About By any measure, for most of us, this segment of time has been utterly rubbish, either because of world events and our reaction to them or something horrible which has happened closer to home. Now that we know for sure that the world is a divided, broken place, I decided that that this year's blog review should be a list of good things which happened in 2016. 216 of them. So people tweeted, Facebooked and emailed sentences. Something which has happened to them or something they've enjoyed. Something about a song, a film, a book, a meal, a friend. Or just something which they found positive about this unusually horrendous year. Dozens of people contributed and they're credited below. Everything else was chosen by me. Let's take the zero out of 2016 and find out what's left.
1. Liverpool schoolchildren donated warm scarves to rough sleepers to mark Valentine's Day. - @jadewright
2. The vote for the HMS Boaty McBoatface which then never was. I loved it. It captured for me the true spirit of asking the public and getting ridiculous answers. - @siobhanfarmer
3. Government launches consultation that paves the way for the GCSE-only rule to be dropped, and for Functional Skills to be reinstated as an equivalent qualification for Level 3 Early Years Practitioners. - @WastedElegance
4. Gary Lineker emerged as an unlikely champion in the fight against hate reporting.- @vauxhallwoman
5. President Obama awarding Ellen her Medal of Freedom was such a beautiful, feelgood moment that got me blubbing. - @shauna
6. The positive upswing in sales of 'Nasty Woman' t-shirts. Reclaiming the high ground one shoulder wiggle at a time. - @Rullsenberg
7. The US decided to put a woman (Harriet Tubman) on the $20 bill. - @katieUM
8. I got to vote for a woman for President of the United States for the first time in history. - @giagia
9. The Ice Bucket challenge, which had been dismissed by so many, actually made a real difference showing that good things happen and people can make them happen. - @joelidster
10. The pope visited the Mexican border near my hometown, bringing worldwide attention to the plight of immigrants. - @elpasoanne
11. London electing a Muslim mayor against the backdrop of a very islamaphobic campaign from his rival - @hannahkirkman
12. The Hillsborough Enquiry published and finally confirms the truth.
13. Night Service on the London Underground.
15. Colombia's government and Farc rebels agree new peace deal.
16. This comic strip.
17. Misogyny is bad for men's mental health.
18. The Guyliner's reviews of The Guardian's Blind Date columns.
19. Washington Post to add 60 newsroom jobs.
20. Norway man rescued after climbing into public toilet to retrieve his friend's phone.
21. Myanmar swore in its first elected civilian president in 50 years.
22. Lara Favaretto's Momentary Monument - The Stone at the Liverpool Biennial (which also raised money for charity).
23. The Superlambanana was repainted.
24. John Minton painting resurfaces after years spent in owner's shed.
25. National Museum of African American History and Culture opened in the US.
26. The Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square gave us a thumbs up.
27. The botched fresco restoration saved the town's economy.
29. The interactive Google Doodle celebrating Clara Rockmore's Thermin.
30. A computer painted a Rembrandt.
31. Stolen Picasso rescued.
32. The Women's Art Twitter Feed.
33. DC Comic's Rebirth. It's been like coming home.
34. The ferris wheel scene in Superman #7.
35. The issue of Doctor Who Magazine which was essentially just one giant, glorious Tom Baker interview. - @The_Arn
36. The Power of the Daleks. - @RobinBrown78
37. Lucie Miller is back.
38. Gareth and John visited Ianto's Shrine.
39. The Doctor Donna returned.
40. The Danny Dyer episode of Who Do You Think You Are was magical from start to finish. That man is a treasure, and his face should be on money.
