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AN A TO Z OF 2020

With all its catastrophe and foibles


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It’s been a year. Lockdown melded time into one. Minutes turned into days. Hours into months. It was mid March. You blinked, bemoaned Boris, clapped for carers, and suddenly, it was August and the sun was heavy and hot. Tiger King and banana bread were but a distant memory. The ‘I’m fine’ facade came down and the tree went up. Did you catch that? Oh, I’m on mute? Sorry. Now? As I was saying…

A is for abomination. Specifically saying it, but not having to qualify it.

B is for Black Lives Matter, now and always. Doing better and doing more. Recognising that racism is not just obvious or overt, but subtle and systemic too. Educating ourselves, and not leaning on others. Learning behind the scenes, when no-one is watching. Holding ourselves and others accountable, even if, and specifically when, it feels most uncomfortable.

C is for cardigans, the item of clothing (cosy, cosseting) and Cardigan, Taylor Swift's new song. 

D is for Dominic Cummings and that car crash of an interview in the rose garden. Fortunately, despite driving with severely compromised eyesight en route to Castle Barnard, there was no actual car crash.

E is for the elephant in the room that is Boris saying it was inhuman to cancel Christmas, and then four days later, cancelling Christmas, meaning that he is, by his own yardstick, inhuman.

F is for furlough, a word that was apparently a word before the Chancellor's furlough scheme. Sure.

G is for ‘Great!’ which is a simultaneously positive or sardonic retort to almost absolutely anything.

H is for holidays, and all those that were cancelled: Eid; Diwali; Hanukkah; Christmas; Ibiza; South Africa and Oz.

I is for the impeachment that never really was.

J is for justice, or lack thereof. See aforementioned impeachment and Black Lives Matter for more details.

K is for Karen and Ken memes that were spread with the same intensity as the Coronavirus.

L is for lots of fucking weird dreams.

M is for minutes, because what are those?

N is for Nigella, the nation’s fish finger mashing, microwave mispronouncing sweetheart - “but not because [she] think[s] that’s how it’s actually pronounced.”

O is for overstaying your welcome in White House, like an after party straggler on the hunt for a sunrise line of cocaine.

P is for pollution levels and the temporarily cheering fact that lockdown managed to clean the air.

Q is for The Queen’s Gambit teaching us everything we know about chess – so absolutely nothing.

R is for Rashford, and the unleashing of activism so effective, it caused the government to do not one, but two U-Turns.

S is for the Sussexes, because if it weren’t for the pandemic, you may still care that they stepped in a puddle.


T is for TikTok and the cumulative hours we’ve spent in its hypnotic, boundless snare.

U is for the unprecedented times we’re in, folks. Hope you’re keeping safe and sane.

V is for vaccine, and Oxford’s female led, full steam ahead brilliance.

W is for Wagatha Christie, and its perfectly timed resuscitation. Pass the popcorn.

X is for all the kisses you’re going to plant on your grandparents when they’ve had vaccine part 2.

Y is for Yesterday, which in COVID times, is generally the same as today.

Z is for Zovirax because you are exhausted, and alongside ulcers, have mask-ne, cold sores, a bunion and a UTI.

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