Well look who finally got on the “this year sucked” train. I’ve been doing this for years, everyone just finally caught up. I have a theory that 2016 was the Rapture. Everyone you love who was good is gone. Now we’re just in a hollow wasteland, and there’s the devil about. Either that, or we’re old enough that famous people we’ve heard of are starting to die off. This year was a lot like 1941 — we all knew there was conflict, and the headlines were really interesting, then an awful day toward the end of year made nothing feel the same again. This was indeed the worst year yet. Kim Kardashian had something bad happen to her for once. We cheered for sad sack teams. The Supreme Court became an octet. We held a months-long funeral for a gorilla we’d never heard of. We bought some Cuban cigars. We stood really still in videos. Let’s do to 2016 what it did to a lot of famous people, shall we?
Let freedom wear a c@#k ring
The armed hicks occupying a tiny federal office building at a remote Oregon wildlife sanctuary complained in a video that people keep sending them sex toys, including a whole bunch of dildos. The group made an appeal to “real patriots” to send them supplies, as they were so busy packing their guns they forgot to bring food and water for their camping trip. America responded by sending them plastic penises, which is a phrase I’ve waited to write my whole life. Upon hearing the news, Cards Against Humanity co-founder Max Temkin, really, sent the occupiers a 55-gallon barrel of lube.
Blowing up the airwaves
North Korea said it successfully tested a hydrogen bomb, but experts weren’t so sure it worked. In any case, the test marked another act of defiance of international sanctions. In response, South Korea set up loudspeakers along the border and began blasting K-pop. These two countries are like feuding neighbors in an apartment building. One keeps making the floor shake with loud thumps, so the other cranks their music, in this case, Psy.
From Mexico with love
After capturing escaped drug lord El Chapo, Mexican authorities published his text messages on his phone. Many were shocked not only to see that he was in contact with Mexican actress Kate del Castillo, but that his texts were quite romantic. He told her, “I’ll care for you more than my own eyes,” and even suggested having her meet his mother. Maybe we’ve got these guys all wrong. We just need to help these drug cartels find love and they’ll stop massacring entire towns.
Supreme Court position proves to be death sentence once again
When Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died, politicians wanted to properly and soberly mourn the man’s passing by immediately telling President Barack Obama what to do. Democrats asked him to nominate a judge immediately, while many Republicans asked him not to nominate anyone. All 73 GOP presidential candidates shared this opinion because they want to nominate someone. Donald Trump said he would nominate his good friend Judge Judy, while Rep. Ted Cruz said he would nominate Judge Lance Ito to support diversity on the bench and because “that FX show is really cool.”
The last time you’ll hear from Johnny Manziel
Authorities said ex-Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel struck and threatened his ex girlfriend. The victim said he threatened to shoot her and himself. Luckily, no one was in any danger, because if anyone applied pressure, his aim would have been off.
Data-collecting companies now defending privacy
Apple said it would not comply with an FBI request to unlock the iPhones of the San Bernadino shooters, citing privacy concerns, and the fact that the terrorists are still dead. The move was praised by privacy advocates and criticized by those who want to see the investigation completed. In a letter explaining his company’s position, CEO Tim Cook suggested that the FBI instead set wait until the next iPhone model is out, promising it will be more unlockable than ever.
Superman wins 0 states on Super Tuesday
Voters in 12 states voted in their states’ primaries, or causes, or whatever they thought was a good idea for selecting a candidate to run for president. Donald Trump pulled further away from fellow Republicans, as the wave of antidisestablishmentarianism continues to sweep through conservative voters. Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders won a few states, making the 24-year-long plot line of Hillary Clinton interesting for another few weeks. Not to editorialize, but our fascination with end-of-the-world shows and movies is going a little too far.
Hulkamania runs wild all over Gawker
A judge awarded Hulk Hogan $115 million in his lawsuit against Gawker for posting a sex tape of him back in 2012. The decision is certain to be appealed by Gawker. However, if I know anything about sex tapes, the video’s release is going to launch this kid’s career. I think we’ll be seeing a lot of the Hulkster in the years to come.
State Department gets too real
The State Department sent out some tweets aimed at keeping college students safe when traveling abroad during spring break. One tweet that took some flak for being insensitive read, “Not a ’10’ in the US? Then not a 10 overseas. Beware of being lured into buying expensive drinks or worse–being robbed.” This tweet is actually good advice. Europeans are generally way hotter than Americans. If you’re not a 10 where you live, move to the Midwest. You’ll be slaying it.
