I’ve reading up on those end-of-the-year “what the year meant” columns. 2023 was the year of this; 2023 was the year when that happened. You know the genre. It’s a silly exercise since years aren’t about anything. Or to the extent they are it’s all but impossible for those of us living through them to make any sense of what it might be. But it’s still an interesting canvas onto which people paint an experienced moment. To me it was the year when people seemed to settle into, get comfy with the idea that our present is one of never-ending terribles. Put differently, it was the year that many of you decided that the annus horribilis of 2016 was not a comically bad demolition derby of years or a bad year with several relatedly bad years following it but simply the arrival of a new normal.
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