Some would say that judging a year after 72 hours has passed is premature. Those people are touchingly stupid, and have no understanding of today’s media landscape. Why wait and see when you can open your mouth and make opinion noises now?
So far, 2014 is the Year of the Cold Snow, as there seems to be a great deal of not only snow but also coldness nearly everywhere that people who write for national news organizations live. As of Friday morning, CNN featured the following on its homepage:
… the answer being, obviously not. There is no parallel in human experience that compares to the anguish of this shoeless, forgotten being now carrying his shattered dreams in a Trader Joe’s reusable tote. Sorry, airport guy. Clearly, for you, 2014 earns a F-.
But it’s not all frigid doom and snowy, shovel-y gloom. 2014 has ALSO been the year of Injustice for Donkey Ball But Validation For the Very Real Emotions of Donkeys. For the few of you who are unfamiliar, donkey ball is a game of basketball played on donkeyback, which is hilarious for humans but never seems very funny to the donkeys.
Anyway, back in 2009, two dour and humorless donkeys pitched their human riders off, at which point those humans sued the other humans who had allowed them to get on the donkeys in the first place, which was thrown out due to a signed waiver. HOWEVER! U.S. District Judge Eduardo C. Robreno has ruled that Donkey Ball is NOT, in fact, a proper sport or athletic pursuit, and therefore the insurers are on the hook for the injuries.
Technically, this happened at the very end of 2013 but we’re just now hearing about it. Since important donkey ball jurisprudence is not real until discussed on the internet, we’re counting it as 2014. For the donkeys who have long felt that Donkey Ball should not be real, 2014 earns an A-.
As we’ve all heard by now, in Boston, a gracious hostess had no choice but to bite off one of her guest’s little toes after a series of increasingly problematic party happenings. Does this mean that 2014 is the Year of the Unorthodox But Effective Communication Techniques? Yes. For that brave and bold woman who cast off the shackles of conventional etiquette in order to do what is right*, 2014 earns a C+, with two letter grades taken off because she lacked the conviction and jaw strength to go for the big toe.
(*Biting off toes is not right.)
For David Brooks, 2014 is the Year of Saying Absolutely Nothing of Value Re:The Drug War While Drawing Policy Conclusions Based On His Own Vague Recollections; for the rest of us, 2014 is the Year of Continuing to Be Curious About the New York Times’ Staffing Decisions. Grade: A+++ to David Brooks for overcoming his debilitating marijuana addiction and succeeding despite all odds.
In even more expected news, 2014 is the Year of Florida Continuing to Be The Batshit Craziest State in the Union. For space reasons, we’ll skip the story of the escaped lioness, the pizza delivery driver who made beautiful love to a German Shepherd, and lack of leads for the Wal-Mart employee whose crime-fighting strategy included throwing beer cans from the bed of a moving pickup truck onto Interstate 95, and instead get right to the severed mystery foot.
The facts, as we understand them: On New Year’s Day, a foot showed up, all by its lonesome, save for a New Balance sneaker and sock, on the beach. Right now, they think the foot detached “naturally.” Martin County Sheriff William Snyder speculated to Reuters that this may have happened “because of a large fish shaking the body.” 2014: Year of the Body-Shaking Giant Fish’s Reign of Terror? Snyder said that they don’t really know whether the body is male or female, but he thinks it’s a dude based on the following watertight detective work:
“It’s a kind of shoe I would buy and I wouldn’t buy anything that looked like a woman’s shoe,” he told the reporter. 2014: Year of Martin County Sheriff William Snyder’s Continued Heteronormativity.
Grade: F to the giant fish, for forcing all of us to look down at our left foot and wonder if someday it too will float away from us on the indifferent sea while a giant fish glides soundlessly away. B+ for Florida and its enduring marvels.
Anyway, that’s it. There is every single thing of consequence that has happened so far this year. 2014: The Year of Things.