Speaking of lists. Which we are, because at this time of year there’s a list for everything.
Humans have a fondness for lists at any time, but we really ramp things up come the New Year.
Top news stories of 2013 (Ajax undoubtedly tops the charts in these parts). Most popular baby names (Ethan or Liam for boys, Olivia or Sophia for girls, depending who’s compiling the list). Most annoying 911 calls. Best movies. Best-dressed man (Pope Francis, says Esquire magazine). Best-selling books. Trendiest foods.
Besides lists of the best are those of the year’s worst, which are often more interesting.
For example, the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actor/Actress. Surely, if the Razzies included a Lifetime Achievement Award For Unbelievably Bad Acting, it would go to Bo Derek. If you don’t believe me, find a VHS of Tarzan, The Ape Man from 1981.
And there are Just Plain Stupid Baby Names (my terminology, but such lists do exist).
Somebody named their daughter Pepsi. Then there’s Summer-Ray, Pinky and Tea. My only question is, why not Peppsie, Summerae, Pynkey and Teeye?
The best lists usually include 10 things. Among my personal favourites are Top 10 Foreign Phrases Misused by People Trying to be Erudite, and the Top 10 Celebrities Who Took Selfies and Got Fewer than 100 Likes on Facebook.
I have no idea what or who is on either of those last two lists because I can’t find them, but I like the fact they exist. Sometimes just having a list is more important than what’s on it.
I know they’re real, though, because they’re on the Seattle-Post Intelligencer’s Top 10 ‘Top 10 Lists of 2013’ List of 2013. And yes, you read that right.
I can’t match such genius, but organizing another of our favourite New Year’s pastimes — making predictions — into a list might be kind of interesting.
If there was an Armchair Mayor’s Top Ten Predictions for 2014 List, I’m almost certain it would include the following:
10. Rob Ford will apologize for something.
9. After the civic election, not one winning candidate will refuse to take the pay increase voted in by the 2013 council.
8. Somewhere, a pitbull owner will be quoted as saying, “He’s never done anything like that before. He’s a wonderful family dog.”
7. The owner of an assault rifle will say, “If everybody had a gun, we’d all be safer.”
6. KGHM International will hold a public-information meeting on the proposed Ajax mine. The location may or may not be announced.
5. Supermarkets will start selling beer and wine. The world will not end.
4. A senior will say, “I want more exercise. I can’t wait for community mailboxes.”
3. A study done by a professor at an obscure community college in the U.S. will conclude that donuts are better for us than kale.
2. Someone trying to pay for parking in downtown Kamloops will start muttering, “The horror, the horror,” flapping his or her arms, throwing credit cards and coins into the air, and will be placed in a van by men in white coats and taken away.
1. Clover the Kermode bear will wake up at the B.C. Wildlife Park, look around, and decide it’s smarter to go back to sleep for the rest of the year.
Welcome to 2014. Enjoy.