41. Sir David in Planet Earth: seeing so many joyous tweets about faceplanting snow leopards and dancing bears. - @siobhanfarmer
42. Ed Balls on Strictly! - @wifeinspace
43. Ore and Joanne winning Strictly: He's a sports presenter. He didn't go to stage school. He cried almost every week. And it was pure joy. - @keris
44. Mel and Sue's tweet about not taking the dough. - @janinegibson
45. Top Gear being terrible (in a perverse way that's good for original TV). - @janinegibson
47. Box of Broadcasts. Still.
48. Stranger Things on Netflix. Seriously awesome. - @Rullsenberg
49. Netflix's The Crown, especially the final scene of the series where SPOILER SPOILER as SPOILER SPOILER. - @neilperryman
50. Season two of Making a Murderer was announced. - @froggielevog
51. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is always insightful, moving, feminist and funny, but in season two it kicked things up a notch. Episode four brought us not only one of the most realistic, no-nonsense abortions on TV, but also this cheeky little number from the depths of Rebecca’s subconscious. Naturally, it both reflects her insecurities about sex and references an iconic routine from Singin' In the Rain… - @dianeshipley
52. Tatiana Maslany finally won an Emmy for Orphan Black.
53. Gilmore Girls returns.
54. Will & Grace reunion.
55. Star Trek's 50th Anniversary.
56. Cold Feet returned.
57. Maisie Williams Pranked Game of Thrones Fans.
58. The Magicians is a TV adaptation of Lev Grossman's 'Harry Potter meets The Secret History' novel and a fine example of clever adaptation between media. The TV show preserves the spirit and tone of the original while changing loads of details in smart and practical ways, and through the first season has evolved a waspish pragmatic style of humour all of its own. - @markclapham
59. Deal or no Deal UK ends on a winner.
60. Leonardo Dicaprio won an Oscar. - @WastedElegance
61. The reconstructed majesty of Abel Gantz's Napoleon on the big screen - the grandest of grand follies. - @The_Arn
62. "I saw four professional women doing their thing with no "but you need a man" subplots: busting makes me feel good." - @magslhalliday
63. Kate McKinnon in Ghostbusters.
64. Carrie Fisher FINALLY confirmed she and Harrison Ford had an affair while making Star Wars. #HanleiaForever - @giagia
65. Bridget Jones had a baby. And it was hilarious. - @ClodaghMMurphy
66. Hello to Jason Isaacs.
67. Spider-Man’s cameo in Captain America: Civil War.
68. Deadpool's sex montage
69. Rogue One indicates Star Wars now owns Christmas film releases for years to come.
70. This documentary about a video shop closing.
71. The message of the film Arrival.
72. Kirk Douglas is a hundred.
73. And so is Olivia de Haviland.
74. Dublin's doughnut rising. Revolution Bakery, Aungier Danger, Rollin Donut, Off Beat Donut Co. The best imo is Dublin Doughnut Co but please do ALL your own field research. - @GreenClouds4
75. The humus salad I ate at the Humpit in the Corn Exchange in Leeds.
77. Fifteen new bowls of soup.
78. This photograph of the Bake Off's Ruby Tandoh worshipping a mince pie.
79. Marina O'Loughlin's review of Tasty.
80. The rise of political opprobrium and action (to follow) against terrible working conditons proving journalism still has a role. - @janinegibson
81. Teen Vogue.
82. Saw David Tennant performing as Richard II at the Barbican in London: complete with a hilarious accidental destruction of the stage by Jasper Britton when he stamped his foot a little too hard. - @Rullsenberg
