Reality isn’t just defined by calendar dates. Unfortunately.

Matthew Wright

There was, I suppose, a universal sigh of relief when New Year 2017 ticked over and the world left the Year from Hell. We do like our arbitrary calendar dates.

Car: 1930. Building: 1932. Photo: 2012. Car: 1930. Building: 1932. Photo: 2012.

Reality, of course, seldom conforms to calendar dates. After all, Lemmy Kilmister kicked off the 2016 celebrity die-off just after Christmas 2015. A friend of mine suggested that this is when the Year from Hell really started. And it didn’t finish, by his reckoning, until January 20, 2017.

This disconnect between trend and calendar is a general truism for all history, of course, which largely flows around human-driven events and trends. They, too, don’t respect the arbitrary ways in which we divide our calendar, despite the way we popularly refer to a turning century as some kind of pivot. Popular histories, often, are divided up by century or decade.

Eric Hobsbawm – one of the best…

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