New year, worse you: subverting resolution culture

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Editor’s note: Satire is one of peoples’ favorite coping mechanisms! This piece uses satire to playfully challenge the dominant culture that capitalizes on toxic positivity and exploits our need for acceptance.

A new year, a new controversy. Today, I’ll bring you a steaming pile — of what, exactly, is up to your determination. But here on “Bussy Beat,” I have to earn those 1-star ratings blue-haired people keep giving me. Today, as we delve into a new year that is likely going to be more of the same than anything else, I bring you unsolicited advice: become worse!

You might be thinking: Anya, have you finally gone completely unhinged? And the answer is, yes, totally, but that was long before I fixed my bony fingers to type this. Would it be completely irresponsible for me to suggest to anyone, impressionable or otherwise, to strip away everything about themselves to find out what *really* matters? Yes, and honestly, you should. If you’re unhappy with yourself, if you’re sad, if you’re listless, if pooping on public bathroom floors is no longer rustling your jimmies the way it used to, I bring you the best advice that was ever given to me: just give up.

Stop being you. You are not good enough, otherwise you would be a Kardashian. If you’re fat, starve yourself. I command you to, and you will do it, because I am ethnically ambiguous and have straight hair and clear skin — and that is enough to convince you that not only can I sing, but I should be in charge of your life. Do you have acne? Simply stop, and want more for yourself. Balding? Start taking estrogen. Do people keep misgendering you? Stop having pronouns, silly — they don’t matter, and nothing matters. Nothing except Season 2 of Euphoria (starring the president of all light-skinned people, Zendaya) available on HBO MAX January 9th.

Try to date an emotionally unavailable asshole with a drinking problem — I guarantee that will go great. Drink WAY too much and post paragraphs on your IG story and wake up to 20 DMs asking if you’re alright. Attempt to do witchcraft on yourself to encourage your BPD to switch hyperfixations to something cool, like ice skating — a sport so cool you get to wear blades on your feet. Have frustrations to vent? Stop seeing a therapist (because she gives you incorrect advice) and start bullying teenagers in the comments section of kpop videos on Youtube.

Don’t dye your hair pink — pink is my color, and you can’t have it. Instead, get a wolf cut or a mullet. Shop vintage. Buy flared jeans. Prepare for the inevitability of y2k coming back fully in fashion, and do crunches. Body shame yourself and friends. Become biphobic, but only between the hours of 4pm-6pm, when the bisexuals are busy having a headache about being attracted to men and cannot hear you. Become transphobic, even to yourself, if you are trans. Refer to yourself as a young man in a wig to watch people become uncomfortable and affirm you are a girl. Listen to Red Scare.

Are you tired of feeling like a hole? Stop having sex. Your holes will close, it is medical science. Your virginity will come back, and you will be pure again. When you glance at your genitals you will hear a church choir, for they will be as unused and unsullied as a League of Legends player — which, by the way, you should also attempt to get a chat ban on. Use slurs! Use all the slurs! Reject humanity. Embrace humanity after joining a cult — Allah may not stop you, but a cult leader who looks slightly like James Franco definitely will if you refuse to participate in the Tuesday group sex ritual. Abandon the cult, reform yourself, move cities. Move cities again. Keep moving cities — they will never find you if you keep running: nobody will know. You will never return to Silent Hill.

Once you are finished with that, have a nap. You deserve it, it’s been an eventful morning — it’s been an eventful year too. 2021 was a year wracked with loss, but that’s life; there’s always loss. We are always losing someone, in some way. With that knowledge, why are we self centered enough to think we might not be among those numbers? In my case, trans women are still being murdered brutally in record numbers. I’m still ostracized in cisnormative society and have to break my spine attempting to be palatable just to survive. How long before I become a memorial post? With this knowledge, why on earth would I submit to others’ ideas about how to  be “better,” or “happy,” or “correct?” A happy life isn’t a shoe that fits everyone: sometimes, you have to order that shoe online from a specialty shop (I don’t, however, because I have small, delicate feet, that I do not bite the toenails off of).

Every year, we’re forced to consume someone’s idea of healing, someone’s idea of health, someone’s idea of advancement and correctness and “new year, new you” — but I won’t. I won’t tell you to improve. Advancement isn’t linear, and sometimes it’s fun to be the worst possible version of yourself. Let’s be unhealthy. Let’s be awful! 

Or, let’s just do what works for us individually. Let’s heal ourselves in the ways that make us happy, toxic or maladaptive or cruel — let’s go forward into life with however many or however few resolutions and hopes we desire. Life is too short to be bound to the opinions and conceptions of others. 

This year, I’m going to ignore others and their input — unless, of course, that input is to watch Season 2 of Euphoria (starring the president of all light skinned people, Zendaya) available on HBO MAX January 9th.

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