FEW people were sorry to see the back of 2016, and are hoping that 2017 will bring a little more cheer. In our light-hearted wish-list for the year ahead we outline 99 things we’d like to see in 2017.
We’d like you, our readers, to supply number 100.
So here are our 99…
More buskers, fewer chuggers
Snow next Christmas
Celtic to win the Scottish League. They are, after all, just a GAA club pretending to be a soccer team
More Ian McEwan books
An end to people saying ‘feck’. If you can’t say the real word, then leave it out. Or else you might very well find yourself in heck, or at the very least, in deep sugar
Alarm clocks that make no sound, just wave a flag. Come on science, what about it?
More Nordic Noir box sets
A totally over the top amount of Aidan Turner
Definitely more of Ruth Negga
An excessive degree of poetry
Another Mrs Brown’s Boys movie. And although fans may be aghast at the thought, what about going global? Dustin Hoffman in the title role could do it: Mrs Brown’s Boys: D’Hollywood Movie
Irish politicians to stay at home on St Patrick’s Day. Give us the money and we’ll go to New York, Boston, Sydney instead
A bit of hush. As we fast approach a world where silence will have passed into legend, let us hope for a few more quiet carriages which really are quiet
Bigger demonstration placards. When do we want them? Now…
More walking — you’ll rarely regret going for a walk. There’s a hill for every ill
Oodles of champagne — always keep a bottle in the fridge. If someone says they’re not sure what they want to drink, they want champagne. And you probably do too.
Tons of photograph and selfies. Pix are a great memory-jogger, and because we tend to take photos of happy occasions, they weight our memories to the better.
…on the other hand: try this — draw a sketch instead. You’ll remember it better
Ireland to win the Eurovision Song Contest
Ireland to utterly own the Six Nations
Shane MacGowan on Desert Island Discs
An end to “Don’t go there.” Where is ‘there’? And are all the people there wondering why nobody is coming, the poor divils?
A workers’ revolution in the morning, and a nice Italian meal in the evening
Greater attention. “Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity.” (Simone Weil, in case you’re wondering)
A sequel to Lord of the Flies — Lady of the Flies. What would have happened on that island if it had been girls and not boys marooned? Over to you Edna O’Brien.
All celebrities to be reminded of the Emily Dickinson lines: “Fame is a bee / It has a song / It has a sting / Ah, too, it has a wing.”
More avocados. Good for your health, delicious too
A summer that doesn’t set in with its usual severity
Fewer restaurants that look like an unfinished Hoxton loft. We’ve had enough of shabby chic interiors.
A definitive answer to the Brexit/Irish border question
A stop on the word ‘iconic’. Unless you’re talking about Greek or Russian religious paintings, give it a rest.
Fewer motivational quotes on social media. Don’t know about you, but nothing gets us motivated for more than 10-15 seconds like a good inspirational quote
Less social media, more social intercourse
No more ‘Brexit means Brexit’. “Heard it till we’re sick of it” means “Heard it till we’re sick of it”
Cheaper train fares
Wider seats on the 737s, Michael. We passengers might be ‘self-loading cargo’ as per current airline-speak, but we deserve a decent place to plank our bums
An end to restaurants serving meals on slates or bringing you the bill on an iPad in a bucket (seriously, an iPad in a bucket)
Drive (and walk) the Wild Atlantic Way. It really is as good as the hype
Smiling faces. Beautiful places
More flowers. In vases, in valleys, in lapels — anywhere
Planned days, nights left to chance
Leicester FC to win the Champions’ League
More Starlight Royale cocktails — drink at least one a week. Lime juice, gin, and grenadine, topped off by club soda. Sheer sorcery
Festivals in Ireland. Get yourself to one this year — whether it’s an oyster festival or a ploughing extravaganza, you’ll have a ball
An end to deskfast, or eating your brekkie at work. Breakfast means breakfast
San Francisco. Go there. You might lose your heart to somebody. If not, you’ll still have a rollicking time
Even more poetry. In fact, go and learn some. “I will arise and go now and go and thingy whatsit. . . .” really doesn’t cut it.
