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Frog phone

I saw pale kings and princes too,/ Pale warriors, death-pale were they all;/ They cried—‘La Belle Dame sans Merci/ Thee hath in thrall!' – John Keats

The Cellphone Decade includes the years 2011 to 2020. The name is self-evident as the cellphone is now the life, the breath, the entire meaning of existence of millions upon millions of people intent on blocking thoroughfares and stairways as they check their Facebook stats. In no other time would the selfie be so socially significant that one would take a picture of oneself to send to oneself and people one hardly knows, then turn around and flame someone who uses the picture for their own evil purposes. Psychologists refer to living in one's own little world like that to a situation similar to the one presented in The Truman Show movie. Ironically, most people who went to the theater to see that were checking their tweets while it was running.

2011 – Year of upheavalEdit

The Arab SpringEdit

Protesters Yemen

While marching against the government, protesters do not realize they will get hit by roaming charges and probably several tanks at the same time.

While most people in the West merely saw this as a rollout of a new version of Irish Spring soap, people in places like Tunisia thought it was a good idea to change over from sleeping on the floor to a bed with a sprung mattress and a box spring. Now finally getting a good night's sleep for a change, their attention turned to more pressing issues. The run-of-the-mill Tunisian, rather than just being plain tired, also became tired of skyrocketing food prices and police brutality. It was generally agreed that it was very hard to post photos of empty plates on Yelp or Snapchat without getting a truncheon or blood in the shot.

In Tunis, Hassan bin Eazi walked into the middle of a busy street trying to get bars on his phone. Suddenly, the cheesy battery taken from a cheap hoverboard exploded and set him on fire. He figured inshallah, since he also found his Facebook page hacked and Instagram down, and he expired. Authorities took this to be a protest of some kind and called out the police to beat up a few hundred thousand people. Outraged citizens called each other and crashed tha 2nisian intertubes, which now made them really angry.

All this spread like wildfire to nearby Algeria, Egypt and even Jordan and Yemen on YouTube and social media after things got working again. People took to the streets battling police and the army, not even caring if their phone screens got scratched or worse. The promise of new rebuilt flip phones encouraged people in other countries in North Africa and the Arabian peninsula to also rise up. Leaders were toppled left and right, who mostly were unable to escape as protesters had already stolen the tires on their limos. Not one to be left out, Moammar Ghaddafi was kicked out of office and went down the tubes, or at least one tube.

At the same time, Mercans and Brits were largely concerned with aggregating more followers on social media, while their governments were busy trying to decide who to bomb next. What trillions of dollars and pounds could not do was done by determined people with phones and cheap plans with a lot of minutes or phone cards. Of course, Western governments lost some of their favorite dictators and so doubled down on surveillance of their own people, "just in case".

Tōhoku earthquake and tsunamiEdit

Tsunami stone

Placed after the massive 1896 tsunamis around the high water mark, stone such as this contain warnings not to build below it and add, "If you made it this far, you're pretty fast but still stupid."

If that wasn’t enough for end-of-the worlders to start packing their bags, March 11 marks the date of the Tōhoku earthquake in Japan. The authorities there had carefully built 10m (33 ft) walls to protect seaside cities and nuclear power plants from tsunamis, only to find waves up to 39 m (128 ft) tall overtopping them. Seems that they took the cheaper and easier way by taking the average wave height of recent tsunamis rather than anticipating anything close to the worst case in history. People who make it to higher ground after warnings are able to see the mostly forgotten stones placed after 1896 inscribed with warnings marking the high water line from the massive tsunamis of that year. Of course, if you were born before 1946, you probably end up treading water and getting a Toyota in the face before you could get to high ground.

Extensive damage hampers immediate rescue efforts, but, as usual, the major criminal gangs (yakuza) are somehow out distributing food, water and blankets before anyone else. So why not just turn everything over to the guys who can get things done? It is supposed that the yakuza never get elected since there would be nobody left to bribe the officials in government. And pity those carried out to sea by receding waters only to find that they can't get a cellphone signal out there. In Buddhist terms, that means their unrequited souls would roam the earth forever, taking revenge on their phone service providers. Luckily, the Mormons convert them posthumously to Mormonism so the lost souls could later vote for Mitt Romney as their last act in this world before attaining the everlasting bowls of lime Jello in the afterlife.

Speaking of criminals, power company TEPCO, in its infinite wisdom, placed all their emergency generators on the bottom floors of all their nuclear power plants. They did protect them with the standard 10m tall wall since nuclear power plants need no extra protection. Whatsoever. Ever. So, the mean old tsunami tops the walls easily, drowning the powerful hamsters used to run the emergency generators to keep the cores cooled. "Big boom", as the Japanese versions of Jane Fonda and Jack Lemmon say as they watch their own homegrown version of The China Cleveland Syndrome. The Japanese versions of Wilford Brimley and James Hampton run around in circles and point fingers as well. Technicians rejoice as escaping radioactive gas and water head toward China and Korea rather than their own houses that probably are now floating in the ocean anyway.

