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2021 Checklist
Image: Time Out

The 2021 checklist

How many year-defining experiences can YOU tick off?

Written by
Kate Lloyd
Time Out editors

Well, it’s certainly been a year hasn’t it. 2021 has brought with it unique quirks that humankind has never endured before: seeing a man shove a flare up his butt to celebrate England’s football success, for a start. As we finish off this year (with perhaps less of a bang than we thought two months ago) it’s time to look back on the year-defining experiences we’ll always remember the past 12 months by.  

  1. Attending the first freezing cold park meet up with six people.

  2. Not knowing what to do when spotting a group of seven having a picnic.

  3. Mastering the art of balancing takeaway food on bins.

  4. Power-walking across a park to reach the nearest public toilet… only to find it shut.

  5. Going to a ‘seated outdoor club’ that’s actually a picnic bench in a wind tunnel.

  6. Having an 11am pint for the pub reopening because all the pubs had been booked weeks in advance. 

  7. Running out of storage on your phone because you’ve downloaded 25 different order-to-table apps.

  8. Having to just go up to the bar anyway because the app is incredibly glitchy and for some reason you can’t use Monzo on it.

  9. Being at your first gig back and being surprised at how bloody loud it is!

  10. Finally going to a gig you booked in 2019 and realising you don’t really like the artist any more. 

  11. Returning to festival toilets after a year off and being too disgusted to use them.

  12. Being caught in the Catch-22 of not being able to go into a shop and buy a mask because you forgot your mask.

  13. Complaining at the unfairness of being pinged.

  14. Finding some sort of self-justification to turn off your Bluetooth to avoid being pinged.

  15. Immediately forgetting what pinging was as soon as it stopped being a thing.

  16. Realising that being pinged was actually a great excuse to get out of things and that you miss it.

  17. Tweeting ‘BIMINI WAS ROBBED’.

  18. Then tweeting ‘KITTY SCOTT CLAWS WAS ROBBED’ six months later.

  19. Getting far too emotionally involved in the ‘FREE BRITNEY’ campaign.

  20. Getting far too emotionally involved in Meghan and Harry’s Oprah interview.

  21. Spending literally hours of your life looking at pictures of Jack Grealish’s calves.

  22. Perhaps entertaining the lads with a cheeky little arse flare.

  23. Googling ‘what is an NFT’.

  24. Genuinely freaking out when it became legal for strangers to sit next to you.

  25. Realising sweaty clubs smell really bad?!

  26. Deciding to grow curtains and/or a mullet after doing a 2020 buzz cut.

  27. Cancelling all the subscriptions you set up in 2020.

  28. Except Beer52 because the nice old man on the line offered you a free book if you stayed.

  29. Seriously thinking about getting a dog but then ultimately not getting a dog.

  30. Being forced to admit to yourself that watching football in empty stadiums is shit.

  31. Forwarding that Streets’ song ‘Who’s Got The Bag’ to your friends.

  32. Forwarding Munya Chawawa’s Matt Hancock parody video to all your friends.

  33. Getting hooked on It’s A Sin.

  34. Getting hooked on Squid Game.

  35. Realising you have a sordid little crush on one of the Succession boys.

  36. Realising you would probably die for Adele?

  37. Going to six delayed pandemic weddings in the space of a month.

  38. Going to a club a month after having Covid and feeling invincible against the virus for the first time in a year.

  39. ‘Is it Covid or am I hungover?’

  40. ‘Is it Covid or is it the monster cold?’

  41. Coughing on the bus when you know it’s 100 percent the monster cold and wanting to tell your concerned fellow passengers.

  42. Getting super-excited for human contact then realising you’ve lost the ability to communicate.

  43. Panicking that your lateral flow test will be positive and you can’t go out.

  44. Feeling suddenly knackered because of All The Socialising and panicking that the going out was too much to handle.

  45. Desperately scrambling to find your Covid pass at the front of the queue for the club while a masked bouncer loses patience with you.

  46. The same but at the airport.

  47. Failing to go on holiday because you didn’t fill in 32 forms.

  48. Successfully going on holiday and filling in 32 forms no one subsequently asked for.

  49. Realising you’ve been doing lateral flows wrong for the past two years and you’ve been swabbing the dangly bit at the back of your throat.

  50. Realising some meal kits expect you to actually breadcrumb and deep-fry your own goujons.

  51. Realising some meal kits expect that you have more than four hob rings.

  52. Having five million versions of the ‘did you get Pfizer?’ ‘no Moderna’ conversations.

  53. Having five million versions of the ‘aren’t those Amazon supermarkets?’ conversation.

  54. Being cancelled on by an Uber

  55. Being cancelled on by a Bolt.

  56. Not even realising the Olympics was on.

  57. Looking guiltily at the £30 ‘clay kit’ you bought last year knowing it will never be used.

  58. Deleting Strava from your phone.

  59. Deleting Couch to 5k.

  60. Feeling totally and utterly exhausted and like Christmas can’t come soon enough.
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