Best Of 2016

Best Of 2016: SPAGHETTI


It’s no secret that Americans love spaghetti and crave it day and night. From Italian restaurants to the cute little trattoria down the street, when it comes to dinner there’s only one game in town: It’s called spaghetti and its rules are simple: Have fun and fill your belly with my wonderful noodles. Touchdown! Game, set, and match. Advantage: Spaghetti.

2016 was no different.

Here are the TOP TEN SPAGHETTIS OF 2016.

10. Dry spaghetti

9. Pretty nice spaghetti

8. “Mmm, say, I like this spaghetti”

7. Humble spaghetti

6. When bae says, “Do you want to know something?” And you’re like, “Okay,” and she (or he says) “My father owns a spaghetti factory … that means we get unlimited spaghetti for life!!!” And your tummy is so happy 🙂

5. When you cook whole wheat spaghetti

4. (TIE) Midnight spaghetti / Spaghetti technologies

3. Different kinds of spaghetti

2. Fantastic spaghetti

1. Perfect spaghetti

Best Of 2016: SCANDALS

“Get ready for blast-off!”

Scandals are the rocket fuel that shoots our prurient interest through the atmosphere of the everyday, all the way up to the stars. And it’s even more fun when stars are actually involved in the scandals! (Movie stars, that is.)


It’s these stumblings and snafus that bring even the “high and mighty” back down to earth, where they land with a “plop” that reminds us: “All humans are flawed, and no man shall stand above me in judgment, who has not also pooped his own pants on occasion,” as the Bible surely says somewhere in one of its many pages.

And 2016 was no different. Some days it seemed the scandals were almost getting out of control. We saw entertainment scandals, financial scandals, and even — at the highest level — scandals in the art world. When it came to 2016, the only real scandal was how many scandals there were.

Here are the TOP TEN SCANDALS OF 2016:

10. Horrible scandals

9. Weird scandals

8. Boring scandals you can’t understand, but will eventually impact your life

7. Foreign scandals

6. Female-friendly scandals

5. Historical scandals

4. Scandals that come out of nowhere

3. Scandals that were with us all along

2. Terrific scandals

1. “Get me a list of the hottest scandals! Oooh, this one is the very best!”

Best Of 2016: FASHION

From the runways of Milan to the edgy sidewalks of Bushwick, from the streets of Tokyo to the boulevards of Paris, fashion was all about raw energy in 2016 — and raw energy is always where it’s at.

Fashion is the most intimate of art forms: It literally “clothes” us in creativity. Whether it’s a new scarf from a fashion-forward boutique or a handsome blazer scored from a vintage shop, if it’s fashion you’re after, then you’ll always find what you’re looking for … after a fashion.


And 2016 was no different. We saw styles that separated the men from the boys … the bridesmaids from the brides … the goats from the ghosts (this is fashion-insider lingo, I bet). The point is, when it comes to stylish clothes? Fashion is still the only game in town.

Here are the TOP TEN FASHIONS OF 2016:

10. Raggedy-ass fashions no sane person would ever wear, i.e. the definition of “hot mess,” i.e. don’t burn your fingers on that mess — it’s THAT hot — Tsssss! (sizzle sound) … ACK! I tried to warn you! Now your fingers are burned and I need to drive you to the hospital — my soup will get cold on account of this inconvenience! All because of that stank-fart outfit nobody would ever wear … I hereby take a lifelong pledge of “extreme nudity” in protest of these failed fashions … chicken noodle soup

9. Decent fashions

8. Men’s fashions

7. Comfortable fashions

6. (TIE) Shoes / Dressy women’s fashions

5. Red-carpet looks showcasing blue-collar authenticity*

4. Mom and Dad got dressed up to go out to dinner

3. When the end comes, just make sure I look good and am wearing my FINAL FASHIONS

2. Fashions we can believe in

1. No joke? The greatest fashions ever created, bar none, gold medal for these fashions

(*This description came to me in a burst of inspiration, I think I have cracked the code of fashion with this entry.)

Best Of 2016: TRENDS

Keeping up with trends is a full-time job. Fortunately, this job comes with benefits: The benefits of being in-the-know, up-to-date, and cutting-edge cool. Trends keep us grounded in the now while flying into the future. It’s the best of both worlds, and that’s a pretty good place to be.


2016 was a groundbreaking year for trends. As our planet continued to flatten thanks to the telecommunication revolution, we saw trends moving at the speed of light, which meant we were more connected than ever. The currency of trends became our lingua franca, and the language of cool was hotter than ever. If you want to know what separates us from the lesser animals, the answer is staring you in the face — at the latest sneaker store, on the hippest web sites, inside the most exclusive clubs that are totally lit and on fleek to the highest degree … it’s all about TRENDS.

Let’s celebrate our ingenuity and our reckless spirit of creativity, a spirit which defined 2016. Let’s talk trends. Here are the TOP TEN TRENDS OF 2016:

10. Shoes

9. Music

8. Food

7. Culture

6. Memes

5. The hottest trends

4. Trending topics

3. “Hey — you got your trend in my style! But don’t worry, it’s allllll good.”

2. A friend in need needs a trend indeed, so don’t end the trends, friends? It all depends…

1. Hip trends

Best Of 2016: SEX

There’s an old saying on the internet: “Sex sells.” And is it any wonder? Our natural, beautiful bodies have always given us pleasure and titillation. Forbidden desires erupt into passionate flames when we take off our clothes and admire our birthday suits.


