It is only proper that at the dawn of a new year we focus on the positive and uplifting potential of the 12 months to come, it's also important that we not overlook the negative.

Accordingly, here a few people, words, trends and other phenomena it would be good not to have to see in 2016.

• Kale.

• Talk of Paula Bennett being prime minister one day.

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• Even having to think about that possibility.

• Americans shooting each other for no reason or, worse, religious reasons.

• "Solutions" in business names, such as "Dentistry solutions" or "Web design solutions".

• Paleo anything, especially as a reason to charge twice what could possibly be justified for the item concerned.

• Mark Weldon's ideas on anything.

• Movies featuring Marvel comics characters repeating the same jokes, plot points and action sequences.

• Extortionate cinema ticket prices.

• Surveys telling me New Zealand is the best place on Earth to live.

• Links to kitten videos.

• Knighthoods.

• Rigged talent shows with scripted publicity stunts.

• Stories about the wonders/horrors of the Auckland real estate market.

• Continuing destruction of the little that remains of our built heritage.

• Plans to put monorails or motorways through national parks/reserves.

• Impact used as a verb.

• Briscoes "sales".

• Groundbreaking comedy.

• "Binge watching".

• Reference used as a verb.

• Interesting made-up names for children.

• Alternative spellings for traditional children's names - I'm looking at you Reaghwinn.

• Government measures aimed at making it easier for people to consume more alcohol.

• "Edgy".

• The mania for needlessly cutting down trees.

• Refusal to countenance the humane and decent policy of admitting more refugees than the paltry number we now accept.

• Continued erosion of workers' rights.

• Manipulation of statistics to make things look better than they really are.

• Most blogs.

• Manbuns.


• A flag debate that has been turned into a political battleground.

• Multimillionaire financier John Key's attempts to portray himself as a relatable man of the people.

• Serco.

• Royal visits.

• Stars Wars VII: The Force awakens star Carrie Fisher having to justify the fact that she looks her age.

• Entrepreneur Martin Shkreli, the price-gouging buyer of Aids medicine Daraprim.

• The Block.

• Competitive cooking shows.

• The never-ending US presidential election campaign.

• Justin Beiber when his mouth is open.

• Puffer jackets.

• Use of #hashtags anywhere but on twitter.

• Donald Trump.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. Photo / AP
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. Photo / AP

• The next 50 Shades of Grey movie.

• People - not only, but in particular, young males - killing themselves in numbers that are a national shame.

• Resistance to humane, sensible right-to-die legislation.

• Casinos portrayed as economy-saving powerhouses instead of shiny temples of greed.

• Auckland traffic.

• People complaining about Auckland traffic.

• Onesies.

• Brightly coloured soft drinks occupying roughly a third of display space in dairies.

• Anyone still refusing to acknowledge manmade climate change and the necessity to do something about it.

• The Prince of Wales.

• Attempts to "break the internet".

• Spoiler alerts.

• Google glass.

• The Apple watch.

The Apple Watch craze should be over by now. Photo / AP
The Apple Watch craze should be over by now. Photo / AP

• "Grazing" menus and "plates to share".

• "Artisan" anything.

• Sepp Blatter, Rolf Harris and Bill Cosby.

• Hoverboards.

• Weekly announcements of the discovery of a planet that's the closest yet to possibly being able to sustain life as we know it.

• McDonald's boutique-ing up its "menus".

• Local celebrity stories that aren't about anyone even slightly celebrated.

• Colouring books for alleged adults.

• Food writers who publish the same book every Christmas with a slightly different cover photo.

• Articles marvelling at the rise of online shopping.

• Speculation about the future of the printed book.

• Kardashians.