The problem with assessing the cultural evolution of the past 10 years is that, essentially, everything has happened, and usually all at once. Big stars got bigger, yet at the same time became irrelevant. Books soared to new creative and business heights, yet crashed into artistic and financial oblivion.
Guitar and dance music coexisted, fought, won, lost and ignored each other — usually in a single week. We all went out much more, stayed in much more, watched more TV, more theatre, more everything, all the while going old-school, new-school, pre-school and too cool for school. The hairstyles alone defied rational understanding.