Jewish World Review Jan. 2, 2003 / 28 Teves 5763
A look back at a sorry but pretty funny year
http://www.NewsAndOpinion.com | What a year! 365 days chock full of fun, fun, fun. Terrorism...Insider Trading... Unemployment... Enron... Snipers...Church Scandals...War...?! Then again with the triple play apology combination of Ovitz to Trent to Cardinal Law, 2002 could be easily called a very sorry year. Can you say, "party"?!
But as the real world hurtled along with his usual dearth of these good times, we are assured that the Creator does has a sense of humor as he gave us plenty of '02 moments, suitable for your entertainment needs.
Lest we forget...
TAKE 98 DEGREES WITH YOU: When N'Sync's Justin Timberlake wasn't warbling songs appropriate for anyone under ten, he was suited up, training for space exploration, Russian style. So far he hasn't made it but donations are pouring in with the stipulation that he take ex-flame, Britney Spears, with him. (Note: No donations have come in for the return flight) Rumors of former astronauts Gagarin and Glenn forming boy band run rampant.
INSIDER TRADING...IT'S A GOOD THING: The House Energy and Commerce committee called designing diva Martha Stewart in front of them to explain her seeming stock indiscretions. She not only took the fifth, she actually fashioned a lovely taffeta comforter suitable for framing out of it. Keep in mind that Martha's actual benefit totaled approximately $48,000 over what she would have gained if she waited a day after the news. Meanwhile, after billions of dollars of bad advice to investors, telecommunications analyst, Jack Grubman, received 13.2 million severance from Salomon, Smith Barney. Sending Martha to prison for her little faux pas would be cruel and unusual punishment. My G-d, do you know how low the thread count is in prison sheets?
OZZIE AND HARRIET TURNING OVER? Drugs, drinking, enough obscenities to fill a headless bat...The Osbournes are now America's first family. Invited to the White House and toasted by the President, will Conservative values ever be the same.
AMERICA GOES MADISON AVE.: "Were going to put lipstick on this pig and see if it flies.". The metaphor comes home as the Bush administration creates the Office of Global Communication to counteract a poor image of America to the rest of the world leading to an abundant of slogan possibilities.
(John: Pick as many as you'd like)
AND, OF COURSE, TO BACK IT ALL UP, THE RIGHT JINGLE...
My country has a first name, it's U-n-i-t-ed
MR. TOP GOES TO WASHINGTON? Backstreet Boy, Howie Dorough and Pretty Woman, Julia Roberts, provide expert testimony in front of congressional committees. Any day, look for Carrot Top to testify about his nuclear proliferation concerns.
MASTERS HAS SUFFRAGE PROBLEMS: Hootie Johnson, chairman of the male-only Augusta National Golf Club, refuses to buckle under and open membership to women prior to this year's Masters Tournament. At Hooties's birthday party, Trent Lott said we wouldn't have all the problems we have today if Hootie had been elected President in1920.
AARP OUGHTA PICKET. Tom Hanks received AFI's Lifetime Achievement Award at the age of 47. How did the poor old guy make it up to the stage. Next year, Freddie Prinze Jr.?
BUT YOU HAD THE VOTES: Al Gore the man who received the most votes for President in 2000, dropped out of the '04 race. Maybe because his appearance on Saturday Night Live received better ratings than his own ratings among Democrats.
OOPS!...SHE'S ON THE COVER AGAIN. Forbes Magazine named Britney Spears the most powerful celebrity in the world, which leads one to believe that Radio Disney has replaced Billboard as the foremost authority and indicator of musical taste.
SKATEGATE. AND TANYA HARDING WASN'T WITHIN A MILE OF THE EVENT: Can you say rigged...in French? At the Winter Olympics, Canadian figure skaters, Jamie Sale and David Pelletier, lost the pairs gold medal to Russians, Yelena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze in what later was found to be questionable scoring by the French judge. Even after the Canadians were awarded an additional gold medal, auditors at Arthur Anderson along with stock analyst Jack Grubman gave the judging a triple A rating.
DOES HE REALLY NEED THE MONEY?: And do we really need another Waterboy? Adam Sandler is paid a gazillion dollars to portray a rags to riches billionaire in, "Mr. Deeds," a rich and complex tale of one man's wacky confrontation with his own private hell. Looks like surefire Oscars for all involved.
STILL THE SINGLE GUY: ABC's hit, "The Bachelor," the show that spent 3 intimate months promising that this guy would decide which woman he would marry, ended with absolutely no one getting married.
THERE'S PROBABLY ANOTHER GOOD STORY THAT HAD TO BE TOLD. There will be a "Charley' Angels II."
