Dear The Future,
It's me, Daniel. You might know me from all of the subversive, groundbreaking work that changes the face of entertainment that I will eventually do, or perhaps you're familiar with all of the generous charity work I imagine I'll get around to one of these days. And obviously, you recognize my face, as I'm sure it is featured prominently on all of your currency.
How is the future? Pretty nice I bet. If the predictions I've made are at all accurate, (and history assures me they are), then you've since moved to space when the Earth became completely unlivable as a result of the terrifying Gorgon invasion of 2011. My prophetic visions tell me that sure was one hell of a battle. Who would have thought the key to defeating them was as simple as sending me into battle armed with only my wits and a thorough index of all of their weaknesses? But I don't need to bore you with stories of my eventual amazing feats on the battlefield; I'm sure you reenact the events every year at various Danielmas festivals around space. You're probably preoccupied with intergalactic space wars and special victims crimes of the moon rape variety, so I'll try to make this letter as brief as possible.
Since most of Earth's physical records needed to be sacrificed to placate the Ghost of Terror Jesus in 2013, you're no doubt wondering what life in 2009 was like. Well, I'll tell you. Right now.
You're all in space, drinking gamma rays and eating asteroid hot dogs, so your technology has already developed light years beyond ours, but 2009 was an important year for our pedestrian, caveman technology. While not developed in 2006, 2009 is when Twitter a) really took off and b) finally made some money. Twitter was an up-to-the-second news source that was operated entirely by the public and not the stodgy, ("experienced"), elitist, ("educated"), out of touch, ("unconcerned with Miley Cyrus") dinosaurs of Old Media. This was for and by the people. One quick look at Twitter's trending topics will tell you what's going on in the world as it happens. Want to find out what celebrity is dead? Check trending topics. Twitter also gave anyone a possible audience of millions. Twitter gave a venue for every Average Joe to speak about what was on his mind, and Twitter assured its users that what they had to say was
worthwhile. You didn't just have fans or friends on Twitter, you had followers. What you had to say was important.
You're in the future so you know that, obviously, they did not have anything important to say. People are fleshy boxes of stupid with mouths and most of them should be kept silent and in the dark as often as possible. Really, Twitter is pointless and no one should even have an account. With, uh, some some notable exceptions...
We also got into Large Hadron Colliders in a big way. Yeah, 2009 was a weird circle of giving everyone a giant megaphone and then immediately punishing ourselves for it with the constant threat of universal collapse.
You may look back on 2009 and think "Hey, that wasn't such a bad year. Why would they celebrate by murdering the bulk of their celebrities?" It's not quite as simple as that.
You see, Nature has a way of righting itself when things start to go wrong. Bees pollinate plants, which keeps us alive. Praying Mantises keep the bee population in check, to make sure we're never overrun by uppity bees who think they're hot shit because they keep us alive. And I, in turn, kill Praying Mantises out of boredom or whatever. The world is full of stories of animals, people and plants adapting with changes. Nature adjusts and balances itself out when it senses danger.
Now, in 2009, we had a weird habit of making celebrities out of
impossibly fertile women, illiterate golden goblins, and glorified strippers. People with no redeemable qualities or objective value were given the highest honor America has to bestow, (celebrity status), and somewhat disastrously, more and more people wanted to join them. Once one person got famous for doing nothing, everybody wanted in. Real World begat Road Rules begat Laguna Beach begat The Hills begat The City begat The Real Housewives Of… begat Jersey Shore and so on. If my predictions are accurate, MTV will debut a show in early 2010 that just centers around one of the New Kids on the Block trying to fuck a monkey, and it will destroy the ratings.
It's bad for culture, society and the economy when everyone tries to be a celebrity, and Nature knows this. Just as the ratio of normal people to celebrities was about to shift in favor of the celebrities, Nature decided to strike back and straight murder a shitload of celebrities in no discernible pattern. Nature didn't murder the weakest, or the biggest, or the brightest or the fattest, she just murdered a ton of unrelated celebrities. Nature
couldn't even give a shit, she just wanted to send a message. That message? Stop making celebrities out of brainless, self-important shit sacks.
