The silly list, Part 2: A look back at the most ridiculous moments that summed up 2013

 

 

35. News: Literal minded

The Daily Telegraph noticed belatedly that the Oxford English Dictionary had – two years earlier – let in a definition of "literally" as: "Informally, used for emphasis rather than being actually true." Pedants literally went into meltdown and were turned into candles.

34. Politics: Lord Byron

"Look at me, a straightforward, burger-eating chap." This was the message that George Osborne intended to send with a tweeted picture of a meat-patty by his side, the night before he was due to give the June Spending Review. More fool he, as journalists spotted the burger was from Byron, where a takeaway rarely comes in under ten guineas. Eric Pickles showed remarkable agility with his own tweeted snap in response – a salad.

33. Culture: Please do try this at home

Please do try this at home: Author Amy Tan revealed the fun that can be had with the cover of her new novel, The Valley of Amazement - it turns out that the half-face on the cover of the book fits perfectly over the lower half of the reader's face
Thanks to the author Amy Tan for some moments of exquisite silliness on Twitter, after she revealed the fun that can be had with the cover of her new novel, The Valley of Amazement. It turns out that the half-face on the cover of the book fits perfectly over the lower half of the reader's face.

32. News: The wooden train arriving at platform seven…

(OJO Images)
In January, Bigjigs Toys published details of its toy trains division's bid to run the west coast mainline. It highlighted its k 100 per cent punctuality and safety record since 2005; seeing the silly side, a Department of Transport official responded sincerely, writing that: "Wooden carriages are unlikely to meet modern crashworthiness standards for operation on the heavy rail network."

31. Celebrity: Mais ou est Gérard?

How much did Gérard Depardieu actor want to avoid a tax bill in his native France? First, he moved to Belgium. And then we learnt in February that he had earnt Russian citizenship by personal decree of his 'friend' President Putin, and taken up residency in Saransk, in the central Russian province of Mordovia (famed for its Stalin-era gulags!) (AFP/Getty)
How much did the sybaritic actor want to avoid a tax bill in his native France? First, he moved to Belgium. And then we learnt in February that he had earnt Russian citizenship by personal decree of his "friend" President Putin, and taken up residency in Saransk, in the central Russian province of Mordovia (famed for its Stalin-era gulags!).

30. Culture: And now for something completely different

(Getty)
New editor Ian "Lol" Katz injected hitherto rarely seen humour into Newsnight. A whimsical final item swiftly became Katz's trademark, perhaps best represented by the first appearance on a current- affairs programme of Sesame Street's Cookie Monster.

29. Politics: Cuddling up to Kim

(AFP/Getty)
In September, the colourful former US basketball star Dennis Rodman paid his second visit to North Korea to see the "good-hearted kid" he calls his friend, Kim Jong-un. He visited the leader's private island: "It's like Hawaii or Ibiza, but he's the only one that lives there." North Korea's record on human rights gave him little pause for thought. "I don't care what the fuck he does over there," said Rodman. "Between me and him, we're friends. I don't care."

28. Sport: The tooth will out!

(Getty)
At the Honda Classic in Palm Beach in February and March, the then-world number-one golfer Rory McIlroy quit by walking off the course during the second round while seven over par. The reason, he said, was toothache – although just before leaving, he was photographed demolishing a massive sandwich. Cue much embarrassment for McIlroy, who did subsequently apologise.

27. Fashion: The Theresa and Cara Show

The Daily Mail asked, "Is Theresa May Turning Into Cara Delevingne?" on the basis of some ingenious picture research turning up photos of the Home Secretary and the model sometimes wearing clothes that looked a bit similar if you shut your eyes or used Google Search for "similar images".

26. Web: Smoke and mirrors

Smoke and mirrors: In March, the world watched a chimney no grander than a prison's ventilation pipe for news of a decision about a new Pope (Getty)
In March, the world watched a chimney no grander than a prison's ventilation pipe for news of a decision about a new Pope. Yet, for hour after hour, no white smoke appeared. The Metro newspaper live-blogged the boredom, and drew a huge online audience to nothing but its wry satire on rolling news culture. "BREAKING: no smoke… Update: still no smoke," and, much later… "Still no smoke. Awkward." When a seagull landed on the chimney, Metro's site nearly buckled under the weight of excitement.

25. Sport: He's behind you!

He's behind you! Rugby Lions centre Manu Tuilagi gave David Cameron a pair of bunny ears as they proposed in Downing Street for photographers (AFP/Getty)
In September on the steps of Downing Street, the rugby Lions centre Manu Tuilagi was standing behind David Cameron for a photo. He gave the prime minister a pair of bunny ears, as you would. He apologised on Twitter, and though former Lion and commentator Brian Moore described him 'a complete and utter prat', the PM said no apology was necessary.

