2013: it's not over until it's over and now it's over. I think Yogi Berra said that. Or something close. Just like he once said that no one goes to such and such restaurant anymore because it's too crowded. Yogi-isms are the best and everything is the rest.
But let's just jump in and with a quick, over-the-shoulder-glance reflect on this year now almost past.
Best word of the 2013? Has to be "twerking." And this isn't something you can buy over the counter. We're talking mating ritual dance moves as recently performed by Miley Cyrus on the Video Music Awards. Elvis has definitely left the building.
Second best word now in the urban dictionary:
"Selfie." You know, you hold up your phone, arm extended, and snap a picture. Then send it out there into the electronic abyss. Or cloud. Whatever that is. It's the latest in fashionable, trendy narcissism. Kind of a MeTube.
And who can forget the Republicans, a.k.a. Extortion Is Us: This would be the crew that held the country hostage, figuratively tied to a chair in a warehouse somewhere in the industrial section of D.C. while waiting for the Dems' ransom, meaning repeal the Affordable Care Act. Or else. So, how did that work out for you folks? Of course, there's always the next debt ceiling moment in early spring.
Questions to ponder: what are bitcoins and can they buy you a Starbucks? What are twitter-trolls and where do they live? Are millions addictively consuming Candy Crush? Is it a game or does it come with a wrapper? And what's up with Catfishing on line?
One surreal moment in 2013: Dennis Rodman, giant ex-jock, self-designated ambassador of good will, all tattooed and pierced, sitting at a press conference with his new BFF, Kim Jong Un, that porky little dictator of North Korea with a seriously bad haircut, who just had his former BFF, aging uncle and mentor, executed. Good luck with that bromance, Dennis.
Of course you've heard that Kimye (the Kanye West and Kim Kardashian hybrid) named their new baby North. As in North West. Really? You haven't heard this? Feel free to place your head in your hands and weep for the future of pop culture, if that's not an oxymoron. Or Western civilization in general.
Breaking Bad part one: Bob Filner, ex-mayor of San Diego, who perfected the Filner Headlock, would grab any handy female assistant, put her in a headlock (with a noogie), while insisting he was just being endearing. Charming, right? Women were not pleased.
And following in the "seriously?" footsteps of Filner was Rob Ford, still mayor of Toronto, who swore he never inhaled. Look up train wreck in the dictionary and his picture is featured. Standard celebrity response: rehab. Mayor Filner was in and out in a week and swore he felt much better. Mayor Ford's reaction: twerking.
Seen stepping out of an Oprah Winfrey confessional booth, Lance Armstrong, who gave truthiness new meaning. Yellow was the new black.
Appearing on Jay Leno: G.W. Bush waxing poetic about his new hobby, painting. Really? Painting? Wait. Does that look like a flower? How many soldiers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, our wars of choice, wish they could paint something "¦ anything?
For the global warming denialists: recall the Halyan Typhoon in the Philippines and think extreme weather. It was not a black swan event. Honest.
Way more than fifteen minutes of fame: Mandela. Boston Strong. The soldiers who placed their trust in our political leaders and went to Iraq and Afghanistan. Pope Francis. The Affordable Care Act. Angelina Jolie going public. Pussy Riot and free speech. "12 Years a Slave."
Way less than fifteen minutes of fame: Sydney Leathers, serial tweeter and BFF of Anthony Weiner (Anthony's tweet handle, Carlos Danger, master of the selfie, poster child for "What was he thinking?"). Watermelon Oreos. Ron Burgundy. "Duck Dynasty." The Cronut (a croissant/donut hybrid). "Orange is the New Black." Prancercise. Delicacy du jour in Europe — horsemeat (whoops). "The Lone Ranger" movie. Gun control (sadly).
Breaking bad part two: Bashar al-Assad of Syria and his chemistry set. Justin Bieber. Miley Cyrus atop a wrecking ball. Black Friday. The Tea Party. Ted Cruz and green eggs and ham. Texas. The Republican Invincibles still trying to repeal health care reform. The far-right birthers: Obama's still from Kenya. Edward Snowden. Russia and homophobia.
And thus concludes, such as it was, 2013. And when reflecting on 2014, remember what Yogi Bera said: "The future ain't what it used to be." He also said, "I'm not going to buy my kids an encyclopedia. Let them walk to school like I did."
I hope you're smiling. Best wishes.
Chris Honoré lives in Ashland.