2020: The Missing Year


Remember 2019? Those were the good old days, weren’t they?

We could run down to the corner market without a care in the world. As I recall, we naively looked forward to a Disneyland trip in 2020. Or was it Paris? Kids clamored aboard school buses; parents barked at their kids about all the screen time. Kooks and nuts were still throwing around hare-brained conspiracy theories, but at least they weren’t whimpering about wearing a mask. In fact, I recall actual encounters with human beings who weren’t wearing facial coverage and didn’t assume they were crazy-assed monsters.

Zoom was no big thing back then; sort of a nuisance, really, and not emblematic of our doomed future of interpersonal relationships.

Was that only 12 months ago?

Twelve months ago we could do a bunch of things that we really should avoid during this Toxic Mess known as 2020. Remember business trips? Hearty handshakes? Meaningful hugs? The bar scene? Free samples at Costco? Congregational passings of the peace?

I vaguely recall a time when a hike in the woods didn’t require elaborate virus-prevention measures.

How about you? What did you miss during 2020? It seems sort of impossible to live through a year like this without coming away with some lasting impressions about the meaning of life.

Voices of Monterey Bay is asking readers to share their thoughts about MMXX. We set up a nifty survey with wide-open questions to serve as a guide. They say writing stuff down is good for the soul. So here’s your chance.

Note: Our survey is meant to be fun and easy. But if, while answering our questions, you find yourself weeping uncontrollably about a lost society and distant memories of kindly strangers, please don’t stress. Simply step away from your handheld device, scrub your hands in hot soapy water for 20 seconds, check your dispensary stash and turn on Netflix. 

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Joe Livernois

About Joe Livernois

Joe Livernois has been a reporter, editor and columnist in Monterey County for 35 years.

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