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    Dave Barry’s class-clown humor doesn’t always do it for me, but his year-in-review column always has a few passages that make you laugh out loud. I think this is my favorite part for 2007:

    Abroad, the six-party talks in Beijing conclude on an optimistic note as North Korea’s leader, Insane Lunatic Liar Il, announces that his country will dismantle its nuclear-weapons program just as soon as it receives the nuclear dismantler that it ordered on eBay. All six parties agree that this sounds reasonable; they resume partying. On a more ominous nuclear note, President Bush warns Iran that it is, quote, “awfully close to Iraq, if you look at a map, which I have.” In another increasingly tense international arena, the U.N. Security Council sends 1,000 peacekeeping troops to New York City in an effort to quell Rosie O’Donnell, who repels them by shouting.

    But the big news in February is the death and subsequent wacky adventures of Anna Nicole Smith, whose body remains in a refrigerator in the Broward County medical examiner’s office while her infant child is embroiled in a paternity dispute that eventually comes to involve pretty much every adult male resident of the United States except Richard Simmons. The news media cover this story with their usual taste and restraint, keeping the public informed of important developments via such journalistic innovations as the Refrigerator Cam; Greta Van Susteren jets to Aruba in case there is a Natalee Holloway link. The dramatic finale takes place in a Florida courtroom presided over by Judge Weeping Twit, who, in a display of Solomonic wisdom, rules that everyone involved will get a TV show.

    Scary how much of an improvement over reality that would actually have been, huh?

    Happy New Year, everyone.

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