The side project awakens
The trailer for Rogue One, a new Star Wars movie that takes place around the time of the first trilogy, hit the internet. And because it was the Star Wars, the internet went bonkers. However, Trump supporters said they have had enough of the liberal Rebellion media coverage. They declared it was bad trade deals that brought down the Old Republic establishment, and the galaxy far, far away needs a firm, authoritarian hand to unite it.
Time to probe some aliens
A group of investors and scientists, including Mark Zuckerberg, Russian billionaire Yuri Milner and famed physicist Stephen Hawking announced an initiative to send a bunch of tiny probes to Alpha Centauri, the closest star system to Earth. The nanocraft would travel four light-years in about two decades. So let the record show that when the Centaurian War is over, we fired first.
Gays now welcome in Catholic Church
Pope Francis released a letter calling for the Catholic Church to be a more welcoming place. He called on priests to be more accepting of single parents, divorced couples and most notably, gay couples. In the very same week it was announced the pope was considering visiting, and this is true, the island of Lesbos. Who’s got the stones to tell the infallible guy it’s not what he thinks?
A challenge America can handle
It was announced that the U.S. was in the midst of a cheese surplus. According to the Department of Agriculture, a glut of milk lead to increased cheese production. At the same time, we were importing a lot of cheese from Europe. Cheesemongers flooded the market. So they started putting cheese in exciting new products, like a cheese-stuffed burger, cheese-stuffed fries, or, capitalizing on the breakfast food craze, cheese-stuffed pillows.
Smokin’ in the bathroom that matches your gender identity
The Obama administration released a letter of guidance to public schools to allow transgender students to use the bathrooms they are most comfortable with. North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory called on Congress and federal courts to defeat the guidance, saying that students should use the bathroom that matches the gender on their birth certificate. Because North Carolina has a rich history of making people use the bathrooms and water fountains according to certain physical characteristics.
We live in an alternate universe
This week, Donald Trump became the presumptive Republican nominee after Ted Cruz and John Kasich dropped out of the race, ending Carly Fiorina’s record-short vice presidential bid. Not to be outdone, Bernie Sanders said the Democratic National Convention would be contested … for some reason. It’s good to see that poor decision making doesn’t belong to one party, isn’t it?
A personal note
I’ll be honest–June was pretty blurry for me. My daughter was born in early June. *Pauses for applause.* It’s something that happens suddenly. One minute you’re not a father, then they pull a baby out of your wife and you are one. There’s no easing into it. I changed my daughter’s first diaper. It was the first diaper I ever changed. I made it 33 years without having to change a single diaper. She shows up and ruins my streak in less than an hour of existence. For my whole life, up to then, I could say I had wiped only one butt hole ever. Not anymore.
U.K. leaves EU
Britons voted to leave the European Union, the first such country to do so. Voters insisted that the vote was about state’s rights, and not about blatant racism. Ask the South how that works out.
Hottest new app: Bordr
The U.S. Customs and Border Patrol proposed that visitors to America be asked to write down their social media addresses so that they could be monitored. If the visitors agree, the agency can try to access both public and private social media posts and communications. Agents would then swipe right to let them in and swipe left to send them back.
Fear and loathing in Cleveland
The Republican National Convention was held in Cleveland—as if that city hasn’t seen enough hardship. The event had everything: a voting controversy, an ethics controversy, Rudy “I Was Mayor on 9/11” Giuliani yelling like he was at Wrestlemania, racism, homophobia, xenophobia, transphobia, funny hats, chants about imprisoning opponents and Donald Trump yelling a speech about how everything is terrible but he will fix it. All the hard work Leni Riefenstahl put into the event really came though.
Woman up for man’s job
The Democrats nominated Hillary Clinton for president–the first woman to ever get the nomination from a major party. So let that be a lesson to all you young ladies out there, if you work hard, believe in yourself, and have your friends rig the system, you too can run the country someday. It’s about time women caught on to the winning game plan white men have been using for thousands of years.
Pokemon Go gets big, goes away
Everyone started playing Pokemon Go on their smartphones. Literally everyone. It became the sensation of the summer. Everywhere you went, people were walking around looking at their phones, only they weren’t taking selfies. After about three weeks, people realized the outdoors is no place for video games.
Sexism is the newest event
The Olympic Games are a sporting tradition like no other. Once every four years, the world comes together act like it cares about swimming, gymnastics and women in sports in general. NBC took a fair amount of criticism for sexism from the commentators during its coverage of the first week of the summer games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. NBC apologized for any accidentally sexist comments, and insisted it has no problem with covering girls as they compete in their own separate but equal little events, but it’s going to be tough to keep from getting excited during the women’s trampoline competition, ya know?
