The year 2021 was certainly jam-packed with various events from political memes and scandals, shortages and viral trends.

As we’re at the start of 2022 with a whole year ahead of us, let’s look back at some of the things that we should leave behind in 2022 - a kind of New Year’s wishlist if you like.

Covid... for obvious reasons

It goes without saying that in an ideal world the pandemic and its effects would not continue into 2022 but that’s just not realistic - especially given the different variants such as Delta and Omicron that have emerged.

In an optimistic world, we can hope for no lockdowns in 2022 so we’re keeping our fingers crossed.

‘Let’s Go Brandon’

Who knew a crowd chant from a NASCAR race event would become a viral political meme but that pretty much summed up 2021.

In October, a reporter mistakenly thought the crowd was chanting “Let’s Go Brandon” but in actual fact, they were saying “F**k Joe Biden.”

Since then Republicans have been using the meme to troll the president at any given opportunity- with one person even saying the chant directly to Biden during a Christmas phone call live stream.

Here’s wishing to leave the meme in 2021 and let it die.

The Milk Crate Challenge

The so-called “milk crate challenge” saw people going viral as they try to climb to the top of a loosely constructed plastic pyramid and then back down again without falling off.

Of course, the stunts have inevitably caused some pretty serious injuries as people fell to the hard ground from significant heights.

Luckily for us, TikTok was one step ahead and condemned the challenge and subsequently removed the hashtag from the platform and said in a statement this is because it does not allow content which “promotes or glorifies dangerous acts”.

“We remove videos and redirect searches to our Community Guidelines to discourage such content,” they added, stressing: “We encourage everyone to exercise caution in their behaviour whether online or off.”

Instead, anyone searching #milkcratechallenge will be greeted by the statement: “This phrase may be associated with behaviour or content that violates our guidelines. Promoting a safe and positive experience is TikTok’s top priority.”

So in theory that should be the end of it.

Ridiculous gender reveal parties

The year 2021 has certainly been an unforgettable 12 months in terms of extravagant gender reveal parties with many celebrations going viral for the wrong reasons.

In April, a reveal in New Hampshire caused an explosion that neighbours compared to an earthquake. Authorities said around 80lb of an explosive called Tannerite was the source of the explosion.

Another gender reveal in September led to an enormous wildfire in California after a smoke bomb was set off at a party celebrating soon-to-be-parents Refugio Manuel Jimenez Jr and Angela Renee Jimenez.

As a result, the El Dorado fire went on for two months (September 5, 2020 – November 16, 2020) and spread over 22,000 acres causing destruction of properties.

Sadly, one gender reveal ended in tragedy when two people were killed in a plane crash in Mexico back in March.

After these disastrous events, maybe expectant parents will calm down with their celebrations in 2022.

Petrol shortages

Safe to say we all agree that no one wants to be stuck in endless queues at the petrol station again or witnessing fights over the fuel pump and panic buying.

That’s exactly what happened in September this year when there was a lorry driver shortage, thanks to Brexit, with foreign drivers choosing to work elsewhere or the pandemic reducing the number of driving tests that had taken place in the last two years.

Although we want to leave this incident behind in 2022 there are bound to be other Brexit-related consequences on the horizon.

Nandos running out of chicken

It was a dark time for peri-peri chicken lovers up and down the UK when some Nandos restaurants were forced to close their stores due to a chicken shortage (A pretty essential item, considering the chain is centred around chicken...).

At the time, a spokesperson from Nandos told indy100: “Due to staff shortages, the UK food industry has been experiencing disruption across the supply chain and a number of our restaurants across England, Scotland and Wales have been impacted.”

“From today [August 18], Nando’s will be lending some of our brilliant team members to support key suppliers and get things moving again. We hope this will have a positive impact on affected restaurants, so please bear with us as we do everything we can to get that PERi-PERi chicken back where it belongs – on your plates.”

People tweeted their disappointment at the closures on Twitter.

Responding to upset customers on Twitter Nando’s described the situation as “a bit of a ‘mare’”.

Let’s hope a shortage like this doesn’t happen again in 2022.

And McDonald’s also running out of milkshakes

Speaking of shortages... McDonald’s also ran out of the ingredients to create their beloved milkshakes in August. such was the crisis and public upset, ITV News did a dramatic report to document the lack of shakes due to supply chain problems caused by the lorry driver shortages.

Meanwhile, 1,250 of its stores across England, Scotland and Wales also ran out of bottled drinks.

Needless to say, people were pretty upset that their favourite dessert drink was unavailable.

Again, hopefully, we don’t have a repeat of this next year...

Endless UK government scandals

In terms of UK government scandals, 2021 was a busy year.

It was revealed in June that former health secretary, Matt Hancock broke Covid restrictions back in April after he was caught having an affair with his aide Gina Coladangelo, an act which triggered his resignation on June 26.

Then we had the government causing more problems for themselves after claims emerged that there was an alleged Downing Street Christmas party on December 18th 202 as well as other claims of similar events around this time, while London was under a strict tier 3 lockdown which banned indoor gatherings.

We also had the sleaze scandal where it was revealed the former MP Owen Patterson repeatedly lobbied ministers and officials for two companies paying him more than £100,000 per year...

Perhaps in 2022, the government avoid upsetting the public - or at least try to have fewer than last year...

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