11 Ways To End 2015 On a Happy Note

Aretha, better than ever.

Well, the consensus appears to be in: New Year's Eve is the worst. If you're not drunk, crying, or fighting with a significant other around 1 a.m. while trying to find a cab in bare feet because you wore stupid shoes, you're taking care of a friend who's doing all three with gusto. It's enough to make a person want to stay home.

Actually, that's suggestion No. 1. While it is possible to go out and not spend your life savings and have a great time -- for options that cost $20 or under, step right this way -- it's also true that staying home, whether with a bottle of your favorite Scotch and your Netflix queue or with a carefully curated handful of your favorite humans, is a really good way to point your 2016 in the direction of positivity.

So is making donations to a good local organization, of course -- like, say, San Francisco's Women's Building. But we'll let you make your charitable donation choices on your own. You also know when and how you want to do yoga, call your mother, or any of the other high-minded activities that are sure to cleanse your soul in time for the new year.

Got that taken care of? Good. Here are 10 more things to see/read/hear/do that will kick your year off on the right note.

Let Aretha Franklin bring you to happy tears with this rendition of "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" at the Kennedy Center Honors.

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Head to Monterey from the comfort of your computer with the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Penguin Cam.

Take a cue from Carrie Fisher: Decide to give exactly zero f*cks about aging -- and feel free to tell the haters where to get off.

Watch Jerry Seinfeld pal around with President Obama on the EBiNu8Qglatest "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee." NBD.

Download the Trump Filter -- and never have to read his name on the Internet again. 

Plan a hot date -- with yourself. Here are eight local suggestions from our own Carly Severn.

Relive the Year of Riley Curry: Dancer, orator, game-changer.

Remember that 2016 will mark the return of Missy Elliott to the national stage. For some of us, this is a resurrection of biblical proportions.

Make something absolutely ridiculous for dessert. This here brownie-banana-split-pizza comes courtesy of (who else?) Paula Deen. New exercise regimen starts Jan. 2, right?

Spend some time with Lemmy. RIP, sir.

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Remember that time is maybe just an illusion, and the sun is going to explode some day anyway, so you might as well have fun. Oh, and remember to call your mother. See you next year!

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