The 8th Annual Uncommon Loon Awards
Sexting quarterbacks, paranoid politicians, cash-hiding honchos—a look back in laughter at 2010’s looniest moments
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Gathering No Moss
Less than a month after rejoining the Vikings, Randy Moss proved he could change uniforms but not his stripes. Fined for cursing at a reporter and refusing to respond to questions, he held a bizarre press conference in which he declared that henceforth he would be asking the questions in addition to supplying the answers. Coach Brad Childress had just one question for him the next day: How soon can you clean out your locker?
Minnesota Court of Appeals Judge Kevin Ross struck a blow against baggy-pantsed suspects everywhere—while instantly boosting his street cred—when he quoted the pop hit “Pants on the Ground” in ruling that a police officer who discovered a gun while lifting a suspect’s droopy trousers had engaged in a lawful search and seizure. Now we know who’s still watching American Idol.
The World According to Bachmann
“I don’t want the United States to be in a global economy, where our economic future is bound to that of Zimbabwe,” Michele Bachmann said last summer, explaining her opposition to the G20 economic summits. Never mind that Zimbabwe is about a trillion dollars short of ever joining the convention of wealthy nations. After all, Bachmann argued, the semi-annual economics get-together is “one short step” to political unification of member nations, “and then you would have, literally, one world government.” Someone call James Bond.
Target enraged gay employees and customers last summer by donating to a group supporting gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer, whose views on gay rights are decidedly conservative. When activists responded with a boycott of Target, the company’s CEO, Gregg Steinhafel, defended the donation as “intended to support business objectives such as job creation and economic growth.” And who needs employees and customers for that?
Sid, Bronzed Alive
Despite never having tossed a tam (so far as we know), Sid Hartman became a little more like Mary Tyler Moore when he, too, allowed a statue of himself to be placed in downtown Minneapolis. In response, the city immediately began developing new guidelines for approving statues. No offense, Sid.
James Wallace Fall, of Mound, claimed to have God on his side in his defense against charges that he took a second bride in 2001. No matter that he was already married, the new bride was his niece, and she was 10 at the time. “Jim Fall believes he’s a prophet of God,” says the detective who arrested him. “He says the Bible tells him [the marriage was] okay.” Fall’s favorite Bible passage? From 1 Corinthians: “Everything is permissible for me.”
Driving a go-kart at no more than 20 miles per hour, 19-year-old Say Hai managed to elude police in downtown St. Paul—despite being Tasered three times and getting clotheslined by a parking-lot chain. Attention, writers of the next Hangover sequel: Have we got some material for you!
Sexts to Be You
Brett Favre’s final season nearly ended before it began after he was accused of texting photos of his private parts to former New York Jets sideline reporter Jenn Sterger. As the NFL investigated, the Vikings record headed, um, south and Saturday Night Live lampooned the brouhaha with a mock commercial of Favre shilling for Wrangler “open fly” jeans.
The Bell Museum was set to premiere its documentary on Mississippi River conservation, prophetically entitled Troubled Waters, when the museum’s overseers at the University of Minnesota pulled the plug. After it appeared that a university official was protecting agribusiness interests criticized in the film, the U relented. It even released thousands of e-mails from school officials showing the path to pulling the doc—a stand-up move except for one thing: Substantial portions of the e-mails had been deleted.