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I Believe That the World Will End

by on October 6, 2015

I believe that the world will end tomorrow, Wednesday, October 7th. It has been predicted, using math and unique theological interpretations, and more math. It will probably happen while I am stuck in traffic. In the area where I live, there is constant construction, so I am always stuck in traffic. I am sorry for the construction people who will now never finish their projects, due to the imminent apocalypse. Good effort, guys! Staying at your posts right up to the End, and all that.

I believed that the world would end on Y2K. There were reliable books on the subject. Computer clocks everywhere would click over from ’99 to ’00, and mistakenly assume that we are now in 1900, and chaos would ensue. ATMs would fail. So would pacemakers and gigapets. I distinctly remember checking my digital watch to see if it was still running when it clicked over into the millennium. (It was).

I believed that the world would end in May 2011. May 21st, specifically, right after Eliza Doolittle Day. (No connection, as far as I know. The only interest in theology Eliza had was being advised by Henry Higgins to practice proper speech exercises instead of praying, as she would “get further with the Lord if you learn not to offend His ears!”.) As I remember, it was supposed to happen at 6 PM, and this went by timezones, so Australia and New Zealand were first in line for the Big Show. I had always wanted to see Australia and New Zealand. Sydney, the place where they filmed Lord of the Rings and the Narnia films…Melbourne, where the depressing post-nuclear war novel On the Beach was set. (Spoiler: everyone dies. This happens a lot in post-nuclear fiction, I notice).

Then, when Australia and New Zealand were not dissolved in fire and brimstone, I believed that the May 21st prediction was wrong. There was an error of maths. It was actually October 21st of that year. This was in the middle of my first semester of law school. Given the choice between the End of Days and law school exams, on the whole, I think I would prefer the End.

I believed that the world would end in December 2012. The Mayan calendar ended at that date, and when your calendar runs out, all existence runs out. It stands to reason. There was also a movie about it, starring Woody Harrelson and Chiwetel Ejiofor. The Washington Monument fell over, among other things, and Yellowstone blew up. Happily, the kid that plays Little Shawn Spencer from Psych survived.

I believe that when the Lord said to the disciples quite plainly in the Gospel of Matthew that he doesn’t know the day or the hour of the Second Coming, that only the Father knows, that he immediately followed that up with “Just kidding, boys!” It is absolutely possible to calculate the End Times. This removes the element of surprise. By simply making note of astronomical phenomena, United Nations conferences on the environment, and experiments with particles like the Higgs boson, it is obvious that we can know exactly when it all winds up. And it’s tomorrow, as of this writing.Β  Wednesday. I never did like Wednesdays.Β  But at any event, math doesn’t lie. The world will end on Wednesday. Just like it ended in 1844.

This month at yeah write, they’ve started a new nonfiction feature exploring certain literary devices. They began with irony. Irony is fun. πŸ™‚


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  1. DCJ permalink

    Clever and funny. Nice playful use of random detail. I like it. Cheers.

  2. Haha! I remember all of these too. Well, except 1844. You should do nonfiction more often!

    • I just might. I really enjoyed writing this piece. Not to mention revisiting all the memories of past imminent apocalypses. πŸ™‚

  3. candidcarrie permalink

    And in my head I’m singing, In the year 2525 …

  4. I always thought the world would end on a Thursday, I never could get the hang of Thursday’s πŸ˜‰ Well done, this was highly entertaining.

  5. This was fun to read. Great use of the irony prompt! πŸ™‚

  6. Hah! I remember the absolute kerfuffle surrounding Y2K. And the 2012 end of the world was exciting. It was meant to happen 2 days after we moved to the US. Admittedly, it felt about as tumultuous, but nope, no end times to be seen. Love the way you used irony, it made for such an entertaining read.

  7. Playful and biting, all at the same time. Well played.

  8. Christine permalink

    Hey Michael, just a thought: you should do this more often. You know I’m a fan of your fiction, and I love how you kept your unique voice and brand of humor in this essay. Absolutely wonderful.

  9. 2012 was supposed to end on my birthday. I didn’t celebrate early that year. I enjoyed your voice in this piece, Michael. I agree that you should write more nonfiction alongside your space otters.

  10. I’m always intrigued by these end of the world predictions. On the one hand I don’t want to get too wrapped up in them but then I start to second guess myself and think I might be foolish. So far so good though! Glad to see you on nonfic – I like it!

  11. Myself I would like to know, so I can get enough beer to watch it in comfort.

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