It’s that time of year (end) again when all media outlets publish their “best of…” lists. But instead of looking back at a bunch of stuff you already knew – and let’s face it, are any of you really clamoring to remember 2021? – how about taking a look at the stories we at MMW News Service picked up on that the big guys didn’t.
We proudly present the most overlooked stories of the year:
1. Man refuses to change unfortunate surname
For much of his life, his name was only an issue because it was somewhat hard to spell. But recently, Carmel, Indiana’s Larry Omicron has been getting a lot of grief. “Every day someone sends me a story ‘Omicron sweeps the nation’, ‘How to protect again Omicron’. It was funny for, like, a minute.”
The 52-year-old insurance adjuster remains steadfast in refusing to change his problematic moniker.
“My daddy was an Omicron, my granddaddy was an Omicron, my great grandaddy was an Omicron, and my great-great grandaddy…well, he was listed as ‘Unclaimed Irish Boy 6’ because he lost his papers at Ellis Island, but I’m pretty sure he was an Omircon, too.”
Larry’s wife, June, bowed to the pressure and decided to take back her maiden name – Anthrax.
2. Woman holds breath, wins election
Controversy surrounded the mayoral election in Ord, Nebraska. Initial results showed that incumbent Mitch Miller and challenger Debbie Lopez tied with each earning 373 votes. The county’s canvassing board, though, discovered a write-in ballot cast for “that nice young man from the Casey’s” and Miller claimed that was clearly a reference to him – the only man in the race. Lopez disputed that notion, citing Miller’s age, 48, and noting that he did not work at the Casey’s. Miller responded that he was, though, a frequent customer. A district judge later ruled that the ballot was too ambiguous and ordered that the city employ its tiebreaking procedure – a holding-your-breath contest. The quirky law was passed by the town council in 1947 as an homage to the oft-repeated phrase “gotta learn to hold your breath to live here”, a reference to the state’s roadkill carcass disposal site at the edge of town. On Nov. 27, Miller tried his best but exhaled after just nine seconds. Lopez, though, held her breath for a full minute to become Ord’s first female mayor. She died the next day.
3. Peter Jackson to re-release documentary about Mr. Mister
Hoping to follow up on the success of “Get Back” – a restored and re-released documentary about the Beatles’ final days – director Peter Jackson has signed on to produce a film about the final tour of legendary pop band Mr. Mister. The footage, originally released direct to video, captures the hitmakers struggles with the massive and unprecedented success that came with being in the iconic foursome.
“You just say their names – Richard, Steve, Pat, and the other Steve – and immediately everyone knows who you are talking about,” Jackson said. “And those songs. Who can forget ‘Broken Wings’, ‘Kyrie’, and…you know, the rest of them.”
Jackson promises to restore the original nine hours of footage, which was shortened to 20 minutes and often aired on after-hours television in the 1990s alongside infomercials for the Bedazzler.
4. Canadian capitol under siege
On Jan. 8 – two days after a violent mob attacked the U.S. Capitol – Canada’s seat of government sustained a similar surprise attack. A man, later identified in court documents as Gordon G. Gordon, entered the parliament building in Ottawa during a legislative session and allegedly bumped into Alice Monroe, causing Monroe to spill her coffee. Monroe, a Dept. of Agriculture analyst whose portfolio includes Moose and Reindeer subsidies, told police that Gordon said, “Watch where you’re going, eh?” and left the area without apologizing.
It is believed to be the most aggressive assault at the Canadian seat of government since an unidentified woman sneezed without saying “excuse me” during a 1986 hearing on whether Newfoundland should be one word or two.
5. Amy Coney Barrett’s rookie hazing
The newest Supreme Court justice got a series of rude awakenings after joining the court. Though she started in 2020, the practical jokes continued throughout 2021.
“Where to begin,” Barrett said. “Someone put garlic powder in all my N95 masks, then someone used furnace tape to spell ‘noob’ on the back of my robe. For, like, six months the sign outside my office read ‘The Honorable Amy Boney Carrett.’”
Carrett, er, Barrett said she hasn’t figured out who is behind the pranks.
“I asked [Chief Justice] John [Roberts] and he said he didn’t know. Then I asked [Justice Elana] Kagan and she said, ‘Maybe it’s the ghost of RBG’ and then walked away giggling,” Barrett said a day after sitting on a whooping cushion during oral arguments.
“Case was ‘Pull My Finger v [fart noise]’ or at least that’s what it read on my docket,” she said.
6. MAGA top baby name in Oklahoma
For the fourth year in a row, MAGA topped the list of baby names in Oklahoma.
“Hopefully, by the time she grows up, there won’t be no more socialism,” said proud papa Reginald “Buddy” Evans while exiting the hospital with his daughter MAGA Alison Evans.
MAGA came in first ahead of Donald, Boomer, Ivanka, Sooner, and Donald Jr.