Remember back in January before the pandemic started when we were all full of hope and aspiration for a new year and a new decade that couldn't possibly be worse than the ones before them?
Boy, that all aged like a gallon of milk sitting in the summer sun, didn't it?
But perhaps nobody's early 2020 optimism was a bigger face-plant than comedian Robyn Schall. She's gone mega-viral in recent days after finding her deeply hilarious, profoundly tragic list of 2020 goals.
Schall posted a video to TikTok of her reading the December 2019 list and even she can't breathe from laughing so hard at the tragedy.
When your 2020 goal list is trolling you!! #goals #humor #breakdown https://t.co/eZ55zozpXK— Robyn Schall Comic (@Robyn Schall Comic) 1605297622.0
Schall—a New York-based stand-up comedian who like many in the arts has been locked up in her tiny studio apartment most of the year instead of out performing—came across the list while going through old comedy notebooks.
She told BuzzFeed News she began laughing as soon as she started reading because the goals list included basically every genre of pandemic-year tragedy.
As she put it in her video:
"Alright. Goal one: Make more money. I, you know, have been unemployed since March."
Schall then continued with three goals that were functionally impossible in 2020.
"Travel more. Lose weight. Be more social."
And it only got more hilariously sad from there.
"I wrote 'cry less'! I've cried every single day of this whole pandemic!"
Who among us‽‽
But nothing could compare to the final goal which she read while laughing so hard she could barely get the words out.
"It's not funny, but I wrote, 'Spend more time with my grandma,' and she died!"
Speaking with BuzzFeed, Schall explained what had her laughing so hard—through tears—about the list.
"Everything on the list is just so funny because it's everything taken away from us...
"The universe was like, No, we're not gonna give you travel or success. Oh, you want some time with your grandma? We're gonna knock out all old people!"
She called the list "comically heartbreaking," a sentiment that definitely resonated with others on the internet.
Her video has gone mega-viral on TikTok, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
this is the defining art of 2020 imo https://t.co/e0RNlt0GDw— Sarah James (@Sarah James) 1605578716.0
I've rarely seen something so simultaneously hilarious, heartbreaking, and relatable. 🤣💔😳 https://t.co/ohkm8ldIfl— Aman Chaudhary - Artist✌🏽🏳️🌈 (@Aman Chaudhary - Artist✌🏽🏳️🌈) 1605638819.0
This is 2020 PERFECTLY summarized https://t.co/5NDSbS63hx— Patton Oswalt (@Patton Oswalt) 1605632608.0
@RobynSchall I feel bad for laughing (truly sorry about your grandma ❤️) but I’ve watched this, like, 5 times and l… https://t.co/NNwu1u0E0S— Candice (@Candice) 1605662928.0
I absolutely love her. She speaks for us all. #wine https://t.co/ZX9CZlN7A2— Debora Robertson 🦀 (@Debora Robertson 🦀) 1605557934.0
Not sure if this is the funniest thing I've seen about the pandemic, the most heartbreaking, or both. https://t.co/0NHHsfreyL— Darren Jalland (@Darren Jalland) 1605523577.0
And the Oscar for Best Picture goes to...👇👇👇 https://t.co/dQA9jUfK3z— Clayton Davis (@Clayton Davis) 1605646150.0
@RobynSchall Just what the psychologist ordered! Thank you for reminding us that sometimes you’ve just got to laugh… https://t.co/E3e0zh0X7g— Inclusion Psychologists Limited (@Inclusion Psychologists Limited) 1605737585.0
@RobynSchall @nanglish I laughed so hard at this, and then I felt like a horrible person, and then I laughed again… https://t.co/Y9rxHVZCa9— Stephanie Heeg (@Stephanie Heeg) 1605667332.0
@RobynSchall Hey Robyn. Thanks for this. It made me laugh so loud, my 4 kids doing school at home came running to m… https://t.co/ar1nmTKtLR— Juan Solo (@Juan Solo) 1605556699.0
Perhaps best of all, Schall's video has given her horrible year a happy ending (or, at least, as happy as one can hope for in 2020). She's become internet pals with celebrities who've reached out to her in her DMs, been featured on talk shows and has boosted her social media profile—an important tool for comedians nowadays.
Of course, she'll have to wait until the pandemic is over to put all that to any use, which... well, only makes sense for this nightmare of a year.
Schall herself acknowledged:
"It's so 2020 that celebrities want to get a drink with me and we can't go out. I get my big break and I can't do anything!"
Well, there's always 2021... or 2022...