WILL HE BECOME A CIGARETTE CEO OR THE NEXT SEINFELD?: Former Enron chief executive Jeffrey Skilling, testified before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee and described himself as "...devastated and apologetic about what Enron has come to represent," insisting that the company was "solvent and highly profitable" when he resigned only 3½ months before the Enron's collapse. Skilling witticisms were water-cooler material for months afterwards.
"I can't for the life of me understand how we would go from where I thought the company was to bankruptcy."
"I did not believe that the company was in any imminent financial peril."
"While I was at Enron, I was not aware of any financing arrangements designed to conceal liabilities or inflate profitability."
In a related story, and proving that there were still people at Enron who weren't interested in hiding anything, Playboy magazine published a Girls of Enron pictorial.
SWISH, BOOM, BANG: In what might be called a bit of a public relations faux pas, former power broker, Michael Ovitz, used an August Vanity Fair interview to blame Dreamworks' David Geffen and the rest of his "Gay Mafia," for his demise. Can anything else I add make this any funnier?
WHERE HAVE YOU GONE, O.J.: Say it ain't so, Winona. Hearts, minds and television cameras were riveted to the Winona Ryder shoplifting trial or what's come to be known just as The Most Recent Trial of the Century. The trial wasn't as funny as the selection of Hollywood power broker, producer, Peter Guber, to the jury.
THE LONE WHITE LONER STILL ON THE LOOSE?: Weeks of cable shows offered a myriad of experts who unanimously agreed that the profile of the Washington, D.C. area sniper was of a single white loner in a white panel truck. The two black suspects arrested in their Chevrolet Caprice plan to use the "do we look like a single white loner to you?" defense.
SPLENDID SPLINTER STOPPED COLD: Baseball legend Ted Williams passed on leaving his loving children trying to freeze each other out of the burial (or storage) plans. Family representatives said the William's heirs were only quarreling strictly out of love for their father. Appeals were dropped when the parties agreed to split $625 thousand from the estate.
MINERS BURY COUNTRY'S PROBLEMS...FOR A COUPLE MINUTES: For a week in July the heroic rescue of the nine trapped minors in western Pennsylvania took the country's mind off terrorism and stock market woes. President Bush saluted the men and word is that, "for the good of the country," administration advisor Karl Rove ask the miners to get trapped at least once a month.
COLOR CODING SECURITY: The Department of Homeland Security issued a series of color-coded alerts in order to advise the American population as to the level of potential terrorist attack. Unfortunately the White House offered no colors to explain what we should do if there actually was an attack.
GAY MILITARY LINGUISTS DISMISSED: With a severe shortage of Arabic translators, the Army discharged a number of homosexual linguists because of their sexual preference. Guess the Army fears a message that read, "Very soon we will be bombing American institutions throughout the world," might be translated by one of the gay linguists as "Hey, Richard look at this. There's a sale on leather chaps at Nordstroms this week."
TOO MUCH ANNA NICOLE? E!'s homage to The Osbournes, The Anna Nicole Show has been a hit for the entertainment news network. They've renewed for a second year but it already looks like they're running out of story ideas. The final show of the year spent the entire 30 minutes just showing Smith laying down on her bed so she could fit into a moo-moo.
SCANDAL IN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH: With the continual revelations of improprieties by priests and coverups by the church, don't be surprised if police will required to notify resident when a new minister moves into the neighborhood.
CONDIT GOES BYE-BYE: In a reelection bid, Gary Condit lost in the California state primary. Condit blamed his loss on his opponent's negative campaign. His opponent blamed it on Condit's negative performance. Who cares. He's gone.
JACKSON MAKES A BOO-BOO: Michael Jackson held his 6 month old child, one handed, over a balcony in Germany. The self-anointed King of Pop said he had made a grievous mistake. Was he speaking about being trusted to have children in the first place?
In a related story, Jackson said that record companies conspire against black artists. They had schemed against him, he said...when he was black.
BUSH CHOKES BIG TIME: President Bush suffered a fainting spell after swallowing a pretzel while watching football alone at the White House. Officials said that from now on, on the days the President chooses to eat pretzels, Vice President Cheney will not.
McCCARTNEY CREDIT REVERSE SETS A DANGEROUS PRECEDENT: Paul McCartney's decision to reverse the order of the famous Lennon-McCartney songwriting credit to McCartney-Lennon may open the doors to a firestorm of litigation and corporate turmoil he never imagined. Word is that the infighting at Johnson & Johnson has already boiled over with the families of Johnson battling the families of Johnson over the name sequence. Will it be long before we'll be seeing Johnson & Johnson recycled as Johnson & Johnson. I say that if Johnson had wanted to have his name first, then he should have thought of it when they made the decision in the first place. Besides, Johnson & Johnson sounds ridiculous.
May 2003 bring ten times the laughs and one-tenth the grief.
12/30/02: Using 2002’s failures to make a successful 2003