Rudy Panucci On Pop Culture

2009: The Year In Review

It’s hard to believe 2009 is over already. What an amazing year. Quite the roller-coaster ride. I’m not going to go too deeply into details about how great everything has been since I’m saving that for the Radio Free Charleston Year In Review special on CBS.  If someone told you all the cool, strange, and unexpected twists that happened in 2009, you would have thought they were crazy. Let’s just take a month by month look at some of the highlights of the coolest year ever.

January: Who can forget the amazing sight of Barack Obama and Oprah Winfrey joining West Virginia’s own Doris Fields onstage at the Inaugural Ball, performing her award winning song, “Go Higher”. Even more amazing was when Stevie Wonder, Bono, Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, Prince, and Aretha Franklin rushed the stage halfway through the song and joined in.

The Inauguration of Barack Obama instilled in the country an overwhelming sense of hope. Something that was much-needed after the record layoffs and strange lights in the sky that started the new year.

February:There were so many wild events in February to choose from that were so notable. This one has to come down to a tie. There was the capture of Osama Bin Laden and the beginning of Dick Cheney’s war crimes trial in Nuremberg.

March:Due to the sudden increase in the tax base when Hasbro, Nestle, and DC Comics all move their headquarters to Charleston, Mayor Jones was able to repeal the user fee. Unfortunately, he doubled the amount of times that Kanawha Boulevard was closed for no good reason. 

April:The highlight of April was easily the announcement that Danny Boyd’s book, “Death Falcon Zero Versus the Zombie Slug Lords” was awarded a Pulitzer Prize.

There was also the reappearance of The Mothman in Point Pleasant. This, coupled with the word “Beware” being scrawled on bridges and overpasses in the area caused quite a bit of anxiety in the Mountain State.

May:The coolest thing in May was when miraculously, Steve and Barry’s was bought from bankruptcy and reopened all their stores. That took our minds off the nastiness of the bread line riots in California.

June:Getting personal for a moment, the highlight of June for me was the day-long all ages Radio Free Charleston FestivALL show featuring The Concept, The Ghosts of Now, Captain Crash and The Beauty Queen From Mars, Dog Soldier, Whistlepunk, Tofujitsu, the reunited Feast of Stephen, the reunited Go Van Gogh, and The Hellblinki Sextet, all opening for our co-headliners DEVO and The Aquabats.

July:One more personal highlight for me. The week of July 4th. Radio Free Charleston finally got the cover of the print Gazz. Too bad we had to move to CBS to get any print coverage.

August:Everyone will remember where they were on that fateful day in August when the starships landed on the White House lawn. At first, it scared the crap out of everyone. But we soon realized the visitors meant us no harm and they only wanted to help the human race. Plus they brought us new HDTV technology and really cool video-games.

September:Radio Free Charleston premieres on CBS television to record ratings. The first episode features Whistlepunk, The Concept, The No Pants Players, animation from Frank Panucci, and fart jokes. Broadcast television is saved with the arrival of this bold, new concept. The Charleston music scene explodes worldwide.


November:The nation’s first cold fusion nuclear power plant goes on-line in Logan County, lowering everyone’s electric bills ninety percent and making West Virginia the top electricity producer in the world. Don Blankenship files for bankruptcy and takes a job as a manager at Wendy’s.

December:Well, we were nervous for a few days there, but once the translation difficulties were ironed out on the day after Christmas 2009, our new alien friends explained that “To Serve Man” was NOT a cookbook and really, honestly was just a guide to help us out. The  economy booms with the influx of new alien technologies, and the first space cruiser filled with tourists from Earth leave to journey to the home-world of our new alien friends.

Of course, I don’t have to tell you all of this because you lived through it. But 2009 sure may well have been THE BEST YEAR EVER.

Tomorrow, a long rambling post about comic books.

1 Comment

  1. Jose Francis

    ooooooooooooooo ya!

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