Sunday, December 23, 2012

Turn The Page

If you are reading this, the most recent slated apocalypse has passed. The Mayans apparently ran out of stone, or perhaps they were simply marking the end of one particular event or phase. The world will continue on its mostly circular path around the sun, but if you ask a Mayan, they will tell you that we are simply waking up to a new world, and a new calendar. Kind of like a great big, pre-Colombian New Year's Eve. Only this one won't have Dick Clark in it.
My wife, in one of her infrequent, less-than-optimistic moments, suggested that the world has been ending for some time now. We're just starting to notice it. The Middle East. The elementary school shootings. Cassadee Pope wins on "The Voice." The signs are everywhere. It's not just my wife who has this doomy outlook. If you Google the phrase "end of the world," you can get almost seven hundred million results. It's on a lot of people's minds.
Maybe that's because, way down deep inside, we all secretly crave that experience. Not in a scary, suicidal way. More along the lines of a secret reset button sort of way. Being able to take the cares and woes of this world and wipe the slate clean has some appeal. That explains the prevalence of survival sites on the interwebs. Sure, for most of you suckers, the world will end, but I've got dried food and gas masks. And plenty of ammo to protect it.
I suppose that's the appeal of the Rapture, where all the good, God-fearing folk will be lifted up out of the fear and destruction, leaving the rest of us to fight over the scraps and shreds of this former civilization. It has echoes for me in the rush I see in kids shoving to be at the front of the line. No matter how many times I remind them that they will all be going to the same place, and there are plenty of seats for everyone, there are always three or four who seem to be desperate to muscle their way to that first spot. Interestingly, there are also a group of two or three who hang at the back. These are generally more quiet about their positioning, but they seem just as intent on being at the very end of the line. These are the ones who want to see what happens when the the door closes. They want recess to last just a little longer.
I don't know how much this world compares to recess, but I think I'll be with the group hanging at the end.

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