Compiling the usual end-of-year list has been harder than usual this time. I’ve been more consistent, it seems. That means that this year’s bests are not as good as previous years’, but also that the worst are not as terrible. As a side effect, the list was not only more difficult to compile, but probably also less interesting. You can’t win them all.
The worst of 2023
I shouldn’t have. I really shouldn’t have. There was not enough to go on, and so I simply shouldn’t have gone. Instead I rode Sam Lloyd’s magnificent coattails. Weak.
This is one of those things that are sort of bad on purpose, but, having ventured in the genre, I can say that you should probably stay away. Things that are bad on purpose are still bad.
This particular post feels like the perfect representative of what went wrong on the blog this year: it’s not particularly badly written, it’s not particularly lacking — it’s just not particularly anything.
Maybe we shouldn’t have had a fairy tale after all. The stereotype is that they always have a happy ending, but that stereotype is very much wrong and anyone who has read Andersen’s Little mermaid can confirm. Or anyone who read this particular post.
The best of 2023
A whole episode of a television series dedicated to chess — that usually means a lot to talk about. And there was. And I did. Relatively well even.
In this music video, Jan Smit was exposed as one of the worst blasphemers against Caissa to ever appear on this blog — and that’s saying something. But I gave him and the abomination he created a thorough thrashing.
Very often, we see a mystery being solved on this blog. This time, we saw a mystery come to light: how can the same person who finds a mate in six not know what moves are legal and what aren’t? That unusual change is enough to earn it a spot on this list.
It’s always nice when I can do better than my subject. Perhaps I cannot sing better, perhaps I cannot write better music, but at least what I wrote in this post makes sense — and that’s more than I can say of the lyrics to this song.