Thursday, November 19, 2009

Good-bye noughties

Next month the first decade of the twentieth century ends. Yes, the days of the noughties are numbered. Ten years ago we were all getting ready for the millennium bug. The "experts" were predicting a computer meltdown at midnight on New Year's Eve 1999. What a fizzer that was! Remember? Probably not, it was such a non-event. Then there was SARS. And then Bird Flu. This year's armageddon is (or was meant to be) Swine Flu. Anybody like to hazard a guess at what it will be next year? Scaremongering is now big business and we all love nothing like a good scare. Happily the media is happy to oblige with another beat-up.

9/11 was also part of the noughties. Now that was big! Funny that none of our experts saw it coming. They were too busy whipping up artificial crises. Ditto the great financial meltdown. How many economists are there in the world? And how many saw that one coming? Why do economists still have jobs?

So how was it for you? The noughties, I mean. That time since the race narrowly escaped the millenium bug wipeout, almost ten years ago. I reckon the noughties were, all in all, not too bad. Technology delivered us some cool new ideas and gadgets: social networking, iPods, blogging, Google Earth. If the 90s was the Microsoft decade, the noughties belong to Google. In the arts, we saw the return of kid lit' with the boy wizard. The greatest film event was the Lord of the Rings. Musically I think it was an average ten years. A period of consolidation without any major new stylistic developments. Check out NME's top 100 for the decade here. We also saw contemporary visual art experience a great bubble of interest. Maybe the decade belonged to the visual arts. Everybody wanted a piece of the action. Prices soared before falling back again after the GFC hit. What the next decade brings, only fools would dare predict. Do you want to go first ...

Photo: Pavlunka

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