Analyze This (List)

It’s tantamount to rubbernecking at a traffic accident. It’s those incessant, insipid lists that are end-of-year media staples. From the practical “Top Uses for Duct Tape” and the pretentious “Most Outrageous Sauvignon Blancs” to the pointless “Best ‘Reality TV’ Moments” and the pederastic “Worst Priests of ’02.” Whether out of simple curiosity or sheer voyeurism, we seemingly can’t help ourselves.

Exhibit A: the recent Gallup poll ostensibly determining America’s “most admired” woman.

The predictable winner: Hillary Rodham Clinton, who might not have been her husband’s first choice. Predictable first and second runners-up: First Hostess Oprah Winfrey and First Lady Laura Bush.

But here’s what rewards the voyeur in us all. Jennifer Lopez, who ranked sixth, finished ahead of Elizabeth Dole and Condoleeza Rice.

But it could have been worse, as it were. The late Mother Teresa is no longer eligible to finish behind J-Lo.

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