Here are the Top Ten GENERIC News Stories for 2011. Although this is a repost from 2010, for some reason, it continues to work.
1) A drunk (and/or high) celebrity had a meltdown, this year, outside his home (in a nightclub, on an airplane). Onlookers were shocked (not at all surprised) to hear the beloved movie star (TV actor, reality show contestant, presidential candidate), screaming curses and tossing racial slurs (shoes, angry birds) at his wife (girl friend, a male prostitute). Spokesperson for the celebrity said that the cause of the incident stemmed from a dosage problems the star was having with his medication. The celebrity has since checked into a rehab center and is in the processes of a complete lifestyle overhaul.
2) A Washington think-tank estimated that countless hours of productivity were lost this year, as millions tuned in to observe the sporting event (trial, political demonstrations, presidential debate) of the century. Many watched at their offices but even more merely stayed home from work, as the playoffs (jury selection, police response) dragged on for weeks. The victory (verdict, presidential primary, coup d’etat) turned out to be unprecedented. Cities experienced rioting for months afterwards.
3) The country was riveted as a boy (miners, dog, squirrel) was successfully rescued from a well (frozen lake, mineshaft, hot air balloon). Rescuers toiled with shovels (ropes, skyhooks, miniature surgical equipment) around the clock, as time was quickly running out. Everyone cheered as the boy (miners, small animal) was pulled up (lowered down) to safety. He (she, they, it) thanked God for being rescued.
4) A terrible natural disaster in Japan, (the Philippines, Haiti, New Orleans) forced emergency response teams to rethink their disaster preparedness plans. This well-meaning concern quickly passes though, as the 24 hour news cycle redirected our attention to the newest movie (presidential primary, celebrity meltdown, shiny object).
5) As the war in Afghanistan (Iraqi, Vietnam, Korea) drags on, president Obama (Nixon, Kennedy) vowed to bring all the troops home in about 18 months. Critics of the President complained that announcing a time tables for withdrawal merely emboldens our enemies, while supporters of the President complained that the withdrawal is not soon enough.
6) Scientist announce a breakthrough in genetics (nanotechnology, super conductors) giving us new insights into how the universe (magnets) work. Although scientists caution that any practical application of this technology is still months (years, decades) away, news media reports this new technology could eventually lead to a cancer cure (free energy, invisibility cloak).
7) The economy was one of the top stories of the year, as the recession (recovery) was slower (faster) than expected. As Liberals called for more spending in new industries, Conservatives called for lower taxes and increased military spending, as the only way to speed the recovery (slow the overheated economy, compete in a new global economy, fight worldwide tooth decay).
8) Something horrible happened in the Middle East. Many people died.
9) The nation split down party lines as newest controversy involving immigration (gay rights, daylight savings time). Conservatives balked at the new ideas, which they consider to be blatantly anti- family (anti-Christian, anti-free market, anti-hunting,). Liberals failed to clearly present their side of the issue, choosing instead to label conservatives as reactionaries. Both sides failed to realize that ten years from now. everyone will whole hardily accept the new idea as one of the key foundations of American values.
10) We killed Osama Bin Laden. Wow, that one really was unexpected!