Doomsday: Were those Mayans right?
Gary B. Gray
Dec 19, 2012 at 7:49 PM
End of the world?
Bring it on.
As you know from very well-informed sources such as the folks who program high-quality television spook sludge and Armageddon follies on the History and Discovery channels, it seems the Mayan calendar apocalyptic scenario actually has affected some of our society’s hard-of-thinking, causing them to look to the skies and moan “the end is nigh.”
This pronouncement is made with all due respect to the things that could make our universe go “poof.” You know, the Sun exploding, God’s fury, gingivitis.
By the way, Armageddon is Greek for “I’m really tired of paying taxes, Arby’s doesn’t serve the Chicken Cordon Bleu chicken sandwich anymore, it costs $397,958 to get a root canal, so why bother with all this.”
At least we live in America where we’re free to be a bit kooky.
Chinese police this week detained more than 500 people from a fringe Christian group for spreading rumors about the world’s impending end on Friday. The detentions preceded Dec. 21 – a date some say the Mayans prophesied would be the end of the world and which was the subject of the apocalyptic movie “2012.”
Doomsday rumors arose when some folks with a lot of time on their hands got hold of the Mayan calendar concept in the 1980s and 1990s. Either misunderstanding or intentionally ignoring the Mayans’ cyclical view of time, these adventurers interpreted a major cycle in the 5,125-year-old Mayan Long Count calendar, a period known as the 13th Baktun, in a biblical way. In other words, as an apocalyptic, life-ending event.
Those wanting to witness the end of the world in “real time” can scan the heavens online this week at Space.com for any signs of death from above. The online Slooh Space Camera on Monday began broadcasting a series of live cosmic views.
The free webcasts will help the public keep watch for any monster solar storms, impending asteroid strikes or other potential agents of the so-called “Mayan apocalypse” that doomsayers claim is set for Friday.
“Rather than merely offer scientists’ dismissals of the many silly doomsday scenarios that have now been heard by almost everyone in the world, and which have reportedly produced panic in Russia, Slooh will take a ‘let’s see for ourselves’ attitude,” said Astronomy Magazine columnist Bob Berman.
It’s a comet! Its an asteroid? It’s a frog!
A frog??? (shout out to Underdog fans).
“By acting independently of any government agency, which assumedly would be disbelieved by the millions who are convinced a giant cover-up is in place, Slooh will observe the planets and the ecliptic plane for anything out of the ordinary,” Berman added.
Good. We need a real watchdog on this one.
Sad, though. The same website featured an advertisement on how men can increase their muscle growth by 700 percent by eating a rare plant. Hey, it could be true. Would have to be a pretty rare plant, though.
Here’s basically what NASA officials have said about the collective doomsday prophesies: The world will not end in 2012. Our planet has been getting along just fine for more than 4 billion years, and credible scientists worldwide know of no threat associated with 2012.
Great. You know what this means, don’t you -- if, in fact, these “scientists” are correct.
We’ll have to continue hanging out here on Earth where our planet travels around the Sun at about 67,000 mph as we rotate at around 900 mph. A dizzying fact. Even sounds a bit apocalyptic.
We’ll continue to age and begin getting those AARP monthly magazines that inform us how to continue to have great sex with lightweight titanium hip implants. The Rolling Stones will finally enter various stages of dementia and release a Christmas album. All the while, Mick Jagger will continue to progressively look more and more like Don Knotts in a pair of panty hose.
In fact, this might be the time to create a new federal holiday: “Improbable Doomsday Day.” We can add it to the 115 days a year on which banks, post offices and local governments shut down leaving the public without any services.
In the end, no pun intended, Frank Roosevelt had it right when he said,” The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”
The Bible says no man will know the time. So lighten up. Sip some 1953 Chateau Mouton-Rothschild. Heck, grab a double whopper and a Pabst. Try bungee jumping. Punch your boss in the solar plexus. It’s your time to shine.
It’s like the story of the wise man who is said to answer one question if you are brave enough to seek him out in his mountain lair. The person, desperate for that one answer that could change his or her life, pursues the wise man for weeks, climbs the edge of a steep cliff, clutches hold and finally lays eyes on the wise man.
“I made it! Tell me, are you the one? Are you the one who can answer the greatest of life’s questions?
“Yes, my son. I hope this answer will benefit you all the days of your life.”