83. Godspeed, anarchist librarian kid. - @lauraewaddell
84. Shakespeare First Folio discovered on Scottish island.
85. Russell T Davies's A Midsummer Night's Dream.
86. The To Be Or Not To Be Sketch at Shakespeare Live.
87. Theatre where Hamlet first performed given listed status.
88. Arden of Faversham added to Oxford's Complete Works of Shakespeare.
89. Jobama. - @keris
90. Guy dresses up as dog's favorite toy.
92. Fuck 2016.
93. Man stuck in compost bin!
94. The family who lives with a bear.
95. Frozen Pants.
96. How Many Girls Are in This Photo?
97. Subway post-it notes.
98. This crowd's reaction to a dude flipping a water bottle.
99. Well Dylan won the Nobel. - @LizzieWurtzel
100. David Bowie's Dark Star. It turned what could have been the utterly demoralising tragedy of a premature death into an incredible artistic supernova. - @TheDaiLlew
101. David Bowie's musical Lazarus played in New York then came to London, a cast recording album was issued - complete with three more Bowie recordings. - @brendanconnelly
102. The ongoing programme of Bowie reissues finally gave us all a copy of The Gouster. - @brendanconnelly
103. The video for Genghis Khan by Miike Snow. Kitschy delight in danceable form. - @redfacts
104. Brian Wilson toured endlessly with Pet Sounds. - @lucyswebdesigns
105. I was so lucky to see/hear both Stevie Wonder and Brian Wilson live in 2016, and both occasions were as amazing as I'd hoped. It's a truism, but music really does make things better. - @notesuponnotes
106. The Peaches gig courtesy of REVo who has been working up to this gig for years. - @nicolawass1
107. Suede touring their new album with accompanying film and a glorious greatest hits set. Euphorically nostalgic. - @discodave75
108. My favorite band, Wolf Parade, got back together, and I spent a week in New York City seeing them live, five nights in a row. - @tempestuous
109. Beyonce and the Dixie Chicks opening The Country Music Awards.
110. Kate McKinnon's Hallelujah.
111. The All Saints reformed and released a pretty good album.
112. This Sugababes track leaked.
113. OK Go's Upside Down and Inside Out video.
114. The occasional public humiliation of the self-important and talentless attention seeker Zac Goldsmith turns out to be 2016's silver lining. - @thejimsmith
115. The Obama administration in 2016 designated seven new national monuments and expanded an existing one; total land acreage protected in the US: 1.85 million acres and total square miles protected, if you include new ocean preserves, is 447,694. - @flowill
116. The cheery way Clare Malone says “Hey Jody” on the FiveThirtyEight podcast.
117. Last Week Tonight with John Oliver.
118. Samantha Bee meets Glen Beck.
119. The Obamas reading "Where The Wild Things Are" at Easter.
120. Mayor Bill De Blasio's promise to all New Yorkers (even though no one should have to make this speech).
121. Lindsay Lohan live tweeting during the Brexit coverage.
122. The Green Party's New Year Message: "Let's be honest, 2016 has been sh*t."
123. "Guys. It’s time for some game theory."
124. Chilcot finally published so that people can stop asking when Chilcot is going to be published.
125. The Rob & Helen storyline in The Archers had us gripped. The programme is an escape into a world that each listener has their own version of in their head, their own personal Ambridge. - @JonPeake
126. Radio Garden.
127. Steve Hewlitt's interviews on PM about his cancer treatment. Eddie Mair's sensitive and intelligent interviewing style.
128. Ross Sea became a marine reserve. - @RobinBrown78
129. Scientists are confident that the hole in the ozone layer above Antarctica is healing - it's now millions of sq km smaller than at the beginning of the 21st century. - @LizLockhart1985
130. Deep Learning made a computer beat the best human at Go. - @frabcus
131. SpaceX landed rockets which had put objects in orbit, paving the way to 10x cheaper space travel. - @frabcus
132. India's energy minister said new solar power is now cheaper to build than new coal power. - @frabcus
133. Europe's ExoMars enters Mars orbit.
134. Scientists improve photosynthesis.
135. Evidence suggests huge ninth planet exists past Pluto at solar system's edge.
136. The West Indian manatee is no longer endangered.
137. Eternal 5D data storage could record the history of humankind.
138. Second moon discovered around Earth. Ish.
139. Chernobyl exclusion zone to be turned into world's largest wind farm.
140. Iguana vs Snakes.
141. Tim Peake and every other astronaut has returned safely to Earth.
142. Giant pandas are no longer endangered.
143. Scientists have used groundbreaking technology to figure out how the Earth looked a billion years ago.
144. The success of the British team at the Rio Olympic games. - @matthewjrudd
145. The Paralympics. - @hannahkirkman
146. Andy Murray. - @davegorman
147. Nick Skelton Individual Team Gold in Show Jumping at the Rio Olympics. - @AlexiaPage
148. Mr Tonga in the Olympis opening ceremony. - @AlexiaPage
149. "Minority" sports appearing in prime time on BBC One during the Olympics and forcing schedule changes the likes of which we've never seen.
