Ten things I wrote in 2015 that I love

(Photo courtesy of  jacinta lluch valero )

(Photo courtesy of jacinta lluch valero)

It's time to bid adieu to the year 2015. This is long overdue, really. 

It's overdue for many reasons, namely that humans still don't know how to protect the planet they live on; that Donald J. Trump somehow is more and more considered a serious and viable leader for the foremost global superpower with every new dumb statement that he makes, and not the idiotic caricature of a clown he really is; that policemen still can shoot and kill black men with no consequence; that guns still are divinities in too many people's mind; and that too many resort to violence all too easily.

But maybe there is hope? Maybe we've decided to take actual, concrete steps to protect the environment. Maybe Justin Trudeau will continue to give Canada the good name it lost in the previous decade. Maybe the rise of Trump, or Ted Cruz, or Marco Rubio or whoever else would finish first, will once and for all kill the GOP and force it to consider other means to govern and do without the racist, divisive and xenophobic rhetoric. Maybe. 

On a personal level, 2015 will be the year when I finally found a reliable and secure job and, most importantly, found love. (On Tinder, not a hopeless place.) Just like in any other year, I wrote a whole lot of words in 2015. Here are, in no particular order, my 10 favourite things I wrote.

1) Goat Bill 36 is fine, cleared for Army-Navy. Here is the would-have-been-sordid story of how Bill 36, the Navy mascot, overcame adversity and near-tragedy in advance of the latest Army-Navy game.

2) Montreal by night: Rafael Nadal is a damn rock star. Wherever he goes, the Spaniard is the story. Including at the Rogers Cup in Montreal. This is the story of what happens when a player and celebrity of Nadal's stature enters the same universe that you do. 

3) Entourage, the movie: Living larger than life, bro. The bros had had a full eight seasons in the fantasy where an entourage is a more important reality than an actual paycheck, but it was never going to be enough. E, Ari, Drama, Turtle, Vince... If the bros from Entourage taught fellow bros anything, it's that when someone gives you eight seasons of lemon, then you press them for lemonade and demand a movie. #CalvesDontLie

4) Weakest of the week: Tulane must beat UCF. This particular week of college football games was so weak that I illustrated its weakness with plenty of references to gardening and begonias. "Watering and location may be important to a begonia, but hey not every begonia can make it to the championship. The destiny of some is to wither and fade as October rolls around."

5) Is Nick Kyrgios the heel that tennis needs? In a sport that demands grace, humility and gentlemanliness from its players, past and present, the young, abrasive and confident Nick Kyrgios sticks out like a sore thumb. But so long as his attitude doesn't keep him from winning matches (not a given), is his cockiness a breath of fresh air?

6) Nadal and Djokovic: The rivalry that never stops. Novak Djokovic somehow beat Rafael Nadal at the French Open, yet didn't win Roland-Garros? That's insane. But still: before he lost against Stan Wawrinka in the final, the Serb beat the Spaniard rather easily. Here's how it happened. 

7) Quatrième lettre pour Marc Bergevin: Échanger Carey Price? Marc Bergevin est le directeur général du Canadien de Montréal; le Canadien de Montréal est l'équipe de hockey de ma ville natale; et, le hockey est ce à quoi cette ville carbure. Il m'arrive d'envoyer des missives à Marco. "Se tourner les pouces sans arrêt, c'est ben beau mais ça finit par te faire de l'eczéma, tu me comprends-tu?"

8) Been there, done that: The basketball journey of Kyle DesmaraisIn Canada, a student-athlete can't play Canadian Interuniversity Sport for more than five years... but sometimes, five years lasts longer than five years. Say hello to Montreal's own Kyle Desmarais.

9) Osheaga 2015: The makings of a good weekendOsheaga, without music, would be a caricature of every bad thing in this world. It would be like the world's biggest and saddest beach party, only without the beach. But thankfully, there's the music. It's that music that makes this weekend-long festival a must during Montreal's very busy festival season.

10) Grantland is overGrantland was the very best website on the Internet, or at the very least my favourite one. The site was never pure or classic journalism, but what site or media organization really is pure or classic journalism in 2015? Then, ESPN decided to shut it down, which made me incredibly sad and convinced me to write this ode to a site I used to love.