Why New Year’s Eve Should Be Canceled

J Free

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There are worse things than spending New Year’s Eve at home.

If you ask me, New Year's Eve is majorly overrated. I've always found the event less spectacular than society makes it out to be. And while there's usually nothing wrong with it (I, too, always end up celebrating in one way or another), people are still dead set on making big plans this year. Many are willing to break government-mandated lockdown rules so they can gather in large groups for a fun last night of 2020.

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We all want to say goodbye to one of the toughest years most of us have lived through to date. We all want to welcome a new year that's hopefully much happier and brighter for everyone. But the way we celebrate the turn of the year could have an effect on how 2021 starts for a lot of people, whether we catch wind of it or not. Just like with other holidays this year, we have a choice to realize we're part of the problem, or simply look the other way.

I don't think I need to lecture you about following official guidelines and lockdown rules (I've done enough of that). But if just a few people decide to stay in, surrounded by a small circle this year, I'm convinced it will make a big difference in the long run. If you already have quiet, intimate celebrations planned, thank you for being considerate. If not, maybe you'll reconsider celebrating the end of the year with your 15 closest friends tomorrow. Come on, surely it can wait until December 2021 (well, hopefully).

That being said, here are all of the reasons why New Year's Eve isn't worth the hype in general, and why it should definitely be canceled this year:

It's Unreasonably Expensive and Overly Crowded

In regular, non-pandemic times, people buy hellishly expensive tickets for (normally cheaper) shows, elaborate New Year's Eve parties and dinners. Essentially, they pay a lot more money than they normally would for an experience, just because it's a "special occasion".

Why go clubbing and pay double the price for almost everything, when you can do that on any other given night?

Why fly to Paris on New Year's Eve of all days, when you could have a much more rewarding (and affordable) trip a few weeks later?

Not that any of that really matters this year, since public events are a no-no and travel restrictions keep us from jetting overseas. At least it will save a lot of people money that's better spent in other ways.

The Pressure Is Just Too Much

Why do we always feel the need to do something *extra special* on New Year's Eve? Why do we feel pressured to have a *special someone* to spend it with (don't forget that New Year's kiss!)?

We try to find the best, most exciting ways to spend the evening, because—god forbid—we don't have solid plans. The year absolutely needs to end with a bang (no pun intended).

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I've spent New Year's Eve in New York City numerous times (but obviously not at Times Square, yikes). I've said "Happy New Year" at big events and public firework shows in Europe. Those were all fun nights. But to be completely honest, the aggressive crowds, unreasonable prices, and the pressure and stressful planning surrounding the evening was never really worth the trouble. I've had more memorable nights.

My most relaxed, fun, and enjoyable NYE nights have been the ones spent at home with family and friends, just enjoying each other's company.

It's Really Just Another Night

When it comes down to it, New Year's Eve is really just another night. We all love an excuse to celebrate, to get together with friends, to have fun and a drink or two. An opportunity to dress up and open that fancy bottle of champagne. So do I.

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But again, the obsession and pressure surrounding this particular night makes me roll my eyes.

Cue: *someone, sometime in early October*:

"What, you don't have any plans for New Year's Eve yet?! You better figure that out soon, or everything will be fully booked. You don't want to risk spending NYE at home. That would be so depressing."

See what I'm saying? Calm down, friends.

Lastly, Celebrating in Large Groups Will Undoubtedly Make This Already out-of-Control Pandemic so Much Worse

Since our options are limited this New Year's Eve, it forces people to throw big, private parties at home to compensate for their lack of plans.

We all know what happened after Thanksgiving. The consequences of Christmas are just now starting to show.

At this point in time, we're so much closer to fighting this monster sometime in the foreseeable future. There's a glimmer of hope, and people are sick of playing by the rules. But make no mistake: vaccine in sight or not, we're still in the eye of the proverbial pandemic storm. You might think "oh, it's just one night", and "I'm not even at risk of getting severely sick anyway". But hospitals are already full to the brim, and this "one night" will make things even worse. Perhaps worse than you can contemplate. By going all out and celebrating now, you'll only increase the chances of a difficult first few months of 2021. Of even stricter rules and restrictions.

Listen, I'm only being half serious about canceling NYE for good (forever, that is). I don't want to be a party pooper. But this year, I'll gladly be that person if it might save someone's life. All I'm trying to say here is: New Year's Eve really isn't worth the risks and repercussions.

Considering all of the hurt and pain experienced worldwide this year, those of us who get to celebrate the beginning of 2021 with joy and happy spirits are a rare breed. If you can say that about yourself, you're truly lucky.

So, please reconsider your gatherings and end-of-the-year parties. There are worse things than spending New Year’s Eve at home. You don't even have to be alone if you can safely gather with those in your "bubble" and make it a nice, low-key evening. I promise you, it won't be so bad.

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