L: I’m literally right here. Sitting next to you. You don’t need to yell.
N: But I like yelling. This is a very yelly year.
L: You’re not wrong. Remember our 2020 year in review?
N: Should I? I told you nobody reads these. Including us.
L: Something about 2021 asking 2020 to hold her beer?
N: Fuck, so it’s our fault? Why can’t we just keep our gob holes shut?
L: It is, we can’t, we didn’t, and it happened.
N: Not sure if 2021 was the best of times or the worst of times, but it was… times.
L: Let’s start with the best…
L: Shh, I’m thinking… Never mind, better to just puke meatballs on the wall and see what sticks.
N: … we said we would never speak of that again.
L: shrug emoji.
N: Let’s try some new categories.
- Auroras. Shit, we didn’t win again this year. Or get nominated. Or vote. Fucking Auroras.
- New books! We released three fucking fantastic tomes that people actually purchased and claimed to read. Including Unfortunate Elements of My Anatomy by the amazing Hailey Piper (now in hardcover!), The Walking Son by the unnerving Eddie Generous, and the much anticipated by absolutely no one, Terrace VI: Forbidden Fruit, curated by yours truly and featuring a gaggle of gluttonous contributors including Mike Thorn, Robin van Eck, Julie Hiner, Eddie Generous, Cam Hayden, and Konn Lavery.
- Another fucking virtual When Words Collide. Jesus Christ…
- Lola had stories out in Vastarien Vol. 3, Issue 2, and the Short Sharp Shocks series.
- Co-wrote Corn Dogs, a Ukrainian taco-fueled, hell hound infested Trace and Solomon holiday boondoggle set in Taber. We took out the sex and cussing and sold it for real money!
- Finished drafts our novels. They suck and we love them.
- Noggy got taken for an absolute ride by vengeful poets in agreeing to put together the AWCS 40th Anniversary anthology.
- Non-virtual TST Nightmares before Christmas party! Celebrating our 2021 books with the debut performance of The Deadly Skulls, noise complaints and all.
- First Vaccination. When everyone was getting the Pfizer Cadillac, we hopped a ride on the AZ hillbilly hay truck down a road full of potholes.
- Witchcraft. Look, we trapped an Elemental in a candle. It’s still there. In the back of a drawer. We don’t know what to do. Help us… please.
- Found a butt shaped rock on a full moon run. Serendipity.
- The bug in Lola’s eye. ROFL!.
- Tetanus shots.
- Second vaccination. Yay, Pfizer!
- Skinny dipping in the river. While high. Wearing dress shoes. Coming back to find our clothes covered in slugs.
- Running the Blackspur Ultra in Kimberly. In the rain. In the cold. Uphill both ways. Epic chafing. Meatballs. Meatballs, in reverse.
- Running the Lost Soul Ultra in Lethbridge. In the rain. In the cold. On fucking pavement.
- Noggy running the Whistler Alpine Meadows Ultra, with acute Achilles bursitis.
- Third vaccination. Are we done yet?
- Shockwave therapy! It’s like fun, but with extra medieval torture.
- Dogma Logs (see image above).
- Noggy’s birthday. Cannoli in a parking lot.
- Wedding Anniversaries. Latest and last.
- Living our best lives in parental basements and decommissioned love hotels.
- Shrek-themed birthday party for Lola. Random, yet utterly perfect.
- Cursed pies.
- Weird Thanksgiving.
- Betty Lou’s Library speakeasy followed by dinner with the Russian mob.
- Taylor’s Version everything! Lola is obsessed. Noggy will sing along three sidecars deep.
- Solstice: sneaking in a yule log into Fairmont Hotel #1, praying to Hecate, cayenne pepper in the carpet, poking our noses where they don’t belong, five bourbons and an eggnog at the Tipsy Elf.
- Weirder Christmas
- Dead Week: the most wonderful time of the year
2022 SNEAK PEEK
- Naked Snow Angels (there may be pictures).
- Roofied by Lola’s dad and his weed infused absinthe punch.
- Hell Hath no Sorrow Like a Woman Haunted by R.J. Joseph and Terrace V: Penitent’s Gold curated by us!
- Lawyer fees.
- Vaccinations 4, 5, and 6?
- Squamish Ultra and the Triple WAMmy with like fifty thousand feet of vert.
- Hopefully some writing.
N: Soooo. No way we should have survived.
L: Yet here we are.
N: Are we though?
L: Where ever here is. In spite of it all, I’m still happier now than I was a year ago.
N: That’s the literal four thousand cocktails speaking, and maybe that weed punch.
L: I predict the first half of 2022 will be like the signature Icelandic shark dish Hákarl, it’s gotta ferment five months before it’s non-toxic.