150. The celebration of the British Women's Hockey Team winning the Gold medal at the Olympics.
151. Usain Bolt's Olympic Triple Triple.
152. Alistair Brownlee helped his brother Jonny over finish line in dramatic World Series finale.
153. Wales reaching the semi-final of Euro 2016. It was like seeing John Sparkes appointed new Doctor Who. - @brokentv
154. 2016 is the year I discovered the amazingly talented writer, singer, actor, producer, Lin-Manuel Miranda of Hamilton fame. So happy he walks upon this earth. - @KTSavage
155. Hamilton won a ton of well deserved Tony Awards. - @katieUM
156. I got back together with the love of my life and he took me to new York for the first time. - @WastedElegance
157. Met Nichelle Nichols (who played Uhuru in original Star Trek) and told her she'd been an inspiration to women like me. - @vauxhallwoman
158. I studied all year for a professional qualification, and today got the job I wanted from it. - @TrapOne_
159. Being diagnosed with depression. Sounds like a downer, but actually, doing something about it and getting it treated after 20+ years has resulted in the last few months being the happiest I've had in a very long time. - @TheDaiLlew
160. My best friend of 27 years getting married. In a castle. - @TheDaiLlew
161. Cross legged by the side of my wife we sat on the sitting room floor of a friend’s home in front of the flames of a real fire. I gazed at her, and we looked round the room at a group of people who, in the space of what seems only a few months, have become close friends. And in the midst of all the unsettling moments of 2016 at that moment, during that weekend, I knew that I was blessed to have a circle of people whose company I enjoy, and with whom I felt secure. - @GeoffShadbold
162. I learned early this year that a series of satirical novels from the 1950s to early 1980s had been reprinted by the author’s family. And so I spent Christmas night chuckling while reading of the Duchy of Grand Fenwick declaring war on the United States as Leonard Wibberley’s mouse roared once again. - @GeoffShadbold
163. Saw one of Shakespeare's First Folios while it visited Duluth, Minnesota in October. - @tempestuous
164. Spent a week at the world's best summer camp, teaching songs I know by heart to one of my favorite kids. - @tempestuous
165. Black Walnut Creme in my coffee during a weekend with friends in a picture-perfect lakeside cabin. - @tempestuous
166. Introduced my nephew to the magic of Pee-wee Herman, by way of Pee-wee's Big Holiday. - @tempestuous
167. Skipped annual viewing of Love, Actually thanks to Stuart's timely reminders about its rubbishness. (Just kidding) (Not kidding about appreciating the reminder about the rubbishness!) - @tempestuous
168. I've acted in three different stage productions in London. - @suzynorman
169. I've had two poems accepted for publication. - @suzynorman
170. This year, Kevin and I conquered the foxtrot, at least to the point of being able to move around the dance floor without colliding with other dancers! We can also now do a passable tango and cha-cha, and are looking forward to adding more dances to our repertoire in 2017. - @suw
171. My tiny baby! - @speedina
172. Over the last 15 years my dad collected 1785 bowling balls and built this Pyramid with them. - @saywhatagain
173. I'm in Ohio and finally got to climb dad's bowling ball pyramid. - @saywhatagain
174. I've raised nearly £1800 for Cancer Research UK this year so far. - @Rullsenberg
175. My son turned 18 this year. For a trans* young person that's actually a big deal (suicide rates in trans* teens are horrifying). - @RosieBrent
176. My fan art for the Scandi detective show Trapped went viral in Iceland, which delighted me no end. - @redfacts
177. Creating 'Baker's End' with Simon Barnard and our fabulous cast and crew. We came up with it because we were a bit fed up at the end of last year, and we made something that we hoped would cheer up ourselves and everyone else. And we had bloody good fun making it. - @paulmagrs
178. The thinking digital conference - via Herb Kim who is always v generous re sharing tickets within the digital & creative sectors. - @nicolawass1
179. I found a pound in the washing machine. - @NevFountain
180. As property developers circle Crusader Mill, it’s been great to see the artists at Rogue Studios respond critically and creatively and forge overdue collaborations with neighbouring textile producers. - @Natalieviolet
181. I managed to successfully grow green beans from a seed this year. Only one plant survived the snails in my garden, but I got enough beans for a couple of meals. My grandparents grew all their own veg for many years, and that side of the family were market gardeners going back generations, but I’d never managed to grow anything before. - @lydiajo
182. Having self-published a children's book with one of my best friends, I'm delighted that the story has found a small but appreciative audience. - @LizLockhart1985
