Regardless of whether or not they are even vaguely qualified to do so, talking heads and self-described experts alike fall over themselves to spell out what they think will happen in the following 12 months.
Sometimes they get it spot on and then crow about their God-given talent for prescience, although nine times out of 10 their powers of punditry are up there with the bloke who gets a tattoo with the badge of the club he supports and the legend ‘Champions’, a good two months before the football season ends. Almost always it ends badly with the tale of their buffoonery ending up in the pages of a newspaper such as this one.
Don’t worry, I am not building up to my big reveal as a Poundland version of Nostradamus as my track record in that department is risible to say the very least - I once boldly proclaimed on regional radio that the then newly elected Mayor of London, a one Boris Johnson, would never become Prime Minister as he wasn’t serious enough to hold such high office. I was half right I suppose.
I have also been in the room when truly daft predictions were made, including corkers such as ‘this Interweb thing will never catch on’.
Quite frankly, after the year we’ve just had, making predictions of any kind is particularly foolish, unless it is that millions of us will be eating turkey and cheese with cranberries in until Valentine’s Day.
The aforementioned Mr Johnson has done his best to peer into his crystal ball with perhaps his most memorable prophecy being that we could return to normal by Christmas.
If you really are hellbent on making a 2021 forecast then you won’t go far wrong with telling anyone who will listen that both coronavirus and Brexit will dominate the headlines for most of the year.
It would also be a fair shout to forecast that there will be lots of ‘we told you so’ from angry people on both side of the great Brexit debate with neither side coming close to conceding that they were wrong.
Neither should we be surprised to hear news items featuring greengrocers claiming they cannot easily get their hands on Sevilles and golden delicious while ruddy-cheeked men in bad ties dismiss it as yet another scare story from Project Fear. Brexit will be an argument that nobody will ever win unanimously.
The same can be said for coronavirus - I think I can safely predict that in the coming months Facebook will be full of defiant posts from armchair sages justifying why they won’t be taking the vaccine, even though their only experience in the field of medicine is watching daytime repeats of Quincy in the 90s.
On a personal note I will happily predict that it will be a long time until I ever manage to squeeze into the rather sharp suit Mrs Tapp bought me in the post-Christmas sales 12 months ago. My excuse being that there isn’t much call for a suit these days.
When it comes down to it, professional know-it-alls won’t take a blind bit of notice about what I have to say and will continue to make their 2021 predictions in the coming days.
One thing for certain is that they will most certainly be wrong as next year promises to be eventful as the one we have just endured.