Man, there sure were a lot of stupid stories in 2010 that everyone cared about. This isn't a new phenomenon. Every year there are seemingly small events that get blown up into mammoth news beasts that the mainstream media, tabloids, bloggers and your mom all obsess over.
Despite their insignificance, these stories can't help but become significant. By "significant," we mean that the sheer magnitude of coverage forces people to pay attention, even when they know better (Yes, we're guilty too). Now, with only 3.5 days left in 2010, we're ready to revisit the stupidest, most trivial stories from this year that supposedly mattered. Come along.
1. Megan Fox has a thumb double
How it played out: Back in February, Megan Fox appeared in a Super Bowl ad for Motorola, in which two things happened: 1) She was naked in a tub. 2) A close-up of her hands showed a thumb that belongs to a hand model. This, to some, was a controversy.
The bottom line: Megan Fox has clubbed thumbs, but does anyone really care about Megan Fox's thumbs?
2. Vice President Biden drops an F bomb
How it played out: Vice President Biden introduced President Obama after he signed a health care reform bill earlier this year and then whispered to the Pres, "This is a big f****n' deal." The microphone was still on. CNN and some major news outlets got their panties in a bunch.
The bottom line: The Vice President uses f****n' expletives when he gets excited. Surprised? And anyway, that bill WAS a big effing deal.
3. Lady Gaga gets drunk at a Mets game and flips the bird
How it played out: When Lady Gaga was back in New York for her sister's high school graduation, she dropped by Citi Field to see a Mets game and, tired of getting snapped by photographers, decided to flip the bird. Not a flattering look, but also not a big deal.
The bottom line: Lady Gaga has been a lot more shocking than this. And if people really want to be offended by something at a Mets game, how about the Mets?
4. Lindsay Lohan has a message on her fingernails
How it played out: At Lindsay's probation violation hearing in July, she had the words "f*** you" scrawled on her middle finger. The cameras caught it, of course, and the note on her digit became a big deal.
The bottom line: A young, self-destructive woman--gasp!--did something stupid before heading to jail. It's about as predictable as the sun rising.
5. Mel Gibson's taped outbursts leak
How it played out: Last July some hate-filled and totally racist voice-mail messages that Mel Gibson left for his ex-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva leaked. Mainstream outlets covered the incident like it was the moon landing, and TMZ has become the unofficial Mel/Oksana blog. The incident has turned Gibson into even more of a pariah than he already was.
The bottom line: Mel Gibson is a deranged lunatic...but we already knew this. Only now, there's a Mel Gibson soundboard available for public consumption so people can terrify their friends from the comfort of home. That's about the most important thing to come out of this.
6. Brett Favre sends X-rated text messages and photos to a pretty young lady
How it played out: Favre actually sent the offending texts and photos way back in 2008. But Deadspin reported on them this year, and because the exchange involves Brett Fav-rah, neither mainstream outlets nor the NFL could ignore or resist it.
The bottom line: Sir Charles Barkley has said all that needs to be said on this subject: "If you send a woman a picture of your junk, it should be humongous, it shouldn't be small. That's one of the Ten Commandments."
7. Katy Perry's breasts get censored by "Sesame Street"
How it played out: Back in September, Katy Perry filmed a video with Elmo, in which she riffed on her own song and displayed her boobs like they were a church nativity scene, which is pretty common for Katy. We explained at that time that "Sesame Street" jerked Katy Perry off the air as a result of the boobage and then the Sesame Workshop got involved and it became a big, hairy, Snuffleupagus-size mess.
The bottom line: If Katy Perry appears on any show, there's about a 100% chance that she'll wear a low-cut top and another 100% chance that she'll look great. Plus, they're just boobs. Kids love boobs!
8. Tom Brady's grown out his hair and now he might be losing it
How it played out: "The weird fascination with Tom Brady's hair continues," Boston.com wrote a month ago. First the story was that Brady did his hair like Justin Bieber due to pressure from his bombshell wife Gisele, then the focus shifted to the correlation between Brady's hair and his on-field performance, and now, the story goes, Brady might be losing his hair.
The bottom line: Often, men succumb to the desires of their spouses. Also, they go bald. Not a big deal.
9. Miley Cyrus hits a bong
How it played out: Miley Cyrus, formerly Hannah Montana and now 18 years old, was photographed recently using a tobacco smoking device, also known as a bong. As is the case any time Miley Cyrus does something considered unbecoming of a former child star, parents got angry. Not her own parent, Billy Ray--he just got sad--but other parents. To her credit, Miley didn't seem to care about the controversy.
The bottom line: Miley's an adult. Salvia is legal. No one cares.