Our culture reflects this fascination with sex, and 2016 saw more sexual imagery and adult themes than any year in history. And thanks to cable television and the internet, sex has never been easier to enjoy from afar.

In fact, why don’t we engage in a little “adult role play” to underscore this point? I’ll be the judge, and you be the accused criminal who has been charged to appear in my court.

ME (Judge): Do I see the defendant before me?

YOU (nervous): Yes, your honor.

ME (Judge): And do you know about … sex?

YOU (blushing): Yes I do your honor.

ME (Judge): And how do you plead???

YOU (going crazy with desire): Tee-hee, I am guilty, guilty as charged! Guilty of being naughty and knowing about sex!!!

ME (Judge): You must pay a substantial fine.


Whether it’s an erotic encounter, a touch of silk, or a candlelit bubblebath that includes full coitus, sex takes us out of the day-to-day and into the realm of romance. So let’s get a little frisky and celebrate the BEST SEX OF 2016:

10. Hardcore sex

9. Erotic sex

8. Pretty good sex

7. (TIE) Sex in movies and books / Reproductive sex

6. Adult themes

5. Wondrous sex

4. Sexual encounters that will leave you breathless

3. Humanoid sex that confirms our biological functions

2. Mind-blowing sex

1. The most fantastic sex in human history

Best Of 2016: LETTUCE

Let’s face it: America’s love affair with lettuce isn’t ending anytime soon.

Our humble, leafy green friend is always there for us — through thick and thin, in sickness and in health, doing its duty, a devoted servant to our nutritional desires. Simply put, lettuce is America’s favorite food and probably one of our main crops. And we’re all the better for this simple fact.

bestof2016_lettuceIs it any wonder lettuce is known as “The Queen of Vegetables?” Far from it: It’s no wonder at all.

And when it comes to lettuce, 2016 was no different. From chic salads to humble piles of lettuce, if there’s one thing we learned, it’s that lettuce is always terrific. In this crazy, mixed up salad we call life, the winner is always lettuce. Every time.

And if you disagree? Well, you’ve got another “lettuce thing” coming.

So let’s take a moment to celebrate the best of lettuce. Here are the TOP TEN LETTUCES OF 2016.

10. Salad lettuces

9. Boutique lettuces

8. Amazing lettuces

7. “Let us” enjoy some fresh lettuce

6. Lettuce that speaks to the way we live now

5. Mmm, lettuce

4. Some of the freshest lettuce

3. Modern lettuces

2. (TIE) Crispy, ice-cold lettuce / Colorful lettuce

1. Lettuce that brings out the best in all of us




Restaurants are the backbone of the American food economy, and a crucial element to our shared love of eating out. It seems you can’t walk (or drive) more than two blocks before running into a restaurant — I mean, literally running through the doors of a restaurant — and shouting, “OOH I’m so hungry, let me order some food from you, restaurant!” And then? Menu in hand, you make your choices … the server brings you the food … you eat it … MISSION ACCOMPLISHED … you pay your bill … and then the food passes through your body and comes out the hole in your bottom.

That, my friends, is the “restaurant lifestyle.” It’s a rush unlike anything else, and you can only find it … at the restaurant you went to just then.

Here are the TOP TEN RESTAURANTS OF 2016:

10. Indian restaurants

9. French restaurants

8. New restaurants

7. (TIE) Cutting-edge restaurants / Tiny restaurants

6. Restaurants that have never been better

5. All-you-can-eat restaurants

4. My favorite restaurants

3. “I’ll meet you at the restaurant”

2. Restaurants where the chefs look like Hell’s Angels but they know all about where their carrots were grown, like anybody gives a shit

1. Restaurants that are the greatest restaurants the world has ever seen

Best Of 2016: Television

If it’s true, as the critics say, that we’re in the Golden Age of Television, then 2016 was the jewel in the crown. From cutting-edge comedies to edge-of-your-seat procedurals, from limited-run premium TV events to what-the-hell-is-this clusterfarts streaming on Netflix, 2016 was the year television truly swung for the fences … and hit a home run every single time.

Hispanic couple watching television

Is television an art form? It’s too soon to tell. But for now, let’s pretend it is — and celebrate these achievements in the medium.


10. Pretty good television shows

9. Non-boring television shows

8. The television shows everyone is talking about

7. Television shows only the COOL and SMART people are talking about

6. Women and men are friends on television

5. Shows you can watch on your new widescreen TV

4. “Did you hear?” “About what?” “The new show.” “Oh, yeah — I DID.”

3. Shows about robots or alien creatures with fifty things happening at once and also there’s a parallel universe inside an old shed with ghosts or androids or who knows what and you can’t understand anything but you have to pretend to understand so your friends don’t think you’re a T.V.D.F.T.T. (Television Dummy From Toilet Town)

2. Television stories that pass the highest standards of quality

1. The finest television shows ever made


My Year-End Lists

Although 2016 has been one of the most dispiriting, disorienting, and disgusting years in modern history, there has been one bright spot: The knowledge that my year-end lists are coming. At first, I was so disgusted with this year I thought I wouldn’t make my lists. But then, I used my intelligence to determine that my lists have never been needed more.

They say it’s always darkest before dawn, which means my lists will be the bright new dawn. (Because it’s so dark right now it’s insane.) DO NOT DESPAIR. These lists will be the greatest lists we have ever seen — in fact, some say they will be the greatest lists ever conceived by humanity — and so I will share them with you so that you will remember not to give up hope, and that some things are worth fighting for: My lists.

My lists will begin soon.


David Rees

a.k.a. “The King of Lists, Now and Forever”