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Seven bang-for-the-buck newsmakers of 2022

Comedian Vikram Poddar takes a look at some world figures who made the headlines over the last year

Vikram Poddar | Published 31.12.22, 02:53 PM
(L-R) Malaika Arora, Elon Musk and Lionel Messi, caught Vikram Poddar's eye this year. among others

(L-R) Malaika Arora, Elon Musk and Lionel Messi, caught Vikram Poddar's eye this year. among others

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Sam Bankman-Fried

SBF made Nirav Choksi look like he was just vacationing in the Bahamas, like Vijay Mallya was Mother Teresa. Perhaps, what we really need is an SBF token. It suddenly declines in value to zero, but at least you have a great NFT of SBF at the end of it. His girlfriend, on other hand, seemed to be making voodoo dolls of his NFTs given how she threw him under the bus for a plea bargain. But, for a while, they were the Bunty and Babli of the cryptoverse.

Elon Musk

If I had a blue tick for every time his tweets kicked off a storm, I would be the most verified person in the world. In 2022, Elon Musk was the brand ambassador for the Shah Rukh Khan classic Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa’ But perhaps Parag Agrawal might liken him more to the Shah Rukh from Darr with lines like “I love you T…t….t….t….Twitter” — which is what his Tesla shareholders needed to hear, but the driverless car maker is truly running driverless right now and so is the stock. Maybe things will improve once his Mars moves out of his… Venus.

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Malaika Arora

Malaika Arora became the star of the new SNL sketch ‘Move in with Malaika’. Which is rather moving when you consider that Malaika has no idea she is in a sitcom. She is literally The Truman Show in real life. Or, as Jim Carrey would call it, ‘The Eternal Sunburn of a Spotlight Mind’. Her epic dance-off with Nora Fatehi was the face-off between Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson in Zoolander, except that the protagonists have no idea they are stars in a fashion parody movie. But enough about Salman Khan’s next film.

Lionel Messi

The French can be forgiven for refusing to say ‘merci’ to Lionel Messi for their soul-crushing defeat in the World Cup Final. And, Salt Bae found out the hard way that his antics are not worth the salt. He has been banned from so many events that he has literally been given the ‘golden glove’ by everybody like the Argentinian goalkeeper. But Messi brought the whole of Argentina out on the streets, and for a change it was not because of a coup. Messi is the thing dreams are made of. But perhaps in the football match in heaven no one will be asking, “Who is Pele?”

Jerome Powell

The governor of the US Federal Reserve had the global economy dancing to his tune as he kept scoring goal after goal from the inflation penalty corner. Many an equity and debt investor caught with their pants down tried to claim an off-side (also known as recession). Powell would have none of it as he kept raising interest rates at a pace not even matched by Jenna ‘Wednesday’ Ortega’s Instagram following. One expects global markets next year to play to ‘The Addams Family’ theme.

Vladimir Putin

Putin made all the Mission: Impossible villains come to light with his relentless pounding of Ukraine (something Indian children might describe as ‘childhood’). His attacks left the world supply chain in tatters, the US dollar on the moon, and an inflation in your trauma therapy sessions. As a cold winter sets over Europe with equally hot natural gas prices, expect 2023 to literally open with a bang should he finally push the red button. One hopes that like most red buttons that make a lot of promises, it will also malfunction and blow up on the user when actually put into execution. But enough about West Bengal.

Xi Jinping

The Chinese premier put a large part of the country into a Zero Covid Lockdown. He even got rid of his predecessor without any Hu or cry. Unfortunately, Covid cannot just be escorted out of the building like a fired Twitter employee. From what seemed like a 0-0 scoreline, Covid is now scoring penalty shots all across China as the CCP tries to play goalkeeper to defend its citizens and the world from news about the virus. Unfortunately, in this match it is the virus giving the golden glove to the goal keepers. We hope not to Xi too much of either of them next year

Let’s connect in 2023 and see how many of our new year resolutions turn out to be self-goals.

Happy New Year!

Last updated on 31.12.22, 02:55 PM
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