We’ve reached the end of the year. I know, I didn’t think we’d make it, either. We found new reasons every day to get mad at each other online. We dumped ice water over our heads so we didn’t have to donate to charity, and felt good about it. We allowed Taylor Swift back into our lives. We voted out a bunch of Democrats because of Ebola. We watched Vladimir Putin close the Winter Olympics with the ceremonial invasion of Ukraine. In a year this dismal, one can feel lost. When I start feeling that way, I just ask myself, “What would Ernest Hemingway do?” Then I get rip-roaring drunk and forget the question. So pour yourself a glass and let’s do this.
At least she was clothed
Lena Dunham (of course we’re starting with her) was on the cover of Vogue magazine in January, and not in an ironic way. It got all the lady bloggers of all the internets upset, too, because her picture was clearly touched up. The Girls creator has touted herself as an example of what real people look like, and the photo betrayed all that, they said. In other news, Dunham was given an award for best magazine cover ever.
Let your bowels take a vacation
It was not a good month to be on a boat. First, a Royal Caribbean cruise ship had to cut its tour short because some 700 crew and passengers got sick. Then, a Princess cruise ship had a similar outbreak. We’re not talking about a head cold going around on the ship–it was the norovirus. A sizable amount of people were enjoying their vacations either in their cabin bathrooms without ventilation, or heaving over the side. They say bad things come in threes, but sadly the Bud Light cruise ship at the Super Bowl wasn’t affected.
In case you’re not sick of him already
Justin Bieber was arrested after police said he was drag racing in Miami while drunk and high, which is probably how everyone else in Miami drives in the first place. Bieber reportedly cried when he got arrested, and compared himself to Michael Jackson after posting bail. Between him and Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, it’s nice to see that Canadians can be just as big asses as Americans.
The military is now more accepting than the NFL
Missouri defensive end Michael Sam came out. (Side note, does anyone one say “came out of the closet” anymore? Did we stop doing that?) He told the New York Times that he’s gay, and unsurprisingly, the NFL all of sudden lost interest in drafting him. They said he would be a distraction in the locker room, as they do any time anything happens off the field, like every player on every team has ADHD or something. Rapists, abusers, drunk drivers, dopers and murderers aren’t distractions, but being gay is. They must think he’s going to wear shiny things on his clothes.
Chatroulette’s legacy lives on
It was revealed that the NSA and its British counterpart were collecting and storing images from Yahoo video chats around the world. Millions of users were apparently captured in mid-conversation. Apparently, not all of them were having typical, “How’s it going?” conversations. Roughly 10% of the images captured are of people doing things of a sexier nature via video chat. Does that number sound a bit low to anyone else?
Salvadoran national Jose Alvarenga was discovered in the Marshall Islands after being adrift in the Pacific Ocean for 13 months. He ate fish and shark meat, and drank turtle blood. Friends have verified his story, and confirmed that he was once a trained guerrilla in El Salvador who was laying low after angering a drug cartel. Alvarenga said looked forward to getting back to doing ads for Dos Equis.
Internet stops making jokes, being racist, to point out racist joke
The Colbert Report did a send-up of the newly-formed Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation. On his show, Stephen Colbert announced he was forming the “Ching-Chong Ding-Dong Foundation for Sensitivity to Orientals or Whatever.” The show’s Twitter account then sent out a corresponding tweet, and Twitter called it racist. Then other people said it’s satire, not racism. How many breaks can Dan Snyder get?
Ug, those two again
Actress Gweneth Paltrow and Coldplay frontman Chris Martin announced that after being married for a decade that they are “consciously uncoupled.” It’s not clear why they didn’t use English in their announcement, but it makes me now wonder what constitutes an unconscious uncoupling would entail.
This is my son, Bushmaster
No one names their kids anything normal anymore, but things are getting worse. According to a analysis of baby names released in March, there’s a new trend of people naming their offspring after firearms. No, really. Barrett, Beretta, Browning, Cannon, Colt, Gauge, Gunner, Kimber, Magnum, Remington, Ruger, Savage, Shooter, Trigger and Wesson are all name trends. These parents probably name their guns “Steve.”
The NBA banned Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life after recordings surfaced of him making racist comments involving black players and his girlfriend taking pictures with Magic Johnson. A picture of Sterling in his underwear was also released, and it came out that he was diagnosed with cancer. You had a better April than Sterling did.
This controversy brought to you by Samsung
One of the worst things about the age of camera phones is the selfie. People hate it when you post them (unless there’s cleavage), it’s a scientific fact. So it makes sense that Samsung used the selfie as part of its marketing campaign. When your world champion Boston Red Sox visited the White House, slugger David Ortiz took a selfie with President Barack Obama. Naturally, it was a stunt by Samsung, allowing people outside of New England yet another reason to hate the Red Sox.
