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Cybernaut Y2K

Although it’s impossible to adequately summarize all the ground-breaking events that took place over the past 366 days, that’s never stopped the media from printing list after list of "Best Of’s", "Worst Of’s",

Although it’s impossible to adequately summarize all the ground-breaking events that took place over the past 366 days, that’s never stopped the media from printing list after list of "Best Of’s", "Worst Of’s", and "Biggests" of 2000.

It’s not surprising when you consider that every politician, businessman, intellectual, athlete and activist in the free world took some time off to enjoy the holidays with friends and family. From a journalist’s perspective that means lean pickings; no news is not necessarily good news when you have column inches or airtime to fill.

Hence the endless barrage of lists, summaries, recaps, reviews, digests, introspectives, and contemplations for the previous year.

While it may seem like so much foam packing, for a society that suffers collectively from short-term memory loss it’s not a bad idea to take a look back and remember the year that you probably already forgot.

Find a link to the "A Look Back At 2000" review, and prepare yourself for a Canadian news flashback. Jean Chretien and the Liberals coast their way to a third majority government. Two Vancouver businessmen are charged with first-degree murder for the 1985 Air India bombing, which killed 329 people. The Toronto Stock Exchange stumbled when heavyweight Nortel Networks issued a lukewarm quarterly report. Charges were laid against former B.C. premier Glen Clark in connection with a casino license a friend received. Former prime minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau died – a nation mourned, and PM Chretien came under fire after he tried to rename Mount Logan, Canada’s highest peak, after the legendary Liberal. Air Canada and Canadian Airlines merged, and national and regional air travel will never be the same. This is just the tip of the iceberg.

This is similar to the MyBC list, although it covers more national and international events, and in greater detail. Some of the notable stories include the federal government’s two-day flip-flop over bailouts for Canada’s struggling NHL franchises, the war in Chechnya, Premier’s Ujjal Dosanjh’s rise to power, the famous "McSorely Incident", the $12.3 billion federal surplus, the MP3 fracas, Walkerton’s dirty water and the grand opening of the International Space Station.

A rough draft of the human genome, all three billion units of DNA, is coded through a massive international effort, creating a foundation for the discovery of new drugs and medical treatments. A Black Hole is discovered at the centre of our galaxy. Strong surface evidence is discovered to support the theory that there is water on or in Mars. Pond scum could conceivably generate a valuable and limitless supply of hydrogen for hydrogen fuel cells. These are just a sample of Popular Science magazine’s Top-10 Science Stories of 2000.

We like to be entertained. According to Entertainment Weekly, Aussie actor Russell Crowe was The Best of 2000, followed by the "Survivor" reality TV series and bad-rap rapper Eminem. Chuck & Buck (?) was selected as the best movie, followed by Requiem For A Dream and Traffic. Incidentally, only two of the top 10 best movies made it to Whistler, suggesting the need for some kind of review theatre. The worst movie was O Brother, Where Art Thou. There are also lists for the best and worst TV shows, actors, albums, videos, books, and Internet, plus highly subjective picks in all these categories from EW’s resident critics.

People’s answer to Entertainment Weekly’s New Year wrap-up is their annual list of the 25 Most Intriguing People. It’s an alphabetical list, so there’s no one to qualify as the Most Intriguing, but it’s a distinguished list all the same. George "Dubya" Bush, president by proxy and some partisan prodding, is on the list, as is sex symbol Sarah Jessica Parker, gold digger Darva Conger, Pitt digger Jennifer Aniston, international pull toy Elian Gonzalez, naked schemer Richard Hatch, harassed heir Prince William, pro wrestler The Rock – and the list goes on. There’s also a list of Most Intriguing Couples led by Meg Ryan and Russell Crowe, Madonna and Guy Ritchie, and Drew Barrymore and Tom Green.

From an economic point of view, 2000 was a breakthrough year for stock markets and indexes, as trading totals and prices broke records all over the map. Dot-coms also became dot-bombs overnight, and technology stocks lost ground to more conventional money earners as the market went through a reassessment and an honest appraisal of its true value. This is the official homepage of the Wall Street Journal, one of the most respected financial news sources on the planet. Like other media sources, the WSJ couldn’t resist publishing "Looking Back, Looking Ahead," an analysis of financial trends, business winners and losers, and the important news events of 2000. Memberships are required, but are free.

Even our nation’s music station couldn’t resist putting together a compilation of the best albums of 2000, at least according to VeeJay Rachel Perry, the host of Freshly Pressed. U2’s All That You Can’t Leave Behind was her top pick, followed by The Vandals’ Look What I Almost Stepped In and Black Eyed Peas’ Bridging The Gap . Another MuchMusic list to watch for are their annual Fromage Awards, saluting the cheesiest video releases of the year.