The 5 Things in Pop Culture That Surprised Me Most About 2010

10 Jan

5. Ron Artest Wins a Championship Ring

I am not surprised that he sold said ring. That’s just typical Ron. But the fact that he sold it for charity, maintains a loving relationship with his family and won an NBA Championship is mind-blowing.  This is the same guy who went into a crowd and punched a fan. The same guy who has been a cancer on every other team for which he’s played.

Let’s play a game. Identify the real Ron Artest quote:

  1. “This guy comes in and says I was hot dogging it out there. What does that even mean? Do I look like a Nathan’s? Am I eaten by Kobayashi? Haha, Kobayashi, good man. I don’t know how we got on that subject.”
  2. “I grew up when Pluto was a planet. Now, I’m 25, I turn around and Pluto’s no longer a planet. I’m going to elbow that guy in the nose. I love Pluto. Everybody loves Pluto. There’s a dog named Pluto in the cartoons. I don’t know how we got on that subject.”
  3. “I love tweeting. Not the twitter thing. I just like making bird noises. [Artest makes bird noise].  Big Bird was my role model growing up. You think there’s a real Sesame Street? I sure hope there is. I don’t know how we got on that subject.”

For all you contestants at home, the answer was number 2. To my knowledge, he hasn’t said 1 or 3… yet. Yeah, this is the same guy who won a championship.

4. The Success of the iPad

I laughed when I saw the iPad come out. Really Steve Jobs? This is going to be profitable? This summed up my feelings at the time, but with higher quality wit.

Then Apple promptly sold 10 million iPads in less than 9 months – which is more than the iPhone sold in its inaugural 9 months. I have made poor estimations in my life. In fifth grade, I was sure JNCO’s would still be in style in 2010 (which explains a lot about my wardrobe. But come on, tell me you didn’t buy into this campaign: “Since 1991, JNCO has delivered the hippest denim jeans and phat styles to satisfy the demands of even the most hardcore hip-hop, skater, and other music oriented sub-cultures”). But I was never more flat-out wrong about a product than the iPad. Steve Jobs, you win. I will never question you again.

3. The Deaths of Leslie Nielsen and Gary Coleman

Mostly because I had absolutely no clue how old they were and vaguely thought both of them were already dead. My last Nielsen sighting: Wrongfully Accused. My last Coleman sighting: Star Dates (Skip to 5:45 for some serious awkwardness).

2. Sandra Bullock Wins Oscar for Best Actress

This is far more unsettling than Ron Artest’s championship. I mean, Ron Ron didn’t win any awards and was probably the fourth best player on his team. It was at least feasible.

But Bullock winning an Academy Award simply does not compute. In 2009, if you had told Sandra she would win an Oscar in 2010, she would have laughed. A few of her most famous films: Speed, Speed 2: Cruise Control, 28 Days, Miss Congeniality, Murder By Numbers, Two Weeks Notice, Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous, The Lake House, Premonition, and The Proposal. And it wasn’t like she held minor parts in any of these films; these were movies where she was the lead actress in the prime of her career. A few remarkable things about this list:

  1. I am no expert in addition, but I’m pretty sure the collective sum of these movies is 88% on Rotten Tomatoes, and 77% of that came from Speed.
  2. It contains two of the best names of sequels ever. The only sequel name that surpasses them is The Curse of the Cat People, which of course, is the sequel to Cat People.
  3. I’m pretty sure Premonition solely consists of outtakes from The Lake House.

Writer’s admission: I have not seen The Blind Side, nor do I plan on seeing it. I much prefer living in a world where the Academy randomly chooses winners and where there still exists a possibility that one day Nic Cage will hoist an Oscar over his head and declare, “NOT THE BEES, NOT THE BEES, NOT THE BEES!!” Oh wait, that happened already. At least the Oscar part.

1. Insane Clown Posse Makes Valid Argument

If you haven’t seen “Miracles” by Insane Clown Posse, do yourself a favor and watch it now.

Yes, my first view was simultaneously terrifying, confusing and arousing. But if you get beyond the ridiculousness, Insane Clown Posse makes some very sound points. Like Insane Clown Posse, I often ponder how magnets work, but doubt that any scientific explanation for this phenomenon exists. On a grander scale, Insane Clown Posse speaks to man’s common experience, like trying to feed a fish to a pelican in San Francisco, only to have the pelican try to eat your cell phone and then run away. Ladies and gentlemen, Insane Clown Posse: 2010’s Socrates.

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