Dear reader,

Another year has rolled by, and what a dismal year it’s been – not just on account of the advent of The Confounding Variable, but with the company’s stock prices dipping into the negative, a Pulitzer Prize as elusive as ever despite weeks of the most profound online journalism the world has ever seen, and nary an SPJ Award to crown the efforts of our all-star lineup of (lightly) seasoned journalists.

But first, after that, a big thank you to all our regular readers: Paul, Matt, Geoff, and Kim Jong-un—we would still exist without you, but it wouldn’t be the same. We’d have to update our mailing list for spam.

Some of the office highlights this year include the untimely death of Pablo’s humble desk plant, a Venus fly trap cut off in its prime by a fly that appears to have been the object of punitive measures aimed at abbreviating its caper through some cocaine of unknown origin. (The erudite reader will already be apprised of Pablo’s “The Death of Venus: A Metaphorical Journey into the Altogether Misunderstood Life of Don Pablo”, written in honour of his late father and serialised earlier this year in the The Bogotá Post.)

There were also the approximately 365 afternoons when no one had anything of importance to write and we closed up early. Not to overlook the fateful fire drill in our former office space when the inspiration came to Steve to test the limits of the system with 85-odd kg of napalm he’d won in a drinking contest with a Croatian mercenary. Only the Stetson, as he later related to us excitedly, saved his hair.

We’re not expecting 2017 to be much different. Another year in the journalistic undergrowth, languishing under the cruel indifference of a potential readership who would rather take out the trash. We love them, but let’s face it: why would they back us in 2017, unless it was for a compulsory school project on evaluating the reliability of web sources?

But we press on. When Churchill was arrested by those famous words, “If I were your wife, I’d put aresenic in your tea,” he calmly retorted, “Madam, if I were your husband, I would drink it.” So we too keep a stiff upper lip in the face of damnably depressing and fruitless prospects for the new year, being unable to look back to better days in other careers, but only forward into the murky gloom of obscurity. Tally ho!

Irredeemably yours,

Matt Confudere