Remember floppy disks?
In the early 1980s, Andy Warhol took to computers to create new works of art. He then saved them on floppy disks and did nothing with them. Then he died. Those images were left to sit on the disks for decades, until they were recovered by experts and put on display. They included a brightly patterned self portrait, a Venus with three eyes, and a Campbell’s soup can. Wait, didn’t he already do one of those? Sounds like someone ran out of ideas.
Worst spring break ever
Kevin Spacey traveled to Mexico to meet with President Pena Nieto. The two ran into each other at a resort in Cancun during Tianguis Turistico, an international tourism conference. It was alleged that the Spacey was paid by the Mexican government to make the appearance, which caused outrage among many Mexicans. However, the most outraged was Nieto himself, when he later learned that Spacey is not the president of the U.S.
Germany lost its mind for soccer
If you’re reading this, there’s a solid chance you’re an American, and thus, aren’t really familiar with the World Cup traditions. Apparently, national teams usually have a slogan and ad campaign going into the tourney to get their home country fired up. (The U.S. team’s slogan: “Thanks For Letting Us Play in a Game, You Guys.”) This year, Germany’s was about each player giving his heart for “the cause,” which never sounds good coming from Germans. Adidas’ campaign for Germany features players holding out hearts–actual cow hearts–as an offering. And then those bastards went on to win it all.
Vacationing with Vlad
Russian President and part-time beefcake Vladimir Putin traveled to Crimea, his first trip there since Russia annexed it. There were parades for a Russian holiday, with a backdrop of clashes between factions that left many injured and a few killed, and local leadership planning a referendum on autonomy. After landing, Putin said, “We annexed this? It looks and sounds like New Jersey!”
Great, now all three branches are involved
House Speaker John Boehner made headlines when he announced plans to sue President Barack Obama for overstepping the bounds of executive power. Boehner, who in no way looks like Robert Wagner, insisted that the move wasn’t simply an election-year stunt, and said that should the lawsuit fail, he will file it again another 50 times.
We’ve all been fight-a-homeless-guy drunk
Actor Shia LaBeouf drunkenly disturbed a performance of a performance of “Cabaret” by spitting into the air and generally being a jerk, according to witnesses. He tussled with a security guard who escorting him out after LaBeouf fell down on his own. Outside, he apparently fought with a homeless man before getting arrested. Man, viral marketing for the new Transformers movie has stepped it up.
It’s enough to drive you to drink
The Distilled Spirits Council announced that there was a national whiskey shortage. According to the council, whiskey consumption has grown in the U.S., and distilleries were having trouble keeping up with demand. The one thing you can’t buy online, and we nearly killed it.
Has anyone seen my vial of smallpox?
If you work at the Food and Drug Administration, you probably feel like you can walk around your office as free and clear from illnesses as any workplace in the world–until this year. It was announced in July that during the transfer of lab equipment to another facility, workers found vials of smallpox sitting in an unused storage closet. The vials date back to the 1950s, which means they were sitting there for the better part of a century. Still think you don’t need to get your grown child vaccinated?
Marching band has an O-H face
Jonathan Waters was the band leader of the (The) Ohio State marching band until he got booted for “highly sexualized” environment and hazing. According to reports, the band had sexual nicknames for most of its members, for example, “Jewoobs” and “Tits Magee.” They also had midnight band marches in their underwear. Why didn’t that iPad commercial have any of that in it?
Central Intelligence Agency Director John Brennan apologized to senators during a hearing for hacking into lawmakers’ computers to monitor and remove files on their investigation into CIA’s torturing of terrorists. He said he was sorry and embarrassed that the hackers had gone that far, adding, “But it’s still cool if we do that to ordinary Americans every day, right?”
The world waits because of a toddler
President Barack Obama was set to announce to the U.S. and the world why he had ordered airstrikes on ISIS positions in Iraq, and how it totally wasn’t going to be another war, but his speech was put on hold Thursday night. Outside the White House, a toddler squeezed himself through the bars of the fence on the North Lawn and started running around. Secret Service officers secured the kid, but the White House was put on lockdown during the incident. It’s safe to assume that the boy and his family are now in Guantanamo Bay.
The Don’t Shoot Me State
The St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Missouri has seen countless protests–not all of them peaceful–after an unarmed black teenager was shot and killed by a white police officer. The Ferguson Police Department responded to the protests by suiting up in camouflage and body armor, rolling around town in armored vans and brandishing automatic rifles, which some saw as excessive for any police force to have in the first place. Ferguson Police Thomas Jackson denied his department was militarized, and took off in his F/A-18 fighter jet before the press could ask any other questions.
