A Reasoned Debate Empowers Us All
People, all I’m saying, and I don’t think I’m at all out of line here, is that we need to be very careful with this award. Time Magazine’s Man of the Year is something we want to have some class and some weight, and we’ve walked a fine line too often in the past. Forgive me, but I don’t see anything wrong with being predictable and bestowing the honor on a prominent statesman, politician, or influential celebrity. It might be a little boring, but it’s genuine. Giving Time’s Man of the Year award to the Backspace key gives me many, many reservations. I know, of course, from a strictly intellectual standpoint, that without the Backspace key our lives would be difficult ones, and that it has saved mankind from many a spelling error or ill-conceived comment. I love it and value it just as much as any of you do, but generating a little controversy with the award and “thinking outside the box” are slightly different than inviting public scorn and “being morons”. A few other suggestions which you’ve given me for the Man of the Year award also trouble me. I don’t think the wicker chair or the bridge toll basket have actually done all that much to deserve such praise in the media, and “getting some” is neither a man nor even a noun which can even really be depicted on the cover of the magazine with any accuracy. Let’s take a deep breath and remember that the phrase “Man of the Year” holds within it a fairly specific definition, one which doesn’t leave much room for Ken’s idea to give the award to “pretty balloons,” as he so succinctly put it in his memo, or Sarah’s notion that it be bestowed upon a hypothetical cable network which would show all the episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in a continuous loop. Let’s just, for the love of God, focus on names of individual human beings who might be worthy of the praise we’re about to go national with. Let me throw one such name out here right now: Paul Anka. Come on, Paul Anka is Paul Anka, year in and year out, and everyone just knows it deep inside. Can I get a show of hands?