Dec. 22, 2002: A First Look at the Events of 2003

Don’t look now, but I think we have survived 2002. As is my custom, I plan to greet the New Year scarfing down record amounts of corn-fried shrimp at the exquisite little Georgia Sea Grill on St. Simons Island with a group of friends who are better than I deserve.

The year was memorable, to say the least. We saw a French judge try to fix the ice-skating competition at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, proving once again that the French hate us. Tom Glavine gave Atlanta the back of his glove and went to New York because the Braves refused to buy him his own Federal Reserve Bank. Georgia voters sent incumbent Governor Roy Barnes and His Mightiness Tom Murphy to the showers.

But that was last year. What about 2003? Without trepidation, here are the stories I guarantee will make news in the next twelve months. Just remember, you read it here first.

ARABS AGREE WITH PROFILING. Today, an Arab spokesman agreed that profiling Arabs makes perfectly good sense. “After losing thousands of people in the World Trade Center attacks and after the bombing of the USS Cole, the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, and the killing of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, you are doggone right the U.S. Government should profile us — unless you think those deeds were the work of Bonnie and Clyde”.

MOVIE STARS ADMIT THEY DON’T HAVE A CLUE. Despite their hand-wringing over the possibilities that the United States may bomb Iraq, actors Martin Sheen and Mike Farrell admitted they don’t know what they are talking about. “Why should we?” Sheen said. “We live in a land of make-believe and just read words others write for us.”

DEMOCRATS SAY REDISTRICTING WAS MEANT AS A JOKE. Georgia Democrats now say that they were only kidding when they redistricted the state to create 1,000 Democratic districts and none for the Republicans. “We were just having some fun,” said one Democrat. “We didn’t mean for folks to take it so personally.”

NEW YORK TIMES TO BOYCOTT THE MASTERS. The New York Times announced today that they would not cover the 2003 Masters Tournament, because of the absence of female members in the Augusta National Golf Club. The announcement was made by all the white men who run the newspaper.

ATLANTA MAY HAVE TO MOVE. With the election of Republican governor Sonny Perdue, state leaders are mulling over whether to move the City of Atlanta to Indiana. “We don’t need them,” said a spokesperson for Perdue. “The city is broke and nobody goes there after dark. The whole place is full of hot air. Maybe they could start over in Indiana and get it right.”

SUV OWNERS SUFFER FROM LOW SELF-ESTEEM. The National Association of SUV Owners today revealed today why their members drive gas-guzzlers at a time when the nation finds itself seriously dependent on foreign oil. According to Rhonda Rodehogg, association president, “SUV owners suffer from low self-esteem, and sucking up all the available gas in the country while tailgating drivers and yapping on our cell phones makes us feel important.”

LARRY JONES RECONSIDERS; DECIDES TO STAY IN BASEBALL. Larry Jones, aka Chipper, has decided to remain a baseball player. Jones, who gets paid $90 million by the Atlanta Braves to hit a ball with a stick, complained last year about how hard his life was and said if he had it to do over, he might have chosen another career. Sources say Jones decided to endure the hardships of playing baseball after finding out that nobody else would pay him $90 million, since the only marketable skill he seems to have is hitting a ball with a stick.

COLUMNIST EXPECTED TO TURN OVER NEW LEAF IN 2003. A spokeswoman confirmed today that she expects columnist Dick Yarbrough to tone his writing down considerably in 2003. In making the announcement, The Woman Who Shares His Name said, “He insulted everybody he could think of last year and created a high level of stress in my life. If he doesn’t back off, I am going to force-feed broccoli through his nose until he turns green.” Yarbrough was not available for comment, but he is expected to comply.