Japan, the country of creepy or cute robots that don't do much of anything, has to ask the US for some that actually had the ability to move. Those are sent into the reactor buildings and fry and die in minutes from the radiation. Can you say Chernobyl? Readers are urged to read the as-yet-unwritten 22nd century article in Uncyclopedia to see if TEPCO got their act together or just encased northern Japan in concrete and walked away.

2012 – End of the worldEdit

Earth destroyed

Since only the southern hemisphere was destroyed in 2012, nobody paid much attention to what was going on.

Since you were probably busy checking Snapchat, you probably missed the end of the world. This actually happens several times during the year causing several disruptions in social media which you did notice.

The basis for the end of the world was based on the notion that since the Mayan calendar system was ending on December 21, the world would follow. However the reason for the end of the calendar was obvious. As most Mayans had acquired the ancient technology known as Palm Pilots, there was no longer a need for written calendars. Mayan banks, markets and insurance companies then stopped giving out free calendars so astronomers and scribes lost their jobs.

New Age traditional lore traces back to very ancient times, estimated to be about 1977. Once again, it involves a conflation of ideas involving Mayans, space aliens and gossip from insane street people, all with secret knowledge. Their conclusion is that a new era of enlightenment was dawning. They congratulate themselves when they decide the suicide car bomb is part of this.

Terence McKenna rolls out his Timewave Zero formula created while he was on a variety of psychotropic drugs. Throwing in the I Ching for good measure, he irritates New Agers by beating them to the punch. And while his end of the world date doesn't coincide with the end of the Mayan calendar, in a moment of brilliant insight, he just changes it.

Christians still fervently hope for end times as they get to read and reread the most interesting part of the Bible. The most committed believers work in nuclear bomb construction and accident testing hoping for the best. Yet, as is written, and when least expected, the Rapture comes and takes all deserving people. However, after a careful count, it is found that only six humans and a porcupine were taken by God. Christians then go on a killing rampage, blaming Muslims, Jews and Quakers as usual.

Of course, skeptics discount the end of the world theories completely. When absolutely nobody is seen on the streets on December 21, they explain that they have other things to do, like checking under the bed or cleaning the basement.

2013 – Year of the men in blackEdit

ISIS and friends

The self-styled caliphate ISIL/ISIS/IS/Daesh source fighters from many countries. Obviously, they aren't too picky on who they hire.

After spending a winter underground like gophers, albeit fanatical ones, ISIL/ISIS/IS/Daesh/whoever flex their collective gopher muscles and expand their territory, leaving the 31 actual serving members of the Iraqi army reeling. The pseudogovernment expands into Syria at the same time into areas the Syrian government could care less about. Despite arguments with Al Qaeda and other groups over who was most murderous and most fanatical (determined by a poll of 100 audience members of Family Feud), they fail to clash and kill each other off.

Advertising on social media, thousands join the cause, either for the cash or the ability to kill just about anybody they like. In response, this requires the United States Marine Corps to ramp up its efforts to avoid losing potential recruits. Luckily, inner city gang members dislike the Daesh/whovever anti-drug stance and continue to join the US armed forces in order to tag foreign countries and sell smack. However, Daesh/whoever finds that their message is a little too attractive to emos and their black uniforms too attractive to Goths. Beheadings of "dead wood" would be shown on YouTube over and over, with the practice later being adopted by Silicon Valley companies like Google to reduce their workforces.

In February, a meteor explodes over Chelyabinsk, Russia, with the event recorded on dashcams and phones and shown all over the world. Many people panic as they apparently have to the need to panic over things out of their control. Dinosaurs, who were largely wiped out by a meteor thousands of years ago, have nothing to say about the incident as they’re all dead anyway except for the Loch Ness Monster.

Russia then decides it needs to protect the Crimea and parts of the Ukraine from meteors and grabs both, though allowing a referendum in the Crimea to decide the matter. Vladimir Putin allows his good friend, then-hotelier Donald Trump, to become an honorary Crimean for a day and vote in the election. Miraculously, the referendum, requiring a 99% vote to pass, clears by just one vote. Trump later wins 2 hotels in a raffle held at a dinner held in his honor.

Also in February, Pope Benedict XVI resigns without God throwing a lightning bolt at him or anything like that. Apparently his Hitler Youth roots proved too strong and it is thought he will return to that organization in order to kill Jews faster than he could as a Catholic.

Edward Snowden rats out the US government and moves to Russia to look for meteors. As American sheeple are totally involved with new versions of Grand Theft Auto and Bioshock, they failed to notice or care about being spied on or reining in their government. While that lack of concern is rated doubleplusgood by the NSA, they still want Snowden's head for not washing the coffee mugs he used when he worked there.

