Dave George - AOL News
Oh, 2010, you were such a disappointment. If you were my kid, your mother and I would be having this discussion in the living room and letting you know just how much you let us down. You had such potential! And you squandered it. This was the year when we were supposed to get good jobs for the jobless, the planet was going to begin healing, a war was going to end, and Lindsay Lohan was supposed to get sober.
Well, in any case, here's a quick look back at some of the biggest stories that broke in 2010. And, at no additional cost to you, I provide a forecast of how they will develop in 2011.
Steven Hoffer - AOL News
(Oct. 26) -- Forget the "fail whale." Today on Twitter, the untimely death of a different sea creature is causing all the buzz.
Paul the Octopus, the psychic sea creature who captivated the world with his flawless streak of 2010 World Cup predictions, died Monday night.
Paul made a name for himself during the World Cup in South Africa as he correctly predicted match winners by choosing a muscle from two boxes corresponding to the opposing nations. He became so popular that he even drew the ire of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who labeled Paul a symbol of "Western propaganda and superstition."
David Knowles - AOL News
(July 27) -- Perhaps the Iranian president picked Germany to win the World Cup?
Last week, at a national youth conference held in Tehran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad took aim at Paul the "Psychic" Octopus, the seemingly clairvoyant, German-based cephalopod who accurately predicted the outcome of eight matches of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, including Spain as the overall winner.
In the midst of a fiery speech denouncing Israel, the U.S. and Iran's other "enemies," Ahmadinejad suddenly and surprisingly turned his vitriol on Paul, declaring the creature a symbol of "Western propaganda and superstition." ...
Sarah Wildman - Politics Daily
¡Yo soy . . . español español español!
I am Spanish Spanish Spanish!
The chant was heard from the packed-to-the-gills Calle Alcalá in the heart of Madrid to la Rambla in the center of Barcelona to the streets of Valencia, to the alleys of Pamplona and the plazas of Bilbao -- all in the wake of Spain's decisive World Cup victory Sunday over the Netherlands. The decisive moment came on a brilliant, clean goal by Andres Iniesta in the 116th minute of what had been a brutal 0-0 championship game.
In the United States, when our athletes excel in international competition, it's no...
not in system - AOL News
(July 11) -- In the end, it's Spain hoisting the 2010 FIFA World Cup trophy. It's the first World Cup championship for Spain, the pre-tournament favorite, which defeated Netherlands 1-0 in the World Cup final. Spain is the eighth country to win the World Cup, and the first first-time winner since France won in 1998....
Patricia Volonakis Davis - AOL News
(July 9) -- Matthew Bernstein has seen firsthand the promise of the Internet in attracting new American fans to soccer.
The 43-year-old founder of the 500-member Hapoel Soccer Club in Maryland explains: "In the 1970s, when I watched the World Cup final on TV, I missed at least one goal due to commercial breaks. Four years later, it wasn't even televised. When the 'Wide World of Sports' opening credits showed the 'thrill of victory' with Marco Tardelli expressing his post-goal euphoria, I was over the moon. That was about as much 'live soccer' as we got."
"Now, in 2010," he says, "my 8-year-o...
Tony Deconinck - AOL News
(July 9) -- Editor's note: How well do you follow weird news? Find out with this strange-news quiz from our obsessive friends at Fark.com. Test your knowledge, and check your answers below.
1. In an effort to offer more creative vacation packages, one French company has added something unusual to the regular mix. What is it?
a) The Atomic Age package, a complete re-creation of a 1950s hotel, including restored cars, radio programs and period actors
b) Simulated kidnappings and imprisonment by fake terrorists
c) Upper-atmosphere sex tours where couples can try to conceive children in zero gra...
David Moye - AOL News
(July 9) -- If some people call the World Cup championship the biggest sporting event on the planet, what should the tournament's third-place game be called? The "Empty Cup"?
Germany and Uruguay face off Saturday in the not-so-big game, and each country will be fighting for the right to yell "We're No. 3! We're No. 3! We're No. 3!" for the next four years.
Along with ties, using points instead of wins to determine standings, and trying to draw penalties on the other team by faking injuries, the third-place game is yet another one of those things about soccer that Americans just don't get abo...
not in system - AOL News
BERLIN (July 9) - Eyes around the world were on Germany's octopus oracle Paul on Friday as he made his biggest prediction yet in the World Cup: Spain will beat the Netherlands in the final.
Paul's prescient picks in the World Cup - he has yet to predict a match wrong - have propelled him to international fame from obscurity a month ago in an aquarium in the western city of Oberhausen.
TV stations in Germany, Great Britain, Taiwan and elsewhere broadcast live pictures, complete with breathless commentary, of his final decision for the tournament. Millions watched as the world-famous octopu...
Will Durst - AOL News
(July 9) -- Now let me get this straight. The World Cup is the most exciting sporting event on the face of the planet, right? OK, then. What's second place? The New England Spinsters Knitting Circle Seniors Tour? That would make Supermodels Filling In Crossword Puzzles With Leaky Ink Pens a close third. Let's not forget those scintillating Midnight Coastal Colombian Tarantula Crawl-Offs.
Will Durst is author of "The All-American Sport of Bipartisan Bashing: Common Sense Rantings From a Raging Moderate."
My God. The World Cup is so European. Like a Bergman film. "Firdley p...