Obama administration’s greatest accomplishment
A bombshell of a story was released, finding that for the first time since 1979, the federal government’s dietary guidelines did not include flossing your teeth. The government acknowledged that there was no scientific evidence that flossing daily made a significant impact on one’s oral health. So that thing you never did in the first place? Keep on not doing it.
What Did Ryan Lochte Do?
American swimmer Ryan Lochte, who probably sees Flea’s hair stylist, reported he and some teammates were robbed at gunpoint during a night out in Rio de Janeiro. Turns out he and his buddies, all of whom are adults, trashed a gas station and urinated all over the place when they weren’t allowed to use the restroom. The truth about the incident wasn’t known for days because of NBC’s tape delay.
Apple jacks jack
Apple rolled out its latest line of new stuff, which included a new version of a watch no one is buying, and a new version of a smartphone, except without the audio jack everyone uses. Because Steve Jobs didn’t do the presentation, the bad idea was heavily criticized by tech bloggers and consumers alike. In an act of revenge, Apple put another new U2 album in the iTunes libraries of every single critic.
Carlos Danger is bad at secrets
Anthony Weiner, the one-man answer to the question “Is sex addiction really a thing?” got caught again. According to reports, he was sexting a 15-year-old girl. Just weeks after getting caught–again–and his wife filing for divorce, a high school girl said she had been carrying on a months-long sexting relationship with Weiner, 51. But I think everyone deserves a 16th chance, don’t you?
Let’s hop on the sponsored content train
A study found that smoking can damage your DNA for 30 years, and sometimes permanently. But really, if you’re smoking that much, aren’t those the same thing? That same news, sponsored by Phillip Morris: A new study finds that smoking is so cool, it injects coolness into your DNA–sometimes permanently. So light one up today, you’ll be cool inside and out.
Ken Bone makes a boner
During the second presidential debate, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump yelled at each other on live TV. During the town hall-style debate, America discovered Ken Bone, a red sweater-clad voter who had somehow not made up his mind. Bone became an instant celebrity. He used his fame to endorse Uber and did a Reddit AMA. The formerly anonymous Bone forgot to delete questionable Reddit comments, like his thoughts on certain porn stars and the murder of Trayvon Martin, before hand. As we have seen with Pepe the Frog and Chewbacca Mom, never become internet famous.
A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that STD rates in the U.S. rose last year. The reported cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis all rose dramatically. Also up last year: reality dating shows.
Jesus’ tomb to be opened
Researchers in Jerusalem excavated part of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, what is believed to be the tomb of Jesus. They hope to open the tomb and make it available for tourists one day. But if you read the book, you already know Jesus isn’t in there.
In a victory surprising to anyone who covers this stuff for a living and is supposed to know better, Donald Trump won the presidential election. Despite getting 3 million fewer votes than Hillary Clinton, he won the necessary amount of electoral votes to get in. But with only 55.3% of eligible voters turning out, the majority of America carried on its proud tradition of electing to sit on the couch instead.
It was revealed that a man in Yellowstone National Park ignored all the warning signs and went up to a geyser looking to take a relaxing dip. He then fell into the scalding hot, acidic water and ended up dying. If that’s not 2016 in a nutshell, nothing is.
Disney’s “Moana” opened in Italy under a different name. The movie is named after its lead. The titular character is a Polynesian princess that goes on some sort of an adventure. But in Italy the movie is called “Oceania” because the name Moana is closely associated with adult film star Moana Pozzi. This is name change is expected to save millions of Italian men from going to the wrong movie.
Study: Your grandparents were right
A study found that the old adage “never go to bed angry” may be good advice after all. Scientists found that subjects were less likely to think back on something negative, like an argument, if they resolved the issue and had a solid night’s sleep. Those who didn’t resolve the issue tended not to sleep as well and were more likely to have memories of the issue associated with anger. The scientists’ wives remained unconvinced.
Report: Trump was right about the election being rigged
The FBI backed a CIA report that Russia hacked the U.S. presidential election in favor of a Trump victory. It’s also been reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin was involved in the decision to hack. But Republicans decided it’s not a concern, as they cannot find a way to blame Hillary Clinton for it, yet.
Optimism is overrated
And finally, a new report found that trying to always find the silver lining when things don’t go your way could actually bad for you. If that’s the case, 2016 has been a landmark year in mental health.
Thanks everyone for sharing the year with us. We’ll see you in 2017, because we not famous enough to die.