What are We Leaving Behind in 2019?


Photo by Hannah Perri and Harper McNamara

Take a moment to reflect on the past year. What are we leaving behind?

Harper McNamara, Staff Writer

Now that we’ve reached 2020, we can begin to consider the answer to the age-old question: what are we leaving behind this year? 

As time goes on, it’s easy to observe the annual end of trends as a cultural norm. In years past, society has outgrown various trivia apps, eating fads, memes, and television shows. But until we progress further through the year, it will be up for heavy debate what we leave behind. And the discourse doesn’t end at the doors to Grand Ledge High School.

“We probably won’t see Hydro Flasks this year,” predicts junior, Eric Robert Moyer.  Hydro Flask water bottles have seen a massive rise in popularity despite being around since 2009. They’re often associated with the popular social media app VSCO.

“I think that we’ll stop seeing vaping as a trend,” says Jose Grace, a junior. “At the beginning of the year I could walk into any bathroom and chances are there would be a circle of people vaping. You just don’t see that as much anymore.” 

Grace’s theory is arguably legitimate. After a surge in teen vaping to as high as 25% in 12th graders last year, it’s entirely possible that these levels may drop down to something more reasonable with the dissipation of vaping as a trend.

“I think it’s possible that we’ll finally see the end of the glorification of right-wing memes,” junior Jasper Nolan said. 

This year we have seen a rise in popularity of the right wing meme culture. Starting with the perversion of the Pepe meme, right wing meme culture has grown to claim more relevant memes such as Clown World. In the opinion of some professors, there is reason for concern surrounding right wing dog whistles in memes.  In fact, in July the President invited his favorite right-wing meme producer to the White House.

“I hope that we leave Tik Tok,” says senior, Karlie Carter. After a rise and fall in popularity in 2017 and 2018, Tik Tok reemerged this year as one of the most popular social media apps on the scene.  “I’m getting really sick of it,” Carter said.

It’s obvious that there is a lot of contention around the subject of what we’re outgrowing this year. It may be vaping, right wing memes, Tik Tok, or a combination of them all. But in spite of the dialogue at the high school, we can’t be sure what we’re leaving in 2019 until it’s already gone.