24. Culture: All's fair in love…

This was the year that erotic fiction got silly, with publishers apparently competing to offer the weirdest erotica "with a twist". If Hedging His Bets – an erotic novel whose hero is a werehedgehog – is just too vanilla for your beloved's literary taste , try Taken by the T-Rex – part of a new genre known as "dinosaur erotica". "Warning: This is a tale of beast sex" cautions the blurb. Grr!

23. Fashion: Shaggy shoes

Phoebe Philo and Fendi covered high heels in mink, while Rochas' Marco Zanini smothered them in feathers. Footwear looked to Fraggle Rock for inspiration for 2013. Approach with caution. It's easy to end up looking like Lily Savage lost down Sesame Street.

22. Sport: Farah-away look

(via YouTube)
After he'd won the New Orleans half-marathon in February, double Olympic gold medallist Mo Farah was interviewed on the local WDSU news channel by LaTonya Norton – who clearly had no idea who he was. "Now, haven't you run before?" she inquired. He played along with the idea that he was a fun runner made good. In his autobiography Mo was forgiving. "It's not her job to keep up to date with who's who in British athletics," he wrote. "Besides, in America no one knows who I am."

21. Celebrity: Straight outta Preston

The American rapper Coolio chummed up with some local students at his after-party following a gig in Preston. He promised he'd come round to their student digs the next night and cook them dinner – and he ACTUALLY DID. After serving them Caprese salad, his signature dish "Chicken à la Daaaamn" and peach crumble, Coolio and the kids had a jamming session in which they rapped – what else? – his 1995 hit "Gangsta's Paradise".

 

CLICK HERE for part 1

CLICK HERE for part 3

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Recruitment Genius: Trainee Health & Safety Consultant

    £16000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic and exciting opport...

    Recruitment Genius: Project and Quality Manager

    £28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is an independent ...

    Recruitment Genius: Trainee Sales Executive - OTE £20,625

    £14625 - £20625 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This role is for an enthusiasti...

    Guru Careers: Financial Controller

    £45 - £55k DOE: Guru Careers: A Financial Controller is required to join a suc...

    Day In a Page

    Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... for the fourth time

    Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... again

    I was once told that intelligence services declare their enemies dead to provoke them into popping up their heads and revealing their location, says Robert Fisk
    Margaret Attwood on climate change: 'Time is running out for our fragile, Goldilocks planet'

    Margaret Attwood on climate change

    The author looks back on what she wrote about oil in 2009, and reflects on how the conversation has changed in a mere six years
    New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered: What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week

    New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered

    What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week
    Oculus Rift and the lonely cartoon hedgehog who could become the first ever virtual reality movie star

    The cartoon hedgehog leading the way into a whole new reality

    Virtual reality is the 'next chapter' of entertainment. Tim Walker gives it a try
    Ants have unique ability to switch between individual and collective action, says study

    Secrets of ants' teamwork revealed

    The insects have an almost unique ability to switch between individual and collective action
    Donovan interview: The singer is releasing a greatest hits album to mark his 50th year in folk

    Donovan marks his 50th year in folk

    The singer tells Nick Duerden about receiving death threats, why the world is 'mentally ill', and how he can write a song about anything, from ecology to crumpets
    Let's Race simulator: Ultra-realistic technology recreates thrill of the Formula One circuit

    Simulator recreates thrill of F1 circuit

    Rory Buckeridge gets behind the wheel and explains how it works
    Twitter accused of 'Facebookisation' over plans to overhaul reverse-chronological timeline

    Twitter accused of 'Facebookisation'

    Facebook exasperates its users by deciding which posts they can and can’t see. So why has Twitter announced plans to do the same?
    Jane Birkin asks Hermès to rename bag - but what else could the fashion house call it?

    Jane Birkin asks Hermès to rename bag

    The star was shocked by a Peta investigation into the exotic skins trade
    10 best waterproof mascaras

    Whatever the weather: 10 best waterproof mascaras

    We found lash-enhancing beauties that won’t budge no matter what you throw at them
    Diego Costa biography: Chelsea striker's route to the top - from those who shared his journey

    Diego Costa: I go to war. You come with me...

    Chelsea's rampaging striker had to fight his way from a poor city in Brazil to life at the top of the Premier League. A new book speaks to those who shared his journey
    Ashes 2015: England show the mettle to strike back hard in third Test

    England show the mettle to strike back hard in third Test

    The biggest problem facing them in Birmingham was the recovery of the zeitgeist that drained so quickly under the weight of Australian runs at Lord's, says Kevin Garside
    Women's Open 2015: Charley Hull - 'I know I'm a good golfer but I'm also just a person'

    Charley Hull: 'I know I'm a good golfer but I'm also just a person'

    British teen keeps her feet on ground ahead of Women's Open
    Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

    Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

    Turkish President Erdogan could benefit politically from the targeting of the PKK, says Patrick Cockburn
    Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

    Our choice is years of Tory rule under Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

    Yvette Cooper urged Labour members to 'get serious' about the next general election rather than become 'a protest movement'