Twenty Twenty. The last page of the calendar will soon turn over into a new year. Into a leap year with 366 days. Between everyday existence and everyday dream, there lies hope, fulfilment, love, harmony and more sanity in the maddening world. Here’s a quick look at where to go, what to wear, what to eat, drink, and what to watch in 2020.
Visit: Travel, the wise men say, is about the journey and not the destination. True that. But picking a destination from 195 countries can be utterly tedious. Picking cities off the map can be dreary. But for 2020, these cities top the must-visit list: For the adventurous and outdoorsy, there’s Bariloche/Patagonia (Argentina), Kigali (Rwanda), Atacama Desert, (Chile); families can head to Cabo San Lucas/Los Cabos (Mexico), Vira Vira (Chile), Canary Islands (Spain); culture buffs choose Yerevan (Armenia’s ‘pink city’), Bahia (Brazil), Metz (France), Okinawa (Japan); foodies dig in in Mokpo (South Korea), Galway (Ireland), Philadelphia (USA), Tel Aviv (Israel). Wear: Puffy sleeves, polkas, pleats. The three Ps will rule the year. Trench coats in new avataar (not the boring straight-line beige trenches, please). Pull the denim up. Not necessarily as a pair of trousers but as a skirt: midi or mini. Bermuda shorts will suit the women and utility jumpsuits will make life/work easier. For a fancier look in 2020, pick a billowy dress; for ultra-feminine flamboyance, pick the bra top. Pantone has dubbed Classic Blue as the colour of 2020, but do not ignore the buttercup yellow, the prettiest pastel. Add red to browns. Wear different shades of white for tonal look. Mix checks with prints to make a bold statement. Eat: All things puffed and popped will make snacking lighter (and louder). Low-calorie and almost no-oil puffed snacks will be in everyone’s backpack. Carambola (star-fruit) will edge out kale and Brussels sprouts; squid ink will be turn a lot of dishes black; tajin seasoning will get noticed and collagen powders will be added to smoothies. Harissa (North African hot chili pepper paste) will be the new ‘sriracha’ and vending machines will up their game by spewing nuts, dried fruit, sealed sandwiches, and even fresh fruits! Do not get surprised if the pancakes get served with sweet potato syrup and jackfruit becomes the faux-meat staple. Drink: White Claw guzzlers raise another pint. It could be the year of hard seltzers. That is what Nielsen is predicting. And as an added spin-off, kombucha and coffee will be spiked. There will be demand for lower-octane spritzes and low-alcohol sherries, vermouths and sake options, Nielsen says. Wine might turn blue, gin pink, and cava ( a sparkling wine of Denominación de Origen status from Spain) will be in vogue. Also, remember the national drink days: Bloody Mary Day (January 1), Drink Wine Day (February 18), Gin & Tonic Day (April 9), World Whiskey Day (May 18), World Rum Day (July 11), Vodka Day (October 4), Sangria Day (December 20), Champagne Day (December 31). Watch: James Bond: No Time to Die (April 10), Wonder Woman 1984 (June 5), Mulan (March 27), Black Widow (May 1), Christopher Nolan’s Tenet (July 17), Godzilla vs Kong March 11 ), Top Gun Maverick (June 26), Fast & Furious 9 (May 22): 2020’s multiplexes will be bursting with blockbusters. Television will be Netflix & Chill with Messiah, Grace & Frankie, Bojack Horseman Season 6, Part 2, Narcos Season 2, The Umbrella Academy Season 2, among several others. The world 100 years ago
The League of Nations (later the United Nations) was founded in 1920. Jesse Langsdorf patented the all-weather and wrinkle-free necktie. Nikolai Tesla patented a one-way-valve with no moving parts. Sounds weird, but before 1920 children could be shipped by parcel in the US; the US Post Office banned the practice in 1920. Earle Dickson, a Johnson & Johnson employee, used tape and cotton gauze to make a bandage for his wife. That invention later became Band Aid. The word robot was used for the first time by Czech writer Karel Capek in his play R.U.R. (Rossum’s Universal Robots). The story is that Thomas Edison pranked The American Magazine (and its readers) by claiming that he had invented a phone that could contact the spirit world.