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Was 2016 the Worst Year Ever?


Protestors hold banners in Parliament Square during a 'March for Europe' demonstration against Britain's decision to leave the European Union, central London, Britain, July 2, 2016.

This is What’s Trending Today.

The year 2016 is soon coming to an end.

People on social media are looking back on the year. Many are saying 2016 was one of the worst years in recent memory.

Television personality John Oliver, for example, spent much of his final show of the year discussing how bad the last 12 months were.

He said, “Let’s face it: 2016 has been one calamity after another.”

President Obama went to view the flood damage and help residents in Baton Rouge.
President Obama went to view the flood damage and help residents in Baton Rouge.

He showed images of the Brexit campaign, migrants in Europe, protests in U.S. cities, flooding, lead-poisoned water in Flint, Michigan and more.

The producers of his show interviewed people on the streets of New York City.

One man said, “if we could erase 2016 off the calendar, it would be perfectly good with me.”

Another said “it was a pretty rotten year, I think most people would admit that.”

But on Monday, some people used the Twitter hashtag #UpsideOf2016 to discuss some of the good news during the last 12 months.

When someone discusses “upside,” it means something good or optimistic.

Some people responded to the prompt by saying the best thing about 2016 is that it is almost over.

But others said they celebrated graduations, engagements, weddings, births and other happy things.

One poster remembered that we got to experience one extra day because 2016 was a Leap Year.

Another celebrated her recovery from cancer.

The singer Chaka Khan reminded everyone that one #UpsideOf2016 is that “we’re still here,” and she wrote “live a #Superlife NOW. Tomorrow is not promised.”

And that’s What’s Trending Today.

I’m Dan Friedell.

Dan Friedell wrote this story for Learning English. Ashley Thompson was the editor.

What did you think of 2016? Let us know in the comments section.

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Words in This Story

calamity – n. an event that causes great harm and suffering

rotten – adj. very bad or unpleasant

engagementn. an agreement to be married

promptn. a message that appears on a computer screen asking the user to do something or to provide information

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