2014 – Don't arrive at your destination yearEdit

Ice tea

As all Russian Olympic athletes are completely dehydrated after competition, they are allowed to bring urine samples from home for drug testing, provided that the samples are kept cool.

The Winter Olympics are held in Sochi, Russia. Russian athletes sweep all the medals for every event with none testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs. Yet, it would take weeks after the events were over before piles of syringes could be cleaned up from the site. Much later, Olympic officials would become suspicious as cross country gold medalist Alexander Legkov skied home to Kamchatka, then continued around the world. Retesting of samples disqualify many Russians including Legkov. Upon appeal, being found to be a sickly half kangaroo/half rhinoceros, his unrelated medication is determined to have caused a false positive.

It is not a good year for Malaysia Airlines, which loses Flight 370 somewhere over the Indian Ocean. Americans are astounded that it is not tracked to its exact crash site as the microchips in their heads and phones allows their tracking to plus or minus ten feet (3m). Authorities are thus forced to radically extend the boundaries of the Bermuda Triangle. Rumors abound, largely instigated by the Malaysian government, including one about the pilot purposely forgetting to check that engines were actually on the wings before takeoff. However, in the crash of Malaysia Flight 17 over eastern Ukraine, Russia clearly states that the nonexistent missile that was not Russian-made that was not fired at the nonexistent jet was not the reason for anything. The US shamefacedly says nothing as its USS Vincennes shot down an Iranian civilian jet in 1988 by mistake rather than intentionally. The International Civil Aviation organization (ICAO) reminds its members to avoid missiles.

The Ebola virus becomes a major concern in the US largely because it sounds like Ebonics. Americans also worry that their heavy illegal drug use will compromise their immune systems and make them vulnerable. The resultant hysteria sends Prozac sales to new heights, with pharmaceutical companies building more back doors onto their factories to feed the underground trade. In response, Apple rolls out a new iPhone guaranteed 100% Ebola-free, as its factory workers are pre-tested and then clearly obligated to commit suicide after building 10,000 phones.

Rioting and protests occur in Ferguson, Missouri after the shooting death of Michael Brown. Ferguson police display and use an impressive array of surplus military weaponry whereas the Iraqi army is supplied by the US with cardboard armor and guns that shoot little flags with BANG on them, as are US troops in Afghanistan.

Scotland holds a referendum, Weegeexit, on whether to leave the UK. Depending on who’s talking, Scots either overwhelming vote to stay or almost pull off independence. This later gives the copycat Loony Party, also known as Not the Monster Raving Loony Party but Still Loony, the idea to secede from the European Union, causing rejoicing among Little Englanders.

2015 – A Madlibs kind of yearEdit

During the year, there are number bombings. Blaming some situation, type of criminals place bombs hidden in objects at the building or location in city, country, causing number injuries and number fatalities. Authorities suspect organization and vow to round up the usual suspects led by terrorist random name from Facebook. As there are so many of these incidents, most people just scroll through them to get to cat pictures or porn.

The World Health Organization declares Nutella has been eradicated from the Americas, but it turns out to be a typing misteak.

Notables that join the choir invisible in 2015 included: Leonard Nimoy (reincarnated ambassador to Cardassia famed for his removable ears), Lee Kuan Yew (everyone's favorite Singaporean dictator), B.B. King (bluesman and hamburger-selling transgender tennis star), Christopher Lee (due to come back to life anytime now), Yogi Berra (Eastern mystic and friend of Boo-Boo) and Lemmy Kilmeister (front man for bands The Archies, The Partridge Family, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, etc.).

2016 – Pokémon revival yearEdit

The United Nations declares this the International year of pulses. Well-meaning health care personnel go around checking everyone to see if they have one, excepting still-beloved vampires and zombies. What the UN really meant was beans, lentils and suchlike, which really meant that the UN was running out of ideas. Health care personnel then check beans for pulses and finding none, simply give up.

The new disease of the moment to worry about is the Zika virus, carried by (among others) the familiar Aedes aegypti mosquito. If only people worried more about these long-time foreign invaders rather than the legal two-legged immigrants they're so afraid of, things probably wouldn't be so problematic. Rather than clearing out standing pools of water, or perhaps not living in swamps, Americans seem to prefer slapping themselves during the day as a means of mosquito control.

Pokemon Go 03

Dude, you gotta step in a lot closer to catch it. You got like 40 of these already? Just force a trade with your little sister like you always do.

People rush to buy the last videocassette players being manufactured but not because of any retro trend to go back to tapes. It is found that with the aging housecat population, their poorer eyesight meant that attacking an opening CD player tray was becoming difficult. However, VCR trays are larger, slower and noisier, providing the perfect toy for cats particularly since the animals have eaten every laser pointer made to date.

