Dave Barry’s 2015 Year in Review
In sports news, Tom Brady won sports
In world news, historic number of climate change meetings are scheduled
OK, critics: We have heard you. This year, instead of dwelling on the negatives, we’re going to start our annual review with a List of the Top 10 Good Things That Happened in 2015. Ready? Here we go:
1. We didn’t hear that much about Honey Boo Boo.
Are we saying that 2015 was the worst year ever? Are we saying it was worse than, for example, 1347, the year when the bubonic plague killed a large part of humanity?
Yes, we are saying that. Because at least the remainder of humanity was not exposed to a solid week in which the news media focused intensively on the question of whether a leading candidate for president of the United States had, or had not, made an explicit reference to a prominent female TV journalist’s biological lady cycle.
That actually happened in 2015, and it was not the only bad thing.
This was the year when the “selfie” epidemic, which was already horrendous, somehow got even worse. Of the 105 billion photographs taken by Americans this year, 104.9 billion consist of a grinning face looming, blimplike, in the foreground, with a tiny image of something — the Grand Canyon, the pope, a 747 crashing — peeking out in the distance behind the person’s left ear.
This was the year of the “man bun.”
And if all that isn’t bad enough, this was the year they tricked us into thinking Glenn got killed on The Walking Dead.
(By the way: spoiler alert.)
At this point you are saying: “Wait a minute! Surely there were some positive developments in 2015! How about the fact that, after so many years of sneering judgmentalism and divisive, overheated rhetoric, we were able to have rational, open-minded conversations about such issues as gun ownership, gay marriage, race relations and abortion, so that, as a nation, we finally began to come together and ... Whoa! Sorry! Evidently I am high on narcotics.”
Yes, you are. And we intend to join you soon. But first we need to take one last look back at the hideous reality of 2015, which began, as so many ill-fated years have in the past, with ...
... which finds the Midwest gripped by unusually frigid weather, raising fears that the bitter cold could threaten the vast herd — estimated in the thousands — of Republican presidential hopefuls roaming around Iowa expressing a newly discovered passion for corn. As temperatures plummet, some candidates are forced to survive by setting fire to lower-ranking consultants.
For most Americans, however, the cold wave is not the pressing issue. The pressing issue — which will be debated for years to come — is how, exactly, did the New England Patriots’ footballs get deflated for the AFC championship game. The most fascinating theory is put forth by Patriot head coach Bill Belichick, a man who, at his happiest, looks like irate ferrets are gnawing their way out of his colon. He opines — these are actual quotes — that “atmospheric conditions” could be responsible, and also declares that “I’ve handled dozens of balls over the past week.” This will turn out to be the sports highlight of the year.
Bill Belichik, on what will turn out to be the sports highlight of the year
In Paris, 2 million people march in a solidarity rally following the horrific terrorist attack on the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. Eyebrows are raised when not a single top U.S. official attends, but several days later, Secretary of State John Kerry arrives in France with James Taylor, who — this really happened — performs the song You’ve Got a Friend. This bold action strikes fear into the hearts of terrorists, who realize that Secretary Kerry is fully capable, if necessary, of unleashing Barry Manilow.
Meanwhile in Washington, a drone crashes on the White House lawn and immediately becomes a leading contender for the Republican presidential nomination.
In sports, the first-ever NCAA Division I college football playoffs reach a surprising climax when the Oregon Ducks are defeated in the championship game 42-20 by the New England Patriots. Asked how this is possible, given that the Patriots play in the NFL, Coach Belichick opines that it could be a result of “global climate change.”
Speaking of surprises, in ...