A few days after the WHO formally declared the COVID-19 pandemic in March, some friends and I began collecting memes about it in a public Facebook album.
Initially, I shared the memes just for laughs—like, look at this absurd, unprecedented situation we’ve ended up in, we’re being told to stay home!—but as lockdown dragged on and on and on, the memes became a source of comic relief and distraction, helped to reduce the pains of social distancing, and often said aloud what we were all thinking.
Over the months, the album unexpectedly grew into a time capsule of a year spent in a global pandemic. More than a thousand memes offer a range of thoughts and perspectives on the twists and turns of 2020, making it one of the most memerable years we’ve ever had.
Below I share with you the top 10 memes from each month, defined by the total number of likes, in addition to loves, hahas, and shares, which also suggests that the meme was more enjoyed rather than sympathized with. I curated them using a script that I wrote in Python.