William F. Buckley Jr. died on February 27th, 2008. On The Daily Beast, son Christopher (Thank You for Smoking, Little Green Men), a wonderful writer in his own right, wonders what his father would have made of the year that was:

My father, William F. Buckley, Jr, died a year ago this week, and I thought to mark the occasion in this space, normally devoted to making raspberries at the cosmos and endorsing Democrats for high office.

I’ve found myself reaching for the phone so many times since last February 27, not just to hear his voice, but to ask him what — on earth — he would have made of (in no particular order): Sarah Palin, the future of the GOP, John Thaine’s $35,000 commode, these trillion-dollar “stimulus” programs, Senator Roland Burris, Caroline Kennedy’s about-face, Judd Gregg’s about-face, the on-going nationalization of the U.S. banking industry, and President Obama as he deals with one of the worst in-boxes in U.S. history.

And — stylishly, beautifully, publicly — Buckley misses his dad and makes us miss him, too:

My father was a man of devout, unflinching, sometimes exasperating Catholic faith. He believed absolutely in heaven and hell. I lost (or misplaced) my faith, but I find myself on this anniversary hoping that I’m wrong, and that he’s there, correcting God’s grammar. I have on my desk an editorial cartoon showing him arriving at the Pearly Gates, St. Peter whispering to an angel, “I’m going to need a bigger dictionary.”

It’s a lovely piece and it’s here.

Less lovely, but from the same publication (because The Daily Beast is nothing if not comfortably all over the place) Dale Hrabi takes a silly but somehow satisfying look at the “10 Most Horrendous Oscar Gowns in History.”

As Oscars coverage rolls on, all eyes turn to fashion — and then quickly glaze over as the inevitable parade of safe, beige gowns unfolds. Discerning style lovers sigh, and unreflective tabloid editors ask themselves why, yet again, actress after actress has chosen to dress, unremarkably, in the color of gruel.

That piece is here.

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