Culture

In Case You Missed It: 2012 In Review

BEN KOLDYKE, AMAURY NOLASCO

Each week within In Case You Missed It, Mike Haverty takes a closer look at the news you missed or chose to ignore.

This is my 26th In Case You Missed It. Dom gave me the reins at the dawn of 2012. Half of the weeks of the year ain’t so bad. I can still remember my first article. I wrote about Work It!, which was a sitcom once. But it was more than a sitcom. It! was an example of everything hacky and terrible with television. ABC gambled on a show founded on recycled, outdated cross-dressing tropes because someone thought “maybe this is what the world needs.” In spite of, or because of, both of these facts, it’s an important show. Just as important as Kony 2012.

Kony 2012 actually happened. The flashy worldwide debut of a political movement was made irrelevant within a week of its debut. The spring, I recall. The head organizer of Kony 2012 filmed his son saying Kony was worse than Darth Vader, and we still don’t know enough to argue otherwise. Not too long after this, a video of kids deriding a bus monitor netted said bus monitor an absolutely ridiculous amount of money. These stories are important.

Everyone had guns and they all shot everybody. This is important.

Nothing was important when I was writing. I hated all of these events. Straight out hated that “farewell intercourse” was a phrase. Hated myself for being a person who wanted to make fun of Tila Tequila for having brain damage. I’ve started to let ICYMI slip as other, more primal concerns (like making money) sprawled across the acres of my mental real estate. Now, sitting down to write again, I can fully blame my deflection of writing articles on exhaustion. Not “run around naked and play pattycake with the concrete” exhaustion or “it’s totally drugs” exhaustion, but a loss of focus. How do you write about the news when “news” is either too serious or too silly, too challenging or too easy?

In 2013, there will be more actions to prevent gun violence. We’ll figure out how legalized pot works. Transgender issues and the phrase “rape culture” will receive airtime. The legalization of gay marriage will become more pervasive. Drones. We will tune into Here Comes Honey Boo-Boo just in time to see the slow-motion train crawl across a bridge while the camera fixates on a bolt holding a set of wheels in place for the next 8-11 years, tops. An internet celebrity will appear in a movie that’s released five months after the internet is over them. Breaking Bad will be done. All inevitable.

Save for natural disasters, everything that happened this year has been willed into existence by people. It’s rather simple: people find importance in each other, and therefore, want to be liked by other people. There’s nothing wrong with being well-liked and respected, but trying too hard to be liked creates odd and unintended byproducts. Sometimes it’s creating a show where men dress up as women to get jobs, sometimes it’s a shooting in Times Square. Sometimes it’s as transparent as this.

And most of the time it’s overkill like this.

But this isn’t BuzzFeed, and now that you’re overstimulated by pictures and captions, I’ll be short: Everyone got to where they are. They might be monsters. They’re often just annoying. They’re usually horribly misguided, but their faults could have been yours. In the modern mythology that news and internet media builds, they are demi-gods for a year. We are routinely presented proof that there are glorious life-changing consequences that we dread every day. See how the others are faring. They are important.