Are you one of the few people who managed to get through this most twisted past year without asking yourself—as well as anyone foolish enough to attend dinner parties or stand at water coolers—the year’s most compelling question: “Just what is happening to the world?” If you are, you’re either blessed or in a denial of Reagan-era proportions.

The editors of POZ are neither blessed nor in denial. In a perhpas futile attempt to impose order on (or at least inject some much-needed humor into) the loopy freakishness of 1995, we decided to tackle the beast head-on and create the first annual POZ Honors, a retrospective nod to the past year, stripped to its raw truth. After all, AIDS was not exempt from the bizarre and absurd events that characterized much of 1995. AIDS even intersected some of the year’s most celebrated absurdities: O.J.’s father revealed to be a drag queen who died of AIDS and Hugh Grant’s trip to Sunset Boulevard led LA police to suggest he take an HIV test.

For two months, Editorial Assistant David Tinmouth pored over magazines, newspapers and microfilm to refresh our often willfully repressed memories. As usual, finding the problems was a lot easier than finding the solutions. But, oh, what a find! Sex, drugs, murder, mayhem. Heroes, Hollywood, good intentions, bad politics. Who said a magazine about AIDS couldn’t cover the whole wacky world?