Who needs realistic predictions for 2013 when Steve Almond has brewed up such an imaginative batch of possibilities? Fireworks explode over Lake Michigan in Chicago on Sunday, Jan. 1, 2012. (Nam Y. Huh/AP)
Every December, a bunch of experts march out a bunch of predictions for the new year, very few of which ever come true. That part doesn’t bother me; it’s just an inherent part of the Year-End Prediction Racket.
What bugs me is that these so-called “experts” always treat their predictions as empirical forecasts rather than incredibly biased guesses that are often also self-serving. You will find no such pretense in the list below, which uses as its central guiding algorithm my own cranky desires.
1. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia Chokes on a Panini
To be clear: Scalia will not die, nor do I wish him to. He will simply choke on a panini, as a result of his pattern of “stress eating.” The momentary panic of asphyxiation will cause him to abandon his charged role as the court’s most vociferous and hypocritical ideologue to pursue a career as a lounge singer in an Italian restaurant on the Providence waterfront. He and Tony Bennett will record an album of cheeky covers together under the name The Originalists.
2. Tom Brady Breaks His Nose While Leading the Patriots to Another Title
Avenging a bitter loss to the San Francisco 49ers, the Pats will dominate Superbowl XLVII in New Orleans. The win will be marked by a freak accident in which tight end Rob Gronkowski celebrates a touchdown catch by spiking the ball so hard that it breaks Tom Brady’s nose. His previously flawless face is thus rendered human.
3. Botched Surgery Leaves Kim Kardashian Without her Most-Famous Asset
Turning to glutial reduction surgery as a means of fitting into her new line of skinny jeans, Kimz, reality TV show star Kardashian will be traumatized to discover her entire posterior has been removed.
4. The Koch Brothers Go Vegan
Shocking the world of ruthless meat-eating industrialists, Charles and David Koch, the owners of petrochemical giant Koch Industries and prominent contributors to right-wing PACs, will announce their conversion to a plant-based diet. The brothers will release a statement citing the documentary “Forks Over Knives,” as well as countless longevity studies. “We hope to live for as long as possible,” the statement will conclude, “so we can continue defend the interests of otherwise helpless, multi-national corporations against President Obama’s socialist agenda.”
5. Public Smart Phone Usage Plummets Thanks to a New Device
Some brave, foolish tech genius will get tired of seeing people staring into their phones at every single bar, restaurant, subway station, gallery, theater, party, and wedding, and will invent a small concealed device that, when activated, detects the use of smart phones in a given public space and broadcasts a helpful message such as, Hey screen zombie, guess what? There are other humans in this room. Why don’t you try talking to them?
6. Sheriff Joe Arpaio Comes Out of the Closet
Stunning not only his constituents, but his wife and children, Maricopa County’s famously macho law enforcement honcho will be forced to resign after computer records reveal his on-line addiction to gay porn, and specifically the site BrownBearsMating.com.
7. New Footage Will Force Birthers to Shut Up
A birth video taken inside a Honolulu hospital and unearthed in the Obama family archive will show the future president emerging from his mother’s body and being swaddled in an American flag while the Star-Spangled Banner plays in the background.
8. Assault Rifles Replaced By Dull Wooden Spoons
Using an obscure parliamentary procedure, Nancy Pelosi will push a bill through the House that bans all civilian ownership of assault rifles and replaces them with dull wooden spoons.
9. Donald Trump’s Rug Will Fall Off During a “Fox & Friends” Interview
Clearly disoriented, co-host Brian Kilmeade will pull out a dull spoon and attempt to shoot the offending toupee.
10. Small Infant Found Inside One of Mitch McConnell’s Cheek Pouches
Okay, folks, this one’s just a hunch. But it’s a strong hunch.
The views and opinions expressed in this piece are solely those of the writer and do not in any way reflect the views of WBUR management or its employees.