N: We’ll wash it down with Arby’s and extra-large DQ Blizzards come July.
N: Jesus, Lola…what?
L: It’s January 11, 2021.
N: Congratulations, you learned to read a calendar. Next, you’re going tell me it’s 6:43 p.m.
L: Shut up, I just meant eleven days is enough time to get some perspective on the most remarkable year in living memory.
N: Hate to break it to you, Silkysocks but I don’t even remember what happened last week.
L: Put the bottle down and let’s do this.
N: Fine, but let the record show I am aggrieved. Are we even allowed to talk about this stuff? People might get mad.
L: For that to happen they’d have to read our blog.
N: Which no one has. Ever.
L: So, let’s warm up with the good. We had two whole months that weren’t a pandemic.
- Launched End of the Loop and Starseed by getting drunk on something blue called Sex in (on?) the Driveway and presenting the first and possibly last episode of Between Two Flames over Zoom. Poor Guy…
- Attended Wordbridge in Little LA and got lost in a blizzard tryin’ to find Arby’s.
- Celebrated Noggy’s b-day sucking the cream out of a bunch of cannoli.
- Summer road trip to BC. Noggy, Lola, and Particle Man, running through the mountains, angering the gods, and capping it off riding Sturgeons in Revelstoke for Lola’s Birthday.
- Bloody Offensive Literary Salon. A real boner of a good time.
- Neither of us got fired/arrested/strip-searched or investigated for crimes against the living or dead. Or god(s).
- Crashed a wedding. That sooo needed crashing.
- Attended 80’s themed book launch in the most disgusting dive in the city on the coldest day in twenty years. Noggy really took a shine to his red metallic leggings. Cash bar. Bathrooms physically residing in Hell. But hey, great band!
- Noggy & Lola’s alter egos saw their very first co-written story, about Grandpa’s freezer meat, purchased for actual money, and published in an actual book called Chew on This!
- Road trip to Taber, complete with lunch at the Mexican-Ukrainian fusion restaurant and Lola desecrating Noggy’s grandfather’s grave (details redacted, but there were haunted soul holes and spiders. And owls.).
- Wrote an epic poem for Particle Man’s birthday “The Many Deaths of Particle Man.”
- Taylor Swift released two new amazing records!
- Exotic cocktails with the Secret Saturday Night Quarantine Society.
- Working from home.
- First name basis at local liquor stores.
- Full moon runs.
- Jaja Ding Dong.
- Lola dropped her phone down a mountain trying to take a picture of a goat.
- Virtual events. They suck. Good Merciful Gary, do they suck. Even ours. Especially ours.
- Writer podcasts that are 1hr+ of aimless, unedited yammering – but we listened anyways, cause.
- All races, literary events, festivals, and conventions cancelled. Although this is probably why we didn’t get fired or arrested.
- Everyone deciding they need to get some fucking fresh air, dawdling about in enormous groups clogging entire paths.
- Doing the summer scavenger hunt and Lola having to be nice to the path cloggers.
- Doing the summer scavenger hunt and Noggy forbidding Lola from sticking her hiking pole in some idiot cyclist’s spokes.
- Noggy forced to listen repeatedly to two new Taylor Swift records.
- Perturbed skunks on a full moon run.
- Sunday mornings.
- Trying to work from home with your entire family up your ass.
- Lola’s number one Spotify song: Jaja Ding Dong.
- This is eerily mostly the same list as The Good.
- Actually missing open mic poetry about rocks and streams and dead parents.
- Noggy projectile vomiting 65km into our 80km self-directed urban ultra-marathon. That bush is dead now, the city bench melted. They should really replace the memorial plaque.
- Lola setting her hair on fire doing witchcraft.
- Running 420km in December + Eggnog + Herring Rollmops.
- Homeschooling six (6) gremlins.
- 11 p.m. Particle Man ukulele singalongs (the other hotel guests loved it).
- The mall. Any malls. All malls.
- IT WILL NEVER BE ENOUGH!
Bonus List: The Weird
- Running at dusk and finding ourselves, no shit, surrounded by beavers.
- Approached by an elfin teenaged boy after dark and offered a cookie.
- Along the river finding many, many elaborate dwellings constructed from deadfall.
- Elementals chasing us off Mount Okanagan.
- Repeated sex dreams about all our friends.
- The metallic pants, again. Noggy can’t get enough.
- Lola’s cover girl debut…as a corpse.
- And, as always, the weird wonderful constant in this topsy turvy world: Arby’s
In closing, there’s a lot more we could have added, but Legal has advised us to quit while we’re not in contravention of any number of municipal bylaws or provincial health orders. Suffice it to say, it’s been a trip. From the looks of it, 2021 is already asking 2020 to hold her beer, and you know what? We can’t wait.