2016 has only a few days left and by any observable metric has been fucking horrible. From the death of idols like Bowie and Lemmy (yeah, I know he was 2015 but that seemed to be the start of this) through to my own stroke and diagnosis of cancer, was made worse by watching even more idols like Prince or Muhammed Ali pass away while braying arseholes like Nigel Farage or Boris Johnson celebrate Brexit, let alone the knuckle-dragging cave-creatures that cheer on Donald Trump.
Then George Michael died and it somewhat hit me how close my own mortality came to ending this year. I’ve never been a fan of the man’s music, but he always struck me as a decent enough bloke and stuck by striking miners, paid his taxes and he despised the Tories which is good enough by me. But at 53, only four years older than myself, it kicked in not because Michael was an idol of mine, but I saw him as a person first and a millionaire pop star second. It hit and sent the creeping dread that is my anxiety (which has been regularly kicking me mentally in the bollocks on and off since February) into overdrive.
For those of us who aren’t drooling at the thought of removing human rights, or hurting the disabled (whose ranks I joined this year) or are ‘alt-right’ (neo-Nazis to decent people) it seems the good guys are dropping like flies and the bad guys aren’t just in control, but they’re the majority.
Those panels above and from the glorious comic Preacher, and they’re resonating with me because when the shit is hitting the fan all we should do is try to be one of the good guys because there are way, way too many of the bad. I have no idea how things are going to work out for myself until February, but dwelling upon one’s mortality is reminding me of basics like trying to be one of the good guys even in my current mess.
I have no idea what I’ll do really until my hopefully final treatment for my cancer in February, and my physio to help with the slipped disc and stroke recovery is out the way. I’m hoping this is the end of February and I expect by then my head will have worked out what I want to do, but until then call this restating a mission to be one of the good guys because as bad as 2016 has been, 2017 is potentially going to be worse so we need all the good guys we can get.
And that is my message for the New Year…