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Dec. 29--FROM LARRY ELLISON'S cloak-and-dagger Dumpster-diving to the culinary thriller known as Vealgate, from the Y2K bug that never was to the power shortage that currently is, the year 2000 had more than its share of funny business and freakish bits of pseudo-news.
Reporters dutifully and soberly recorded every last factoid. Now, it's time for us to step back and cast an arched eyebrow on the year just past.
As we roll into 2001 with recession jitters, stocks in the tank and cyber-lords taking themselves way too seriously, someone needs to put the "silly" back in Silicon Valley. And that's why Swing Shift is presenting the Murky Awards 2000, an annual compendium of the business world's dastardly, disastrous, dubious and just plain dumb.
And the envelope please ...
NOW WHAT DO WE DO WITH 40 CASES OF TOP RAMEN: In 1999, the United States spends $100 billion to battle the Y2K bug. Governments mobilize. Investors stock up on everything from gold bullion to water jugs and Port-a-potties. But when the calendar turns over to the year 2000, you know what goes wrong? Nothing. No planes fall from the skies. No terrorists attack Seattle's Space Needle. Even traffic lights work and Social Security checks arrive on time. The lesson: Get your disaster thrills at the movies.
TALKIN' TRASH WITH LARRY: Oracle Corp. Chairman Larry Ellison staunchly defends his company's hiring of an East Coast detective agency to investigate groups that supported rival Microsoft Corp. during its antitrust trial, calling the snooping a "public service." The investigation reportedly included a $1,200 offer …