Have A Seat 2016, It’s Time For Annual Performance Reviews

Hey 2016, come on in, sit down. How are things? What you got going now? New Year’s parties? End of year sales? Weather related fatalities? Good, good. Man, that takes me back.

PublicDomainPictures/Pixabay
Nothing rounds out the year like seeing a few guys fold in half and die over a shovel.

Anyways, it’s uhhhhhh……… time for our annual reviews here at YearCorp. I’ve been going through it with all the years here. 2014, 2011 they just did theirs. I’ve got 1993 doing mine later. So it’s something we all go through. Heh, no he’s ok.

It’s part formality, but it’s also tied to pay raises, and, uhhhhhh……. it can be a useful tool for improving ourselves. Furthering our own careers. So let’s take it seriously. Let’s really try here.

-fidgeting with paperwork-

So I guess just to get started, let’s get your perspective on how you think things went. How was your year, 2016?

Uh-huh.

Uh-huh.

Uh-huh.

Uh-huh.

Ok let me get all that down.

jarmoluk/Pixabay
Fuck. This. Guy.

Ok, so here’s what I think. Uhhhhhh……… it feels like you left some things out of your recap there. Now, I’ve been going over your situation specifically with HR, and they want me to do a bit of sandwich criticism technique with you.

That’s funny.

No, I get it. Sandwiches. Good one.

Ok, so we’ll start off with something good about your year. Everyone here was really impressed with …

-checks notes-

… with how you brought back Gilmore Girls.

Netflix
Well, not everyone.

It wasn’t great, no, but I think a lot of people still needed it. So well done, basically. Good, ok, so now let’s talk about some of the not-so-good things you did this year.

-checks notes-

Hooo boy. Ok. You killed way, way too many people this year. Alan Rickman, David Bowie, Carrie Fisher, Prince, Florence Henderson, Harper Lee, Muhammad Ali, Leonard Cohen, Gene Wilder, George Michael, Debbie Reynolds. Freaking Prince.

I know I said Prince twice.

Uh-huh.

Uh-huh.

Ok, I see your point. A lot of people die each year. And sure those were beloved celebrities, but that could just be a coincidence. And because of the rapid growth of the mass media and celebrity culture in the latter half of the twentieth century, we’ve got a lot of celebrities about to go “past due” in a way earlier eras never had to contend with.

annaj/Pixabay
So get these ready, 2017.

I think Prince may have been immortal though, so that’s at least a little suspicious. Ok.

-checks notes-

You shot that gorilla.

Uh-huh.

Uh-huh.

No, that’s fair. Animals die in zoos all the time, and it’s almost always under sad circumstances. This was a slightly odd case with Harambe, but it wasn’t completely out of the ordinary. The only thing that made it really exceptional was the bizarre reaction the internet had, with the tiresome memes and everything. You’re hardly responsible for that — we’re still blaming 1998 for all internet related fuckups.

Jacob Bøtter via Wikimedia Commons
Screw you, 1998.

So … yeah. Yeah. I’ll just cross this off. See? This is a useful tool for me as well.

What about all the shootings though? Shootings at night clubs. Police shootings. Snipers attacking police.

Uh-huh.

No, it’s not entirely a 2016 problem, I talked about this with 2015 as well …

Uh-huh.

Ok, I see. Yeah, there are mass shootings almost every year. And the issue of adversarial interactions between police and minorities has been boiling over for a long time now, we can’t blame that entirely on you. And in general, a madman with a gun is an American problem, maybe a human problem, not a 2016 problem.

No, I don’t envy 2017 her job either.

DanceERB/Pixabay
Every one of these will soon be replaced with a firearm.

Still, I think you see my point: a lot of long running trends got worse under your stewardship, 2016. You can’t be held responsible for their origination, but damn, nothing seemed to get better with you, did it?

The population of grizzly bears in Yellowstone Park is slowly recovering, you say?

Ok.

I’ll write it down, sure.

Wikimedia Commons
Of course these young bears will now be living in a world without Prince, so half marks at best.

Seems like kind of a small thing though, compared to, say, that maniac who drove a truck through crowds of people in Nice, or the Zika virus. Or how the terrible situation in Syria is now much, much worse.

-checks notes-

Hottest year on record.

Failed coup in Turkey.

That idiot swimmer in Brazil who lied about getting robbed by the police.

You killed the gorilla. No, I know I already said that. I decided it still pisses me off.

Britain just up and votes to leave the European Union, throwing itself and an entire continent into economic uncertainty.

The Cavaliers — the fucking Cleveland Cavalierswon an NBA Championship. You know how much we hate it when nice things happen to Cleveland around here, 2016.

Oh, and yeah, I saved the biggest for last. You knew it was coming. Donald Trump — Donald freaking Trump, the bright orange celebrity bankruptcy baby — won the Republican nomination. How fucked up was that? What were you thinking there?

What’s that? I don’t know what? You know my end of year is the shit, I haven’t set foot out of this office in weeks.

He won the what?

Are you clowning us, 2016? Are you clowning the great corporation of YearCorp?

Alexas_Fotos/Pixabay
You would be nothing without us!

Ok. Ok. Thanks for telling me that. Thank you for your honesty. That’s a plus in your column. A small minus will be the rising god damned tide of white nationalism, so, you know, balance.

-stares out the window for several seconds-

Uh-huh.

Uh-huh.

Ok, yes, yes, we have lived through worse years. There’s no Black Death, or devastating wars, or crippling famines. The boys, as of yet, are not back in town. But this isn’t a competition to see who can be the least worst year here, 2016. Think of the damage you’re doing to our brand. People might stop using years.

I’m serious, Chinese calendars are now reliable and very competitively priced. You might sink this whole operation, 2016.

Right. Sandwich criticism.

-deep breath-

You had a pretty good Game Of Thrones season. That was nice. Boy, that’s almost as good as having Prince around still.

Anyways …

A few things to work on, then. You’ll be getting a 0.5 percent increase on your paycheck, because that’s kind of the lowest I can go without getting approval from 1993, and honestly, I can’t even be fucking bothered. And, uh, next week, when 2017 shows up, we’re not going to get you to show her around. Don’t need her getting any bad habits. So that’s it.

Yeah, Happy New Years to you too.


Chris Bucholz is a Cracked columnist and is at least somewhat worried we’ll think back fondly on 2016. As the author of the amazing novels, Freeze/Thaw and Severance he thinks you should definitely go buy both of those now. Join him on Facebook or Twitter.

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