It was, to my slippery and wayward mind, one of the wonkiest, wobbliest, most sputteringly interesting years in ages, full of sound and fury and shrill, insufferable conservatism signifying nothing, but in a way that makes it seem like, you know, everything.
Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens was killed in a plane crash. Dick Cheney still refused to die from another heart attack. A leathery hunk of confused hate named Terry Jones didn't burn the Koran outside a rancid little "church" somewhere in Florida, but not before he got the attention of the president himself, which is bizarre and disorienting in a way that makes you sort of cringe. And then shrug, sigh and move the hell on.
We have a name for this whipsaw socioemotional glop in journalism. It's the same one they use in fiction, in poetry, in TV, in skywriting and greeting cards, call-in radio and cave paintings, Facebook status updates and homoerotic text messages sent from Gucci-clad Atlanta pastors to young boys in heat.
We call it storytelling.
[...] Still, pan far enough out, it's all just a spectacularly vain extravaganza. Just ask the graveyard.
Much, much more. Do not deny yourself. Go read.