Like fruitcake and drunk driving, predictions are one of those bad holiday traditions we just can’t shake. This year, the unyielding urge to predict is particularly accute because, based on the troubles of the past few years, we either wish harder than ever for good things or are expecting our country’s dilemma to get much worse. So here are my predictions for media 2009. You be the judge of whether they’re good or not:
1) NBC cancels its entire prime-time lineup after being overtaken by Spike.
2) Gannett and other mega-media monsters declare bankruptcy, flee the country and seek asylum in Costa Rica. After setting up shop there, local residents soon complain “Who is Lindsay Lohan?”
3) Based on her newfound popularity in Costa Rica, Lindsay Lohan gets her own series- on NBC.
4) “American Idol”, “Dancing with the Stars” and “America’s Got Talent” produce special “Utah editions” profiling future Beehive state stars ranging from Provo all the way to Draper.
5) Patterned after their deal to exclusively carry Notre Dame football, NBC purchases the Chicago Cubs from financially-doomed Tribune to round out their new prime-time lineup. Cubs hats now sport a peacock with a broken bat.
6) XM/Sirius survive but Oprah, Bob Dylan and other expensive talent are replaced by traveling cast of “Wicked.”
7) Citing high costs, Utah and BYU cancel annual football “holy war” and stage refrigerator pulling contest in Provo parking lot. Owned by refrigerator maker GE, NBC purchases exclusive rights.
8) President Obama replaces Gayle King as Oprah’s best friend and gives his weekly news conference on her show- right after Dr. Oz’ “Menopause Moment.”
9) Every magazine in America goes out of business. The ugly end comes when Guns & Ammo goes berserk at a Borders in Champaign, Illinois and shoots 500 People. Test scores among America’s teens jump.
10) Schreiner Productions earns millions and produces its first major TV program: a reality show where corporate TV and newspaper employees outwit, outplay and outlast the companies they work for. The losers must keep their jobs. The winner gets a blog. Thursdays at 9 p.m. on… you know.