The internet was rocked when it was announced that Hello Kitty is not, in fact, a cat. A spokesman from Sanrio, the company that owns Hello Kitty, said that the beloved character is actually a little girl, rather than a cat. She even has a pet cat. Nothing makes sense anymore. Up is down, left is right, dogs and girls are living together.
Celebrity skin not celebrated
Nude photos of dozens of female celebrities were posted on a forum online in September, supposedly from hacked Apple iCloud accounts. The media and many of your friends on social media were outraged that such a thing could happen, because celebrities shouldn’t have to deal with the same problems as normals. The FBI announced that it would investigate the alleged crimes, because only the feds are allowed to violate citizens’ privacy. We can only hope that the victims and their families are OK, and that they don’t decide to have their own reality shows.
Freed–err, status quo!
After months of campaigning and arguing, Scottish citizens voted not to break away from the U.K. Critics said Scottish independence would have sent Europe’s economy into even more chaos, and probably make life a lot more complicated for everyone. Besides, it would have made any new James Bond movies that much less realistic.
Virginia is for bribers
Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife were found guilty in September of several counts of corruption while he was in office. Among other things, they were accused of accepting gifts in exchange for favors and sweetheart deals. They were given hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash, gifts and trips while they were in office. It’s the first time a Virginia governor has been convicted of a crime. Virginia, you’ve got a long way to go before you have as many convictions under your belt as Illinois or Louisiana.
Sorry, bloody sorry
Bono apologized to the world for pushing U2’s newest album in the faces of every iTunes user ever. The frontman said that the band didn’t mean any harm to the people who complained about getting something for free, they just wanted to make a big entrance with the new album. Now if he would apologize for his last decade of work.
Breaking out during an outbreak
Because of the paranoia surrounding the Ebola virus, various quarantines were put in place for any military or health workers coming back from African countries where the outbreak was ongoing. To protest the forced quarantine she was under in New Jersey, nurse Kaci Hickox made herself into a political pawn. She broke her quarantine, was sent home to Maine, and broke her quarantine there, too. Karma hasn’t been reached for comment.
Sticking the landing
A commercial rocket carrying supplies and scientific experiments exploded just six seconds into its launch at a NASA facility in Virginia. Officials say that the rocket was terminated when it was clear there was a problem that would keep it from reaching orbit, plus it’s fun to scare the crap out of the local wildlife.
The tens of thousands of people who voted in the U.S. sent a clear message to Washington: “Do that thing where you read the Constitution again.” Republicans won handily in the House and Senate, and will take control of the legislative branch in January. Analysts say we can expect to see hundreds more symbolic votes against Obamacare, and a bunch of white guys looking lost during the State of the Union in a couple months.
Attack on everything we hold dear
Photos of a nude Kim Kardashian appeared as a spread in Paper magazine, claiming it was attempting to “break the internet.” Folks, the world relies on the internet. It creates jobs, it makes markets run, it connects us to each other. It’s vital to the way we live. Kim Kardashian tried to destroy that for us. Lives could have been lost. We’ve got no choice but to declare war on her. Kim Kardashian must be held accountable for these attacks.
The European Space Agency’s Philae probe landed on a comet after chasing it down for a decade. It’s the first time in history that mankind has ever landed a probe on something not the moon or Mars. Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko was first discovered in 1969. It is estimated to be 3.1 miles long and 2.4 miles tall, which makes it roughly the same size as Kim Kardashian’s ass.
Stephen Hawking warns of forthcoming robot revolution
World-renowned astrophysicist Stephen Hawking warned that artificial intelligence could one day bring mankind to an end. Hawking recently switched to a new voice system that uses artificial intelligence to predict what words he may use next based on what he has already said. One of the smartest people on Earth is now using autocorrect and saying it could kill us all. Sleep tight, everyone!
This Interview is over
After weeks of hacks, threats and leaks, Sony Pictures announced that it would not release The Interview with Seth Rogen and James Franco. The U.S. formally accused North Korea of perpetrating the cyberattacks, which makes sense, since the movie is about trying to assassinate Kim Jong Un, and their sense of humor sucks. Angry moviegoers called Sony cowardly, saying that it they were going to pull a movie this year, it should have been The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
The year the Cold War ended
President Barack Obama announced that the U.S. and Cuba would resume normal diplomatic relations after more than 50 years of embargo. The hottest holiday gift this year? Cuban cigars.