Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

Well, it's been a loooong 2008. A very, very long 2008. Filled with plenty of drama, excitement, and pretty much everything else. It's been a wild ride. Who would've thought, on January 1, 2008, that we'd be where we are today?

Among the things that happened...

The phraes "downward spiral" became the new hot phrase for a while as America tumbled into an economic crisis, dragging the rest of the world down with it. With the fall of Lehman Brothers in September, all hell broke loose, as countless banks found themselves billions in debt, the marekts seized up, and the new "credit crunch" (hey, another fun phrase!) became all the rage. When the Fed stepped in to buy Fannie and Freddie, AIG, etc., we knew that this was for real. Especially when markets in other countries started to fail. Go us!

All was not lost at home, however, as the buzzword "change" found itself the most popular kid on the block. Barack Obama's dazzling victory in the US presidential election was as inspiring a story as people have heard in their lifetimes, uniting a troubled populace and smashing racial barriers left and right. If there's anyone that helped give the world hope for the coming year, it is he.

In the meantime, John McCain fought a good fight, and Sarah Palin singlehandedly taught America how to stop thinking and embrace their inner fanatic. To Katie Couric's smug amusement.

Abroad, the world found its fair share of conflicts. The world will remember the Mumbai attacks that claimed the lives of hundreds, and took a city hostage for three days, all at the hands of ten men. And let's not forget the growing spread of terrorism everywhere: While they may not have claimed quite as many lives, hundreds of other attacks claimed the lives of countless innocents. Frankly, that just shows what a sorry state this world is in.

Oh, and Somalian pirates took over the waters near the horn of Africa. At least this means that global warming is finally slowly down.

Meanwhile, Russia waged war against Georgia over Georgia's breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Who started it: No one knows. What it means for the world: The Russian bear is stretching its legs. And Putin's still in power, by the way.

Iraq got somewhat better... and Afghanistan got a lot worse. Funny the way the world works, eh?

Oh, and Fidel Castro stepped down, among the hundreds of other interesting things that happened that I didn't manage to mention. Didn't you hear?

The Beijing Olympics united the world in peace and harmony for a few weeks this summer... except for the whole Russia-waging-war thing. Still, it was a fun show, especially when Michael Phelps let his inner dolphin show. Such an amazing, talented, and sexy young man... Erm. Moving on.

The iPhone and iPod continued to conquer the world... I suggest you all keep a hammer handy. Apple may decide to proceed to Phase 2 of their iWorldDomination Scheme soon. Wouldn't want to have those lasers firing out of your iDevices hitting your eyes...

And the Large Hadron Collider, or LHC, based in Geneva, Switzerland, did not create a black hole and kill us all. That was Jeremiah Wright, and luckily, his dastardly plot was foiled by a media slipup that probably ended his career. And no, Barack is not "cool" with you anymore, Jeremiah.

Heath Ledger won my heart with the release of Batman: The Dark Knight, which despite the criticism of countless critics, still remains my favorite movie of 2008. Why so serious? Beacause your performance was so flipping amazing, Heath. That's why.

Rafael Nadal unseated Roger Federer as the king of tennis in what may have been the greatest tennis match of all time. And the Phillies, yes, the Philadelphia Phillies won the World Series.

And some crazy blogger decided to start up a blog called Defenestrate!, which is read by an average of two to three people daily. If that. Who knows? Maybe by 2010, ten people will have read this post. That, my friends, is the miraculous wonder that is the internet.

Here's to a happy, healthy, prosperous, and significantly amusing 2009. Can't hope for more than that.

(Note: If you're still craving to reminisce on the year that was, check out The 2008 List of Lists. If you read slowly enough, it'll keep you occupied until 2010.)

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