Not to belittle the great humanitarian contributions of all those preternaturally (and financially) gifted folks who each new year make grand predictions for the coming 12 months, but, really, how hard is it? Elderly, cancer-stricken celebrity will die this year? Quite an insight, Nostra- damus. Major disaster in the Southwest U.S.? Way to go out on a limb there.
Last year, clairvoyant Rose Ann Schwab predicted that the war in Iraq would lead to anti-war demonstrations and would drag on. Rose, baby, we're going to Vegas!
Even those who hit for average can't resist swinging for the fences now and again, figuring a different law of averages will one day make them a legend. (This would be the same law that ensures that if I let a hundred monkeys write my column every month for a million years, as opposed to the 10 who already work on a month-to-month contract, I'll eventually win that Pulitzer.) Laugh at Schwab all you want, but receding ocean levels really will cause Atlantis to rise off the coast of Florida. Or not.
My own psychic abilities are confined mostly to predicting exactly when New York Knicks general manager and coach Isiah Thomas will make my head explode (any minute now) and how many Tesoro hot dogs a human can eat before their ability to perceive color is permanently altered (about two fewer than I had last week).
I have also proven gifted at predicting things that won't happen. So, in the new year spirit, I humbly present scenarios I guarantee will not transpire (no matter how much rational men wish they would).
Reach Michael Tsai at email@example.com.