I’ve never been someone who makes new year’s resolutions. I have little-to-no will power and ideas like running a marathon aren’t exactly incentives. But this year there are a few resolutions I think all Londoners should make collectively, to make our city not-shit in 2017.
For starters, we won’t be huffy when the tube takes more than five minutes to arrive. We won’t angrily tweet a grainy picture of whatever crowded platform we’re stuck on. And when someone tells us that all the seats are gone on the top deck of the bus, we won’t go and check anyway because we think our eyes work better than theirs.
We’ll stop blaming public transport when we’re late for work and openly admit it’s because we stopped to buy a coffee and a croissant on the way into the office. We also won’t make plans to meet up with friends and turn up 20 minutes late because we assume they’ll be late too.
We’ll only queue for art shows we actually want to see, rather than those we’re just going to for the sake of taking a good Instagram picture. That being said, we’ll make more effort to go to art shows, even on the other side of the city.
We’ll go out more – because at this rate, who knows how long London will have clubs for? And now we know we can save a club like Fabric from closure, we’ll keep fighting harder than ever to save London’s venues. We’ll sign petitions, protest and campaign for a better city in 2017, and keep Sadiq on his toes while we’re at it.
We solemnly swear not to eat the same Pret sandwich for lunch three times a week. We won’t get an Uber when a bus would take less than 20 minutes. We’ll chat politely to cab drivers like our mums would like to think we did, rather than sitting in glassy-eyed silence (unless it’s 9am and we’ve been on the sesh since after-work drinks the night before).
We’ll be honest with ourselves and stop deleting Tinder because we think we’re too cool for it, only to redownload it a month later when we’re desperate for the touch of another human. We’ll stop ordering online shopping to our office: all those delivery vans increase congestion in central London and contribute to our city becoming the most polluted in Europe.
We won’t moan about gentrification while sipping a matcha latte in a bougie new deli on Hackney Road. We’ll accept we’re part of the problem and do our best to stop social cleansing by demanding more genuinely affordable homes (while conceding that sometimes getting a nice new cheese shop can be a good thing).
We’ll stop making jokes about hipsters with beards. Hipsters don’t have beards any more.
We’ll make an effort to talk to people who might have views we don’t agree with. We won’t describe Brexit as a ‘northern thing’ when, come on guys, look at Kent. We’ll look out for each other more, whether that’s standing up for a woman getting catcalled, stepping in when we hear someone saying something racist, or waking up someone who has fallen asleep on the night tube. We’ll even give tourists directions. Correct ones.
Most importantly, we’ll promise to keep spreading the message that London should be a city of acceptance and tolerance, no matter what’s happening in the rest of the world. And finally, let’s agree once and for all: rainbow-dyed food is so 2016.