Stay at Ghan House in Carlingford. Huge views, luxury digs, stiff drinks
Star-gazing. For those of you haven’t seen, on a clear frosty night, Orion as he strides silently across the winter sky, or a meteor from some distant galaxy rip the heavens apart, we recommend an evening walk
More clandestine trysts, maybe even a few dangerous liaisons
A chilly hallelujah from skylarks singing in the clear air somewhere
Poached eggs Grand Duc for breakfast
Gardening. Stick you dibber into some mulch. It’s hugely rewarding
More from Camille O’Sullivan. You’d pay just to hear this woman gargle
More charity. “The only gift is giving to the poor. All else is exchange.” Thiruvalluvar, (c.30 BC)
Fewer. People. Who. Write. Like. This. Please. Stop. It. Now
More tolerance (Except. For. People. Who. . . etc)
More David Attenborough
David Attenborough to find the Yeti
…and the Loch Ness Monster
More newspaper aficionados
Another safe year in the air. 2016, despite terrorist incidents and some horrific high-profile crashes, was one of the safest years ever. And air travel is important to us island people
More flattery. Even though we’re not fooled by it, it shows we’re significant enough to be courted
Eamon Holmes to be the new James Bond
More walks in fine, soft rain
New gods. We’ve had all sorts. The god of thunder. The god of war. We need a god-of-chilling-out
Theresa May to take Prime Minister’s Questions wearing a Groucho Marx mask, specs-and-moustache and all
More art gallery visiting
A spooky Halloween. Much more fun than Easter
Less complaining about a smartphone. Get a life
More Ed Sheeran
More Chilean sauvignon blanc
More urban myths. Where have they all gone? They used to arrive by the skipload in our inboxes.We particularly liked the one about the tomato tree growing in a woman’s mouth because she’d left a tomato seed lodged in a tooth filling
Tabloids telling Kate Middleton aka Duchess of Cambridge “We couldn’t care less what you do.”
More oysters. We want rampant bivalvery
Further Guinness to go with said oysters
A FANGTASTIC celebration to mark the 120th anniversary of Dracula, written by one of one of Ireland’s most extraordinary sons, Bram Stoker
Series 7 of Game of Thrones to be more gripping than ever
Aliens arriving from a distant galaxy. Not sure where we’d take them if they asked to see our leader. We’d have to stall: “Er, it’s like this you see… *[SHUFFLES FEET]…em…”
A Nobel Prize in Physics for Armagh woman Susan Bell Burnell who was cheated out of her rightful prize in 1974. She discovered pulsars. Maybe they should thrown in a Michelin Star and an Oscar for this outstanding woman
More cat videos on YouTube. How about a kitten playing the guitar while reading out a listicle of the greatest rock bands of all time?
Lashings of coconut cake and cream
A revival of the film series Strumpet City, based on the novel by James Plunkett. A terrific story set around the time of the Dublin lock-out in 1913
Rory McIllroy to win the Masters at Augusta and don the green jacket
No more booing England at international matches when they’re playing someone other than Ireland. We’re mature, reconstructed Celts now, very self-confident, and no need for petty gamemanship. So it’s time to get over that. Mind you when the England rugby supporters start braying “Swing low, sweet chariot…” it will be hard. Very hard.
Less moaning about the traffic. Buy a bike
Susan Boyle to sing the Irish national anthem at Croke Park
Outlandish dressing up for Bloomsday
An Oscar for Brendan Gleeson for Alone in Berlin
More Imelda May
More Bach. He was probably better at what he did than any human being has been at anything
More philosophy. Do you think, or do you only think you think? Kind of thing
A camogie match to be played at a packed Wembley stadium
More uilleann piping
Free wifi everywhere