Everyone has the flu, unless you work at Goldman Sachs, in which case you’re Johnny Amlerica, and your bonus check has too many zeroes. Children with the names of birds choke the sky in experimental flying vehicles, until it turns out they really don’t (Where the Wild Things Weren’t), and all the helicopter pilots west of the Mississippi go back to smoking crumpled cigarettes and grumbling about the clouds in the flight deck coffee. A president wins a Nobel Prize and everyone snickers, a panda conducts home invasions in an attempt to hawk Chinese food, and the world waits for word from the 1990s economy relay tower that it’s transmitting a schematic for how to fix everything. Too bad, because the software required to transmit that information wasn’t invented until 2006, which means it’s game over man, and we’re stuck out here with the hissing wind and a bad case of the Kardashians. There’s no control; we’re just grinding metal. And pop radio is full of mouse-click sleek songs that go nowhere beyond text speak platitudes and the lifted choruses of four-year-old Imogen Heap songs.
And then Britney, a French dude, and motherfucking Akon show up, and suddenly we’re in the pipe five by five. Sic transit gloria mundi.