This will happen every so often. If you, people of the future, start to get delusional senses of entitlement, and if your children start thinking "Hey, I'd like to be a space celebrity some day, because what I have to say is important," then don't be surprised if all of your celebrities start eating it early in a big, big way.
Your Current Lack of President
I'm not telling you anything surprising when I say "You don't have a president or any governing body whatsoever." That's our bad. Or, maybe not our bad, but certainly someone's bad, we just ended up saddled with the blame. See, in 2009, between unemployment reaching new and terrifying heights and the economy being, as economist Paul Krugman put it, "waist-deep in shit sandwiches," something needed to happen in America. Something big. Instead, nothing happened. It marked the first time in history that a US President quit when former President Barack Obama scrawled "Fuck it, it's too much" on the wall of the Oval Office and simply walked off. He couldn’t fix everything, so he decided to compromise by fixing nothing and leaving office in late 2009. Honestly, though, no one's mad at him. He certainly
tried and he seemed like a nice enough guy. He left the White House to, as he said in interviews, "Focus on his music just get back to the basics. Really stripped down, bare bones stuff, you know?" He came out with a blues album that was just okay. Showed a whole lot of promise but ultimately didn't do anything new or shake up the scene, you know?
Anyway, after his departure, the race to find his replacement was on, but no one stepped up. The logical choice, "Swingin'" Joe Biden threw a tantrum whenever anyone asked him about taking over. In March of 2010, Katie Couric asked him why he wasn't fulfilling his obligation and he reportedly stomped his feet and held his breath for a full minute, exhaling only when Katie, panicked, assured him that everything was okay, and he didn't need to be president if he didn't want to. In short, no one wanted to move in and lead the country, so no one did. That's why you're all sort of…hanging around now, I guess, and come to think of it, it's probably largely the reason that the Gorgons attacked when they did, sensing our moment of weakness and instability.
Remember that? When the Giants won Super Bowl XLIV? That was awesome. It was close, and the Giants had a season that, by all logic, should have kept them out of the Super Bowl on a very technical level, (not winning enough games), but, man, the Giants still pulled it out and won. And then Manning made a speech and thanked me specifically. Brett Favre died. What a great game.
2009 put forth little in the way of notable television. Good shows certainly existed during 2009, (Mad Men, Dexter, episodes of Deadwood I would watch on DVD sometimes), but successful and influential shows that debuted in 2009 are few and far between. It seemed that television was in a dark place, so a dissatisfied America turned to what we called "The Webternet."
Agents of Cracked exploded onto the scene in 2009, the whole world got measurably warmer because
so much shit hit so many fans simultaneously that it was impossible for anyone to cool down for years. If you pretend Pinocchio was about a little wooden turd, the debut of Agents of Cracked can be considered the climax of that movie, because when AOC came onto the scene is precisely when the shit got real.
The first season of the show saw some competitors, both on the web and on TV, but all of these other shows started disappearing around the time that Season 2 debuted in 201, as if their creators saw the majesty that wasAOC and decided that attempting to compete would be an insult, to the audience and to themselves. By Season 3, Agents of Cracked and its many spinoffs comprised the sum total of all of the world's entertainment. But I don't need to tell you, Future, as your language is comprised almost entirely of
AOC quotes from later seasons. That sure was one wild dick, am I right? (Season 3, Episode 11). Oh, man. People reading this in the present, trust me, that joke is going to be hilarious eventually.
So, yes, Future, you only understand comedy and entertainment as viewed through an Agents of Cracked lens, but you should know that 2009 is when it all started.
Also, in the critically acclaimed Season 17, (known colloquially as "The Porn Season"), this show introduced that now popular catchphrase/sexual stereotype, "Once you go Daniel, you'll never be satisfied with any other maniel."
Sure is a whole lot of words to cram onto a shirt.
Daniel O'Brien is earning his pHD in Future Space Travel at the University of Yale. Vote for Agents of Cracked in the Streamy Awards and he will love you. Hard.