Here it comes. 'Start your diet.' 'Drop the holiday pounds in the new year.' Does everyone really lose all sense of control at the end of the year when it comes to indulgences? Or does it happen all year with many things? A new year and a time to reflect. There is debate as to whether this year, 2010, is the first year of a new decade or the last year of a decade gone by. Either way, time is moving forward but pause a moment to look back and take stock of lessons learned. Did you discover a new author, find a great vacation destination or master a new recipe? What will you remember about '09? Let's review all that was surprising, not so surprising, ridiculous and creepy about the last calendar year.
10. Ex senator John Edwards taught us that if your wife is terminally ill and there is a woman that you supposedly had an affair with who has a child who looks exactly like you it is probably best to admit paternity sooner rather than later. The pro bono lawyer turned out to be a snake oil salesman in disguise. Maybe his scorned wife could heal the family and move on by practicing 'resilience' instead of making it the title of her new book and hitting the talk show circuit.
9. Thank you to former governor Eliot Spitzer for introducing the world to Ashley Dupre. Those of us who don't know how to keep our husbands happy now have her 'advice' column in The New York Post to turn to for guidance. We finally have all the answers to our burning questions on relationship bliss, from the always helpful call girl perspective, now that Robert Murdoch's newest employee is on the beat.
8. Ex Governor Rob Blagojevich showed us that if you keep stating something as a belief long enough you may be able to make it become true. Or not. And if your credibility is still on shaky ground it is a good idea to try and get on a reality television show like 'I am a celebrity.....get me out of here.' When a federal judge informs you that you can't leave the country to participate it's always handy to have one of those supportive political spouses to take your place.
7. Senator John Ensign of Nevada demonstrated that if you have an affair with your best friend's wife, both of whom work for you, it is perfectly acceptable to continue to pursue her after the friend confronts you. And confronts you again. No, really you have to stop now.
6. South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford's 'soul mate' was in a more geographically desirable locale in order to hide all the way in Argentina. When the relationship was exposed he apologized in a speech where he states "I am sorry for hurting her, my children and my wife." The mistress should never have top billing in the heartfelt statement to your constituents. Did he run that past anybody before making a public apology?
5. Bernie Madoff showed us what a human being looks like who has no moral compass whatsoever. When he wasn't cheating little old ladies and entire families out of their life savings he was cheating in the old fashioned sense of the word on his wife.
4. David Letterman found out what it was like to become the one on the receiving end of late night jokes in regard to your personal life. What could it have been like to be a woman in that working environment if you weren't one of the many women involved with him? How was it that he was praised for having 'class' for addressing the issue so quickly?
3. Michael Jackson's sad, strange life came to an end at the hands of a doctor who administered powerful narcotics for the star to get some sleep. A stunning example of having enough money and no one to say no to you, ever.
2. We learned a new term this year. 'Octomom.' All the people out there who are struggling to finance the birth of one child, whose insurance doesn't cover the costly procedures, collectively thank this delusional woman and reckless doctor. Do the math. 1 seemingly unstable, unemployed, single mother + 1 irresponsible 'doctor' + 6 children + eight babies = millions of people who may never have insurance companies start to defray the cost of the dream of having a child.
1. You can hear the sponsors closing their doors and pulling the plugs all around us. 2010 is the year that we found out that Mrs. Tiger Woods wields a mean golf club herself. Be careful who your kids' role models are. Did you think that the name Tiger Woods would be synonymous with a bevy of porn stars at the start of 2009? Well, it sure is now.
Drink a cup of kindness to days of auld lang syne!