Ryan Benk

Sporting a smile that lights up the overcast sky, It's a Sin's Ritchie Tozer can barely contain his excitement. He and his father are on board a ferry, leaving their home on the Isle of Wight behind. Ritchie, played by Years & Years frontman Olly Alexander, isn't elated just because he's leaving for college.

"Oh my God, I think we found the Goonies treasure."

That's what David Whitcomb thought late last year when he discovered what appeared to be a secret attic of a building he'd just bought in Geneva, N.Y. There, he found century-old photographs and equipment — and a mystery.

Whitcomb, who had just purchased the historic building to expand his law practice, remembers that he had invited a friend over for a tour.

For more than 100 years "Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing" has been known as the Black national anthem. Rep. James Clyburn says it's time for it to be honored as the national hymn, and on Jan. 13, he filed a bill to try to make that official.

Clyburn told USA Today that making it a national hymn would help unite Americans.

It was an eventful year to say the least. It began with a historic impeachment, and then the global pandemic, a reckoning around racial injustice, a tumultuous election and even more unlikely news.

The Black Lives Matter movement became an international phenomenon in 2020. As protesters took to the streets in cities across the U.S. in the aftermath of the police killing of George Floyd, a Black man in Minneapolis, Minn., so did demonstrators in other countries — all with a similar message: Black lives matter.

"There is a George Floyd in every country," South Africa-based journalist Lynsey Chutel tells NPR's David Greene during a recent roundtable interview.

How much of your life did you live online this year?

Maybe it's your entire work life. Maybe much of your family time has been on Zoom. Perhaps you're even gearing up for a FaceTime Christmas or New Year's Eve. The question is, are these interactions any less real than if they were happening "in real life"?

Chris Stedman, author of the new book IRL: Finding Realness, Meaning, and Belonging in Our Digital Lives, started thinking about this before the pandemic began.