If the Mayans are correct, 2012 is the year we all go ‘POOF’ into a dark, infinite apocalypse. Some may say we are there at least figuratively already: a repeat of the 2007/2008 financial meltdown effectively turned the middle class into the (non) working poor; fallen dictators, those who survived, became the new middle class, and Liberals across Canada awoke May 3rd with barely enough elected members to make quorum in caucus.
2011 was a year of quakes, shakes, upheavals – highbrow and lowbrow news that zinged around the world as fast as people could press ‘re-tweet’. Luminaries were lost: Memories of Christopher Hitchens and Vaclav Havel faded in the haze of despair with the news, just under the year end wire, that Katy Perry and Russell Brand are no longer Hollywood’s golden couple.
With the past 12 months seemingly rife with daily misadventures, what will 2012 bring?
1: SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act): The US Congress really hates pirates. After a mass public movement kills any hope of passing legislation against domestic online piracy, lawmakers simply change the name of the Bill to ‘Somalia Offshore Piracy Action’. AK-47 toting ship thieves can now be legally hanged for copyright infringement.
2: Cats will again dominate video: Despite 35 hours of compelling, informative and culturally significant video uploaded to YouTube every minute, 8 of the top ten online videos of 2012 will be about cats. Snoring cats, felines chasing radio controlled cars operated by stoned teenagers, cats rescuing firefighters stuck in trees, cats smoking bongs and chasing teenagers with radio controlled cars, cats shitting in toilets and flushing…you get the point. The only two non-cat related top ten videos are of Katy Perry without her wedding ring, and twenty minutes of Rick Perry playing pocket pool behind his lectern during the final GOP Leadership debate. (He wins, the debate)
3: GST/HST a matter of dialect: After soundly denouncing the British Columbia Harmonized Sales Tax in a 2011 referendum, citizens believe a return to GST/PST is simply a matter of time. Not so – scrambling to re-instate the tax, new BC Finance Minister Dean Fortin realizes former premier, and anti-HST campaigner Bill Vander Zalm, was in essence, the solution. In the Dutch language, ‘G’s are pronounced as an ‘H’; by publishing all finance and tax policy in Dutch the two taxes will be linguistically combined!
4: City of Victoria: Long serving city councillor Pam Madoff announces in July she will resign to realize a life-long dream of becoming a heritage building. Facing huge infrastructure costs for a new recreation centre and fire hall, along with operational financial shortfalls, council declares a by-election and referendum for November. As a cost saving measure, Victoria voters are asked to approve a single, combined building – fire station, library, pool, nuclear power station and sewage treatment plant, or accept a 4000% property tax increase. Residents reject both and move en mass to Saanich, where Mayor Frank Leonard declares a state of emergency (on Twitter) and asks for immediate assistance from the UNHCR (also, via Twitter). When asked why he didn’t phone for assistance, the Saanich Mayor replied ‘are you kidding? Prime Minister’s office phone support is a 2 hour wait. On Twitter it’s immediate’
5: Personal Art: Hipsters declare QR code tattoos ‘so passé‘. The 2012 trend for skin ink are # tags – #Momma, #I’mWithStupid, and the ever popular #♥. Twitter wins the # trademark and immediately sues 15 million for copyright violation and lifetime royalties; admitting ‘this is really the only way we can make money‘.
6: EU: Realizing that centuries of diplomacy and two ruinous world wars failed to gain domination, Germany says “schraube dieser“, takes advantage of the financial crisis, and simply buys Europe. Nothing really changes except state dinners, where the menus are heavy on schnitzel and Riesling wine; and Paris is renamed Merkelville.
7: RIM: Canada nationalizes Research in Motion with Prime Minister Harper justifying the move as ‘the only way I can have private conversations with Peter Mackay when he is in a helicopter‘. Rioters worldwide rejoice.
8: BC Ferries: 30 major dock crashes, 2 sinkings and the Queen of Coquitlam arriving in Honolulu instead of Swartz Bay (to the delight of passengers) – new BC Ferry Chairman Gregor Robertson admits hiring Thai tuk-tuk drivers to replace experienced captains as a cost saving measure, saying ‘hey, if they can navigate Bangkok floods, surely Active Pass ain’t a problem. Enjoy our new yoghurt bar!‘. To increase revenue, passengers and vehicles are charged per kilo – reducing American tourism to Vancouver Island to zilch, not only for the weight factor, but US version Blackberry conversion App is faulty (Imperial gallons to fat ratio qualified in terms of US debt level and Canadian $, combined with GIS sends most travellers to Victoria. Virginia).
9: Social Media/News: Journalists worldwide collectively raise hands and surrender to citizen media, admitting ‘for each credible, authoritative and balanced report we generate there are 5 million anecdotal, biased blogs/videos/Facebook updates and Tweets: we can’t compete‘. Every major news organization simply becomes a Twitter timeline. (and is subsequently sued by Twitter for copyright infringement)
10: Fiction/Books: After lengthy meetings with her bank manager (the EU emergency bailout fund), author J.K. Rowling realizes she cannot justify buying Belgium without publishing another book. Taking a cue from Star Wars, she goes back in time and announces: ‘Harry Potter: The Magic Diaper Diaries‘ (4 part series). To appease anti-witch, religious zealots: in chapter two, Harry is simultaneously circumcised, baptised, entered into the order of Masons, and adopted by the Taliban. Chapter three, with Harry and Hermione, as toddlers playing ‘doctor’ to heal his abused ‘wand’, becomes the 2012 online meme. Pre-sales rocket, with 30 year olds lining up in front of theaters two years in advance of the movie release.
11: US Politics: Tea Party collectively surrender when Michele Bachmann is revealed to be both a male cross dresser, and gay. While they commiserate over coffee, Mitt Romney renounces Mormonism, joins the Rastifarians, and proposes the immediate legalization of marijuana, taxation of said product to solve the US debt crisis, and re-tasking of the Keystone pipeline to pump hash oil from British Columbia directly to Washington DC ‘where it is needed most‘. In a counter move, Obama joins the Mormons in order to ‘regain the center of US politics‘.
12: The Mayans are right…
Wishing all readers a Happy 2012!!