You may be aware that the year 2012 has been completed successfully, and that Earth has failed to end. You may also be aware that many more things are likely to happen in 2013. This is unfortunate but true. Another thing that is unfortunate but true is that we are going to analyse the things that happened in 2012, which hopefully will help you better understand what will happen in 2013. After all, our analysis of the things that happened in 2011 surely helped you better understand what happened in 2012. In fact, we feel confident in telling you that the result of the US presidential election might have been drastically different had Gov Mitt Romney read our analysis of the things that happened in 2011.
Note: Although 2012 has been over for a while, that does not preclude us from making absurd judgements about it.
Mars Science Laboratory landing, Mars
Gaby says: Any damn fool can land on Mars with a huge wad of bounding air bags. But it takes real skill to lower a rover on a crane from the spacecraft’s descent stage hovering about seven metres above the ground.
Transit of Venus, Earth
Gaby says: Hope you saw this – your next chance is in 105 years.
Hurricane Sandy, United States
Deb says: This storm killed more than 250 people between the Caribbean and the US East Coast. Millions of people were without electricity for days after the storm. Damage in the US is estimated at upwards of US$60,000,000,000. For these reasons, Hurricane Sandy was far and away the worst event of 2012. Dishonourable mention to the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Felix BAUMGARTNER’s space dive, United States
Edvard says: On SUN 14 OCT 2012, Felix Baumgartner entered a helium balloon at ground level and exited it in the stratosphere. He descended more than 36 km in freefall and another 3 km with a parachute. Why would anyone do such a thing? Well, obviously, for the honour of earning recognition from us here at GoobNet for the Silliest Event of 2012.
Mayan apocalypse predictions, Earth
Gaby says: For one thing, nobody knows exactly when the Mayan Long Count rolls over. For another, the Mayans did not believe that the rollover of the Long Count would be the end of the world. And, of course, there is no secret planet Nibiru. Other than those things, the predictions were spot on. Well done, doomsayers. Honourable mention to the US film John Carter and the US$200,000,000 – and chairman’s position – that it cost Disney.
The Exit List, United Kingdom
Deb says: This quiz programme had everything: challenging subject matter, the Panic Rooms that test short term memory, the end game that requires players to recall all the answers they already gave, the concluding wager on whether the teammate could successfully complete the end game, and a fantastic set design straight out of Tron. This was a wonderful addition to The Cube, giving ITV a powerful collection of futuristic game shows. And yet, it got poor ratings and was killed after just seven episodes. Come now, British viewing public. You are better than this.
Oh Sit, United States
Deb says: Yes, there is a programme on US television that its network summarises as “extreme musical chairs”. Yes, it got halfway decent ratings. Yes, it has been picked up for a second season. Yes, we here at GoobNet do not view this as a positive development for humanity.
The Bank Job, United Kingdom
Deb says: The Bank Job began with a special week of shows, in which the five winners returned in Saturday’s grand final to decide which players would take away the money. Darragh and Michael were the last two standing and were therefore given an opportunity to share GB£467,500. This is what happened. There’s not really much we can add to that, other than the show’s most memorable quote from host George Lamb: “Boys! What have you done?!”
Donald TRUMP, United States
Amber Lynn says: Mr Trump believes that US president Barack Obama either was not born in Hawai‘i [despite the copious evidence to the contrary] or that he did not get the college grades he said he did [despite the copious evidence to the contrary]. It seems that most Americans, though, agree with us in that we do not care what he thinks.
Lincoln, United States
Edvard says: This was a fascinating exploration of perhaps the most fascinating president the US has had to date.
The Dictator, United States
Edvard says: This was a fascinating exploration of perhaps the most fascinating admiral general Wadiya has had to date. We particularly enjoyed the documentary from which Adm Gen Aladeen learned about rocketry: “Did this documentary, by any chance, feature a duck whose bill was twisted around to the back of his head?”
Total Recall, United States
Edvard says: Previously, we identified the worst film of the year. But we feel it is no longer fair to do that, since we didn’t see most of the films that were panned by critics. So instead we will credit the film that has the least reason to exist: the remake of Total Recall. We agree that the original version of 1990 was not that close to the original short story, “We Can Remember It For You Wholesale” by Philip K Dick, and we agree that this version was something of an improvement; we just disagree that this is reason enough for a remake.
Serious discussion of gun control, United States
Amber Lynn says: If there is anything good about the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, it is that it has finally caused people in the United States to think seriously about whether or not any random person should be allowed to own military grade assault rifles and semiautomatic weapons. Not everyone is thinking seriously about that, but still.
Endless arguments over who built what, United States
Amber Lynn says: For nearly two months, the US presidential campaign concentrated on a speech by US president Barack Obama, in which he said that the successes of private enterprise would not be possible without the infrastructure [education, roads, electricity] that the government provides. Instead of turning this into an opportunity to have a serious discussion about what role the government should play in modern society – which actually was a substantive difference between the two candidates – the campaign of Gov Mitt Romney intentionally mischaracterised Pres Obama’s speech, the Obama campaign intentionally mischaracterised Gov Romney’s response, and the whole thing degenerated into a farcical scene at the Republican National Convention, in which attendees repeatedly chanted “We built that!” even when they themselves did not build the thing under discussion.
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