one day, Grande will finally find a man who deserves her. Maybe Davidson will get a better haircut. Maybe their shared pet pig won’t need therapy. Maybe, maybe…

Elon Musk

Look, I’m just going to say it: Elon Musk looks like a Disney villain. He has the dumbest haircut known to man and I don’t think his cheekbones are real. Over the year, he has taken every possible measure to seem cool with young adults and has only succeeded in making himself the poster boy for Adults Trying to Seem Cool to Young People. Musk’s influence was not in his billions of dollars, luxury car manufacturing, or notable SpaceX rocket launches, but in his desperate attempt to seem like chill guy. Instead, he convinced the whole world he has the maturity of a 13-year-old boy when it comes to marijuana. The man smoked weed on public radio. He tried to make Tesla stock worth $420 just because he’d thought it’d be funny. He is one of the richest men in the world and has the impulse control of a golden retriever.

The United States Government proves once again it is incapable of functioning without a babysitter

The United States Senate officially reached peak stupidity at the beginning of the year, and it just kept on getting worse. In a stunning display of grown adults having a kindergartener mentality, the Senate managed to self implode when they could not garner enough people willing to talk to each other to overcome a Democrat filibuster. Three days of pure absurdity ensued, as Republicans and Democrats gave each other the silent treatment and ranted to news channels rather than do their freaking jobs. Honestly, I am impressed at how immature democratically elected officials can be. Small children are capable of working together, even after they disagree, but they seemingly lose the ability to compromise after their hair starts thinning. Therefore, the only logical conclusion is that fourth graders should be elected to powerful positions. Maybe they’ll actually get stuff done.

Donald Trump and Kim Jong-Un begin a loving relationship over mutual ridiculousness and affection for fascism 

Harry Truman is rolling in his grave, which is not normally something I would be opposed to, but I am also freaking out. It is no secret that Donald Trump would be a dictator if he could, but the U.S Constitution prevents him from being one. He has repeatedly expressed admiration for nationalistic and corrupt leaders, while touting the inherent freedom of America that he – and only he – has solidified. To further emphasize his hypocrisy (or idiocy, your choice) Trump got up close and personal with notorious dictator and violator of human rights Kim Jong-Un. Based on the photos, they seem like good friends. Maybe too good. The historic meeting of Trump and Kim led many to wonder if maybe the North Korean leader was playing the American President like a fiddle, and he probably is knowing his intellectual capacity. However, there may be a silver lining: if the USA and North Korea get along, exchange numbers, and go on a couple dates, we may be able to avoid nuclear fallout. Last year, we were scared that Trump and Kim would launch a nuclear war against each other in the most destructive pissing contest known to man, but now tensions have settled. Was it with the sacrifice of respect for human rights and basic human dignity? Yes. Can I find it in myself to care anymore? Not really.

Prince Harry gets hitched

Prince Harry was the UK’s most eligible bachelor since his brother, William, started balding. After establishing a reputation as a reformed party-animal, he was officially the Coolest Prince Ever and the subject of millions of crushes all over the Commonwealth. He was a ginger god, the lord of the bachelors, supreme ruler of teenage hearts. But then he got married. Which is – fine, okay, great for him, we’re happy for him, really! – absolutely terrible. His engagement to Megan Markle dashed millions of dreams of becoming a princess and awakened a newfound rage towards the monarchy unparalleled even by Oliver Cromwell. Harry getting hitched may just been the straw that breaks the camel’s back and leads to another bloody overthrow of the Royal Family, this time led by an army of young women. Will 2019 hold another English Revolution? Will we be able to get over the crushing blow of a prince choosing a gorgeous, intelligent, and successful actress over somebody he’s never met? Perhaps. Otherwise, vive la revolution.

Stoners get legally validated 

It turns out Justin Trudeau can actually do his job. After years of promising the legalization of marijuana for recreational use, JT finally followed through on his promise and did it. However, it was, as most things the federal government does, a complete dumpster fire – but the dumpster was filled with radioactive waste, and the firefighters were all on vacation. On the day weed was supposed to be legalized, only people in the middle-of-nowhere (a.k.a Kelowna) could actually get their hands on it. This basically amounted to sacrilege: Vancouver is the promised land for stoners worldwide, and while I don’t particularly like the smell of dead skunks, I was honestly disappointed when I was not assaulted with a giant cloud of weed the second I stepped on the Skytrain. Furthermore, there was a distinct lack of videos of our dear, youth-friendly Prime Minister smoking a joint. Is he really a Man of the People if he didn’t get high on Weed Day? I say not. In 2019, vote for somebody who actually lit up.

Disclaimer: please do not write angry emails to the editor. They go directly to me and I do not care if you cannot take a joke. Here’s to a better 2019. 

Photo credit to me and my amazing Photoshop skills.