2016 has been a year to remember...
AND we're back ... part two of the 2016 roundup.
July: A petty thief named Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel drove a truck into hordes of families celebrating Bastille Day in Nice, France, killing 86 people in an act of terrorism. Millions of law-abiding non-radical Muslims the world over face-palmed themselves in disbelief at yet another religious nut trying hard to ruin their lives.
August: The Games of the XXXI Olympiad (that's 31 for all those who didn't pay attention in school) went ahead in Rio despite dire predictions of a Zika pandemic thanks to the busy Brazilian mozzies. In what must have been an immense surprise for him, a mugger was shot dead by his intended victim during a smash and grab attack on a car in the opening days of the Games. The shooter, who was identified as working at the Russian Embassy and a Jiu Jitsu expert, dispatched the baddie with the mugger's own gun.
The man who made the world happy, Gene Wilder, died from complications arising from Alzheimer's disease. Nobody was laughing.
September: Sam Dastyari, the first politician of Iranian origin to sit in an Australian parliament, was forced to resign after he allowed Chinese companies to pay his travel bills. How or why Mr Dastyari thought that was acceptable has never been explained, by him or anyone else.
October: Americans broke the Internet by searching the word Aleppo during the second Presidential debate; the vast majority of them got it wrong, however. Famous for their insular outlook on world news (if it ain't happening in the good ol' US of A, they don't know about it), Yanks everywhere looked up "lepo”, believing the candidates were saying "a lepo” and they all wanted to know what it was. Makes it easier to understand why they went ahead and voted in Donald Trump as President.
New Ambassador to the US, Joe Hockey, billed Australian taxpayers thousands of dollars in babysitting fees. To be fair, Smokin' Joe, who advised struggling Australians to just get a better job when he was the Federal Treasurer, went right ahead and followed his own advice.
November: The US elected Donald Trump as President. Words fail me.
December: Wayne Duncan, bassist for the legendary Aussie band Daddy Cool, died after suffering a stroke. Daddy who? Daddy Cool.
"Odious” pollie Eddie Obeid finally got his comeuppance and disappeared for a stint inside the Big House after being found guilty of corruption. The big question on everyone's lips was how did he stay out for so long? Fast Eddie was doing the legal quickstep for more years than all of us can remember. I know schadenfreude - taking pleasure in another's misfortune - is nasty, but, well, it's Eddie Obeid...
Happy New Year, please don't drink and drive.