Every trip around the sun is a gift best unwrapped one global rotation at a time. It’s the mystery that makes life exciting, which is why prophets usually make predictions only about the future beyond their lifetimes – nobody likes a plot spoiler.
With this in mind, please take my prognostications for 2022 with a heaping spoon of salt and wash it down with a jigger of hope that this is all a bad dream.
PANDEMIC: Going out on a limb to say mask and vaccine mandates will not last much longer, probably removed within a decade or two. I don’t want to be more specific than that though. Remember the January 17 date for not needing a passport, as suggested by the Ontario government’s brain trust this fall? We all know they were desperately trying to be as optimistic as Alberta in August, but in hindsight, it appears to have back-fired like a Trumper at a baked-beans convention. All mandates, however, will be removed by May 15 in time for the provincial election in June. With an abundance of caution in mind, Premier Doug Ford has said unvaccinated constituents will be allowed to vote early in February. Just in case. Breaking with precedence, voting stations will be set up at both the LCBO and Shoppers Drug Mart with ballots priced to cover the administrative service.
EDUCATION: There are desperate times ahead for economics teachers as individuals young and old learn first-hand the core fundamentals of supply and demand. New jobs will be created, however, in other sectors. For example, with inflation pumping life into comatose interest rates, there will be brisk activity in the bankruptcy and credit collections sector. Post-secondary institutions will find they are in a strong position in 2022 after diplomas and degrees are mandated for YouTube podcasters.
HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENT: Clubs and organizations trading on the benefits of nutritional oversight and calorie maintenance will face a hefty carbon tax. Fighting to add the fee was the Canadian Taxpayers Federation and Fraser Institute, which argued that hot yoga sessions were raising global temperatures more than the ruminations of right-wing think tanks. They also cited studies carried out by multi-national interests in the private health care field that the focus on self-care will limit the need for hospitals, thus threatening stock predictions. A lawsuit is pending from Pfizer, which calculated lost revenue for COVID-19 vaccines alone would impact future space junkets.
MEDIA: There will be an increase in the numbers of non-profit news platforms in 2022 as mainstream outlets realize they’re so broke they qualify.
ENTERTAINMENT: The top-selling multi-media subscription next year will be a virtual reality game called Conspiracy Crackers. Players score points if they can convince anti-vax and mandate-resistant players to consider facts and reality-based theories. Bonus points will be awarded if you can get opponents to take their shoes off at the door and remove the ball cap at the dinner table.
WEATHER: It’s not going to be good.
SCIENCE: Research will be revealed next year that explains how data-driven theories can actually bend to fit political goals, depending on the temperature. Also to be presented in 2022 is the precise reason pharmaceutical corporations were protected from lawsuits stemming from products they say are well-tested, safe and astronomically profitable.
LOCAL POLITICS: North Bay will elect a new mayor who quits mid-term to take a job as a plumber for more pay and cleaner working conditions. There will be six new councillors elected in 2022. Also expected to be set in motion next year, Callander and East Ferris will amalgamate and annex the Cascades Casino.
You read it here first.
P.S. It was a very hard year and I couldn’t bear to review it. And there’s a distinct lack of certainty heading into 2020’s trilogy so all I could manage is a spoof trailer. There was some thought of writing about hope, perseverance, and appreciation for true friends but you’d see through that fakery in a flash. My only advice is to not take things too seriously – and be a smidge kinder than you were the day before.
Dave Dale is a veteran journalist and columnist who has covered the North Bay area for more than 30 years. Reader responses meant as Letters to the Editor can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. To contact the writer directly, email: email@example.com or check out his website www.smalltowntimes.ca