‘Unus annus, memento mori’ can be translated from Latin to ‘one year, remember death.’
Unus Annus is a Youtube channel created on November 15th, 2019 by Ethan Nestor, also known as CrankGameplays, and Mark Fischbach, known as Markiplier. The premise was that these two creators would post a video daily for a year. Then on the one year anniversary of the first video being posted, the channel, and everything on it, would be deleted.
Mark and Ethan said they were doing this to emphasize the idea that death is coming, and people should embrace life experiences and make the most of their time in this mortal body.
In the first video on the channel, both creators said together, “We live our lives taking each second for granted, but what would you do if you knew how much time you had left?” They went on to say, “This channel, much like all of you, has a limited amount of time and everyday we march ever closer to this channel’s inevitable doom. Much like death, you can’t take it [the channel] with you, and all we’ll have is the memories that we make along the way.”
Taking a look at the channel and its videos, you might not see the point they are trying to make. I mean, what does a video about eating hotdogs have to do with our ever-looming mortality? More than meets the eye. All of the videos are Mark and Ethan doing and experiencing things they’ve never done before so that they later won’t regret never trying them.
That is such an important thing that I’ve learned from watching Mark and Ethan experience new things. It’s pushed me to do things I’ve been scared to do, like learning to set boundaries and stand up for myself. And the things you’re pushed to do don’t have to even be big, they can be something as small as buying that shirt you like that you’re afraid others will dislike. The idea of doing something so you won’t regret not doing it pushed me to advocate for me to start transitioning, that is doing hormone replacement therapy.
Unus Annus taught me how much can change in just a year: I came out as transgender! I started the process of becoming who I truly am. When I look back on who I was when the channel started, I realize how much I’ve learned. I’ve matured, I’ve aged, Iost friends and also gained some. I’ve learned a lot about myself and life in general.
Some may say that this is just a publicity stunt and that Mark and Ethan are not actually going to delete the channel because it makes them money. Ethan and Mark just aren’t those kinds of people. Watch any of their videos and you’ll see that they don’t do this for the money: they do it to help people and make them happy. They are genuine and kind men, and I couldn’t have asked for better role models.
At the end of the channel all I will have are the memories, laughing along with my friends, showing the videos to my parents and them just being very confused by my humor. The channel made me and a lot of others happy.
That's the biggest take-away. Do what makes you happy, even if that's watching two grown men being idiots and having fun.