Pokémon Go is released, a phone app/game that garners a huge following. Players actually have to get out of the house and roam around to catch Pokémon. It is remarkable to see pasty white mole-like adults and children who have rarely seen daylight stumbling around with cellphone in hand, just being missed by drivers also with cellphone in hand looking for Pokémon. Crack houses, bordellos, serial killer's houses and even schools are suddenly well-visited by players searching for rare critters. This situation could not last, obviously, as the game is hacked, allowing players to once again just sit at home and play the game.

Bob Dylan wins the Nobel Prize for Literature for his body of work of his song lyrics. The Nobel committee agreed unanimously that "Everyone must get stoned" although their critics wondered if any of them had bought any record albums or books in the last 30 years. Motley Crüe's Nikki Sixx was particularly upset upon hearing the news. "Content and obscure references in song lyrics. If I only knew." While "crimson flames tied through his ears rolling high and mighty traps" after the announcement, Dylan seems nonplussed at the achievement. Part of the requirement of the award is to show up in Oslo, Norway and to speak. Whether Dylan's mumbling counts as speaking is up for debate. In the meantime, he continues to compete with other ancient rockers and folkies to see who who can look the most grizzled and gray, whether dead or alive.

Smoke lots

Samsung phone users march in protest of the recall of the Note 7.

Samsung provides thrills and chills for newly minted buyers of its Galaxy Note 7. A raft of defective batteries cause a fair number of them to burst into flame beginning just a month after release. Initial reviews are very positive for the phone with no blogger mentioning smoke obscuring the screen. Still, suspect overheating batteries are replaced, this time by other defective overheating and exploding batteries, with Samsung denying all the while that there was nothing wrong with the phone. A US recall is issued but, as ever, some people just have to keep theirs, with fiery results. Notices against the carrying of Galaxy Note 7s pop up everywhere with paranoids carefully trying to identify them as phone users walk past or stand nearby. It isn't until October that Samsung eventually stops sales. Extreme sports enthusiasts are disappointed as carrying a smoking Note 7 while riding an exploding hoverboard while BASE jumping is right there on the edge. It is unknown how many ISIL/ISIS/IS/Daesh/whoever suicide bombers do themselves in accidentally by carrying one of the phones.

2017 – Boom boom, out go the lightsEdit

Video hosting service Vine, home of the 6-second loop, is revived as "Vine Camera" for mobile devices after being left for dead in late 2016. As always, parent Twitter decides that making changes that nobody wants is the thing to do to justify their own existence by making the videos captive to Twitter or one's own phone. This move is greeted with a resounding chorus of two crickets chirping. The Vines site is meekly and weakly brought back but as archive-only. This is thought to be so that the Way-Back Machine site can keep busy.

Trump looking at sun

Yes, he really did this before eclipse totality. A bonus gold star is awarded for pointing.

The United States gets its very own total eclipse, once again asserting its standing in the Western world. Although having a large part of its population in the dark already, that state is confirmed by the large numbers that travel to spots where totality was predicted. This insures much happiness, with price gouging by merchants and thieves doing their thing while everyone's attention is occupied. The best viewing spots are taken early, with thousands watching the progress of the eclipse on the phones. Pornhub reports a huge drop in traffic balanced out by a very active Bill Clinton and Harvey Weinstein during the period of totality. Despite warnings and ready availability of protective glasses, notables like rapper Joey Badass and Donald Trump brag about not using special glasses, though the latter's spokespeople state that Trump is “just momentarily checking to make sure that was really the sun up there.” Burn marks on the back of Badass's head provide evidence of possible eye damage, whereas experts agree brain damage had already occurred before the eclipse.

North Korean bad boy Kim Jong-nam is assassinated at Kuala Lumpur Airport in Malaysia, apparently at the instigation of either North Korea or a combine of Las Vegas and Macao casinos who felt he didn't tip enough the last time he visited. Kim, the older brother of current president-dictator Kim Jong-un was originally slated to replace their father as head of North Korea. However, he was caught trying to sneak into Tokyo Disneyland under an assumed name, embarrassing his government by trying to use the "I'm-only-five-and-a-half-years-old" excuse to get in. He has since been living the chubby playboy lifestyle, completing the cycle with his untimely death. Reports state that he was easily pinpointed by his Facebook posts and Twitter tweets. Two locals are hired to splash him with a nerve agent, and are told that it is a prank, which it is, if you're Cesare Borgia. Malaysia being Malaysia, officials ship Kim Jong-nam's body to North Korea and carefully divvy up the reported $100,000 in his backpack. Meanwhile, the rest of the world realizes that Kim Jong-un has read The Prince by Machiavelli after all, despite being a fan of The Three Stooges.

See alsoEdit