雞同鴨講──送走2016年後，新一年該如何寒喧？｜A Chicken Talking To A Duck By Chatterbox
If you asked people what 2016 meant to them, I am almost certain many would say it was a terrible year and maybe even one of the worst in history, most likely because of the many significant and unpleasant events that took place around the globe over the course of that year.
Besides seeing a rise in terrorist attacks and many international cities suffering a dramatic rise in terrorism-related deaths, the world was also traumatised by Brexit and the shockwaves from the surprise US presidential election result which saw Donald Trump succeeding to become the next leader of the free world.
I think the most appropriate phrase to describe 2016 would be annus horribilis, which means ‘horrible year’ in Latin. The very first time I, or maybe even most people, heard of this phrase was in 1992 when Queen Elizabeth II used it in her speech to mark the 40th anniversary of her accession to the throne, from that point on the phrase immediately became world famous. I am pretty sure if we had online platforms like Facebook or Twitter those days, it would definitely have been a top trending item.
No doubt last year was a scary year for many people around the world, so you probably have heard people say “it was a dreadful year”. Other adjectives that come in handy to describe it include horrific, horrendous, frightful, appalling, grim, ghastly, vile, nightmarish, spine-chilling, exhausting and depressing.
Okay, enough of the grim stuff, because I am sure there are still many good memories from last year, so let’s look at some of the more positive ways to describe the year.
To start, have you heard the saying ‘it was the best of times, it was the worst of times’? It was famously coined in Charles Dicken’s novel, A Tale of Two Cities. How about, ‘It’s pretty amazing!’; ‘the best is yet to come’; ‘Best year ever and it’s getting better’; ‘what a fantastic year’ or ‘it was a rollercoaster ride” to describe a mix of good and bad, eventful and unexpected experiences.
Aren’t we all sick of 2016? No matter though, as 2016 is history now and we can all say ‘good riddance to a bad year’, which is a way of saying goodbye to bad things and bad people. It’s time to say ‘best of luck and have a fantastic year’.
A few more cheerful phrases to kick off the year before we go. ‘Don’t worry, be happy’; ‘eat, drink and be merry’; ‘dancing on air’; ‘music to my ears’; ‘on top of the world’; ‘walking on sunshine’ and ‘this is the life’.
Enjoy and see you all next week.
我認為形容2016年的最佳描述是「annus horribilis」，亦即拉丁文中的「可怕的一年」。相信連我在內的大部分人，首次認識這句話都是在1992年，亦即英女王登基40周年，她發表演講時，就用到這句話了。從那時開始，它在全世界瘋傳起來。我敢肯定，如果那年有Facebook、Twitter等社交平台，「annus horribilis」絕對會成為頂級潮語。
毫無疑問，去年對許多人來說，用恐怖來形容也不為過，因此你也可能聽人說過「It was a dreadful year」。其他意思類近的形容詞還有「horrific」、「horrendous」、「frightful」、「appalling」、「grim」、「ghastly」、「vile」、「nightmarish」、「spine-chilling」、「exhausting」和「depressing」。
首先，你聽過「It was the best of times, it was the worst of times」（這是最好的時代，也是最壞的時代）嗎？這句話源自名作家狄更斯的小說《雙城記》。還有「It’s pretty amazing!」、「The best is yet to come」、「Best year ever and it’s getting better」、「What a fantastic year」和「It was a rollercoaster ride」，也可形容年中好壞參半，卻也發生了多姿多彩、意想不到的經歷。
大家是否都厭倦了2016年？無論如何，2016已成歷史，我們不妨說句「Good riddance to a bad year」，向壞事、壞人道別，「Best of luck and have a fantastic year」也是句適合的說話。
擱筆之前，再向大家介紹幾句令人愉快的短語吧，包括「Don’t worry, be happy」、「Eat, drink and be merry」、「Dancing on air」、「Music to my ears」、「On top of the world」、「Walking on sunshine」和「This is the life」。