The 20 Most-Read Village Voice Stories of 2010
This really felt like a breakout year at the Voice, with our big NYPD investigative series, the Runnin' Scared, Sound of the City, and Fork in the Road blogs blowing up, and, um, you know, we're still in print and stuff.
Can you guess which Voice story made the biggest splash this year? Before we reveal that, we'll remind you what topped the charts the last two years, when we actually started counting up all these pageview things everyone seems so obsessed with.
In 2008, our most-read story was David Mamet's surprising conservative coming-out party, "Why I Am No Longer a Brain-Dead Liberal."
For 2009, it seemed notable that a simple blog post outpaced everything we actually put in the print newspaper (a milestone?). Readers are still happily lapping up screenwriter Josh Olson's stemwinder, "I Will Not Read Your Fucking Script."
And now, without further ado, here are the 20 stories of 2010 that you, the readers, found most fascinating:
Our legendary food writer Robert Sietsema starts things off with this, er, delicious takedown at the Fork in the Road blog: meals aimed at tourists clogging Times Square.
Times Square must be the bad-eats capital of the city, because every abject chain, no matter how awful, has pitched its tent there. If you stand in the center -- newly appointed with outdoor tables and chairs to encourage lingering, say, five minutes over your Big Mac -- you'll see tourists pass by wolfing down some of the most disgusting food on the planet.
Readers, naturally, had plenty of suggestions of their own. Bleeccch!
When Robert Sietsema noticed that the Chicago Tribune had compiled a list of 10 often mispronounced food words, he decided to do the Trib one better and provide a longer list at our food blog, Fork in the Road. "Coq au vin" made the list (co-ooh-vin), as well as "huitlacoche" (wheet-lah-KOH-chay), "muffuletta" (MOO-fa-la-Tuh), and "Pouilly-Fuissé" (poo-yee fwee-SAY). Readers responded with suggestions of hundreds more. "Mascarpone," anyone?
In November, we ran a cover story, "Shock the Junkie," that described the latest debate about Ibogaine, a miracle drug with the potential to cure hard-core drug addicts, but which also comes with a controversial hallucinogenic trip of its own. Researchers are working to produce a non-trippy version of the substance, but as one expert told us, outright cures like Ibogaine are less profitable for pharmaceutical companies than the drugs patients take repeatedly over the course of perhaps their entire lives, and that never cure them. Curious about that statement, Jason Parham looked into which were the 5 most profitable drugs on the market (Lipitor, Nexium, Plavix, Advair, and Seroquel). Sure enough, none of them ever cures the condition they are prescribed to treat. Readers of Jason's Runnin' Scared item were alternately outraged and nonplussed, as the short piece spread around the nets.
Was Foster Kamer really only here for nine months in 2010? Here's part of the path of destruction he left in his wake: at the height of debate over the proposed downtown Islamic community center, he grabbed this killer image put together by Tumblr's editorial director, TopherChris, and then went on a patented Kamer rant:
Maybe we'll care what you have to say when you stop bothering us for directions in the subway on how to get to Ground Zero so you can go there and buy some dumb, tacky knickknack you can take home and give to friends to let them know that you spent money on a shake-a-snow where a few thousand people died. Maybe then. But probably not. Shut up, go away, and also, stop lying, or at least tell your politicians to stop lying. It might help you recognize the truth, which is that you're wrong, and you're attacking vital American freedoms by going against this Mosque. The truth is that you're terrorists in your own right. You are striking against America by going against this mosque. You are, in effect, almost as bad as the ones who killed people on 9/11. Okay, not quite, not really, but kind of, because you're fighting against what 9/11 victims died for: religious freedom, which said terrorists don't have and don't want anyone else to have.
But now you have a map to see how wrong you are, okay? Now: Fuck you. Fuck you and shut up, you assholes. Shut up and leave New York alone.
As one reader put it: "Someone NEEDED to write this. Thank you."