2020 Lists

22 Dec 2020

We assumed this year was going to be a wash, but life found a way, and we were still blessed with momentous art and design. For the broader context behind these lists, I’ve highlighted them in my Instagram Stories Archives. Here, I’ve kept them dry and concise for the blog.

Top 10 Sneakers of the Year

10. Jordan V X Off-White
9. Nike SB X Travis Scott Dunks
8. Nike Space Hippies
7. adidas X IRAK
6. New Balance X Salehe Bembury
5. CROCS X Carrots
4. Asics X Kith
3. Puma X The Hundreds
2. Converse X Joe Freshgoods
1. Alibaba Customs

Top 10 Collaborations of the Year

10. Supreme X Oreo
9. Kith X BMW
8. Chinatown Market X Grateful Dead
7. Travis Scott X McDonald’s
6. “Everyone” X BLM
5. Anti Social Social Club X United States Postal Service
4. Dior X Kenny Scharf
3. The Hundreds X UNO
2. Verdy X Minions
1. Arc’teryx X Palace Skateboards

Top 10 TV Shows of the Year

10. The Morning Show (Apple TV+)
9. The Last Dance (ESPN / Netflix)
8. Cheer (Netflix)
7. Pen15 (Hulu)
6. The Trial of the Chicago 7 (Netflix)
5. The Social Dilemma (Netflix)
4. Lenox Hill (Netflix)
3. The Plot Against America (HBO MAX)
2. Itaewon Class (Netflix)
1. World Series / NBA Finals

*Disclaimers*

I am but a mortal man with so many hours in a day, and so I have YET to watch these shows, which I understand are great:

– The Boys
– I May Destroy You
– We Are Who We Are
– and I have a problem with watching anything called The Crown or The Queen, even Queen’s Gambit… (which, I did attempt for an episode, and gave up on. Because, you know, I could also be watching Pen15…)

TV – Honorable Mentions

– Away
– Tiger King
– All In: The Fight for Democracy
– I’ll Be Gone in the Dark
– How to With John Wilson
– Love on the Spectrum
– Borat 2
– Defending Jacob, which was a slightly better version of The Undoing
– and every episode of Forky Asks a Question on Disney+

Top Podcasts of the Year

10. The TED Interview : Elizabeth Gilbert
9. Radiolab : The WUBI Effect, Dispatches from 1918
8. The Daily
7. Business Wars : Pizza Hut vs. Domino’s
6. Making Sense w/ Sam Harris : The Worst Epidemic
5. Rabbit Hole
4. The Ezra Klein Show : The Most Important Book I’ve Read This Year
3. How’s Work? w/ Esther Perel, Where Shall We Begin? w/ Esther Perel
2. The Complex Sneakers Podcast
1. This Is Not a Podcast

Top Songs of the Year

Top Young Artists of the Year

This is an impossible distillation to make, so without overthinking it, I’m just throwing out names off-top. I’m intentionally not posting this on social media, so as to avoid offending any friends I may have left off the list. The reality is this should be at least a Top 500, and for the most part, it is challenging to make comparisons. I’m also excluding established artists that you already know I am infatuated with (e.g. Yoshitomo Nara, Futura 2000, Mike Giant, Raymond Pettibon, Robert Longo).

10. Cynthia Daignault
9. Greg Ito
8. Sharif Farrag
7. Mario Ayala
6. Sayre Gomez
5. Lauren Halsey
4. Christine Sun Kim
3. Anna Weyant
2. Chase Hall
1. Anna Park

Top Food I Ate This Year

Usually, this list is a cross-section of my international travels. I only climbed aboard one flight the entire year, with almost every non-homemade meal delivered to my doorstep or eaten off a truck near our workplace. So, that skews the category. Los Angeles-based, suited for delivery, and convenient. Again, I’m leaving this off of social media so as to not piss off very talented and deserving friends whom you may not see here.

10. Tire Shop
9. All Day Baby
8. El Ruso
7. Pepe’s Red Tacos
6. Wax Paper
5. Hortencia’s
4. Park’s 2 Go
3. Katsu Sando
2. Badmaash
1. Cholada

Top Books I Read This Year

I’m going to be honest. I didn’t fall in love with most of the books I read this year (for a selection, check out my book club: Death Sentences). When I reflect on it, I just never got into the mindset. Something about the constant hum of anxiety and unpredictability that 2020 brought. It was hard for me to escape into a book without constantly worrying about what was going on inside my phone.

Also, any free moment I unearthed, I dedicated it to writing, or thinking about writing, or planning on writing… And before I knew it, an entire year had sloughed off.

I hope this changes in 2021.

—X—