183. Discovering the NUS Extra card for alumni with all of its amazing discounts.
184. I got a book deal for a book with an autistic girl as the main character (to counterbalance the never ending number there are about boys). - @karamina
185. My baby niece Gracie beat a cancerous Wilms tumour and had one of her kidneys removed by the wonderful surgeons and Drs at Great Ormand St Hospital. She's just been given a full bill of health. Worth all of 2016 just for that. - @JoCoumbe
187. The lump is non-cancerous! - @firda
188. Did my dream road trip around the north coast of Scotland. - @firda
189. Got to revisit Reykjavik, Iceland, my happy place. - @firda
190. I bought a brand new car for the first time in my life. - @elpasoanne
191. feeling listless turned 15! - @elpasoanne
192. I grew tomatoes in my garden for the first time. - @elpasoanne
193. I went to code camp, and it was awesome. - @elpasoanne
194. This year's bright spots mostly private: Kid got engaged, family member 4 years cancer-free. - @brooligan
195. Having my first solo book published and my second commissioned. - @The_Arn
196. The wedding of two autistic friends; a joyful day of musical theatre and geeking out with friends old and new. - @the_arn
197. My small gesture of hope this year has been to give up smoking, in the face of so many reasons, both personal and global, to carry on. - Anon
198. My Mum's friend June phoned her. They haven't spoken in years.
199. I stopped biting my finger nails.
200. Accidentally stumbling upon New Broadcasting House during a Christmas shopping trip to London and being able to lean against the TARDIS whilst coincidentally wearing an Eighth Doctor t-shirt.
201. Being able to laugh as loudly as I did on Christmas Day with a large mystery present turned out to be a hat stand.
202. I created a TV show, Sonnigsburg, that finally premiered this week in Australia. And it's also on YouTube weekly. - @keithgow
203. My son called me 'Mummy' for the first time. That was nice. - @hayjane
204. I got a new job, lovely friends got married in November. - @AnneMarieT123
205. The Orbiting Human Circus Of The Air is a podcast that feels like Wes Anderson directing a loose remake of David Lynch's very odd sitcom On The Air, a super whimsical, melancholy series about a radio show broadcast from the Eiffel Tower that defies reason and geography. More compelling and less annoying than it has any right to be, and beautifully produced. - @markclapham
206. The long term plan that my husband and I made when we started dating came to fruition in 2016, and we get to move back to our favourite place in the world. -
207. I found my happy place - on the dance floor in the Euroclub at the Eurovision Song Contest. - @eurovisellie
208. A stranger asked for suggestions about good things that happened in 2016. Spent a memorable day at work with colleagues shouting out random positives ('Golden Eagle numbers are rising!', 'Nimrud not totally destroyed by ISIS!') - @vauxhallwoman
209. Golden Eagle numbers are rising! - @vauxhallwoman's colleagues
210. Nimrud not totally destroyed by ISIS! - @vauxhallwoman's colleagues
211. I discovered a week ago that Tumblr user helthehatter had a similar idea to this and also wants us to remember the good things which happened in 2016.
212. So did Reddit.
213. I gave birth to our baby daughter the day that Trump got in. What felt like the darkest day politically was illuminated by an overwhelming joy and hope. As my husband relayed the news to me in the delivery room, I didn't despair at the world I had brought her into, rather I felt that her purity and goodness could chase away the bad. - @toomanydresses
214. All those small reminders that the loudest voices don’t represent who we are and there’s still a lot of decency in the world. Like this one. - @hannahkirkman
215. Discovering that my friends are my family and the energy to fight for a better world because things have been so bad. - @Danoosha
216. I'm still alive and relatively healthy, for which I am genuinely thankful. - @lemurpatrol