Thursday, December 29, 2011

Like it's 1999

You know I couldn't let this year come to an end without giving at least a passing mention to the Mayan predictions about 2012, right?

As I'm sure you're already aware, the long version of the Mayan calendar is scheduled to end next year, specifically on December 21, 2012.

Over thousands of years, people have come up with several explanations for this abrupt ending, many of them declaring that it must be some prediction about the end of the world.

Doomsday.

Apocalypse.

Armageddon.

Or whatever.

Thing is, though this particular calendar has always had the same end date, the Mayans themselves never predicted the end of the world.  They never said what it meant when the calendar ended.

Most academics speculate that the long version of the calendar will just restart, as the short form of their calendar did hundreds of times.  The conspiracy theorists, though, they are certain of the end of days.  Here's an article debunking most of the possible causes of the end.

I'm a little surprised Harold Camping didn't hold out for that day.  I suppose he figured that he'd have the apocalypse market cornered if he was the lone wolf yapping about 2011.

Oh yeah, by the way, the world didn't end either day he said it would.  But he might be right the next time.  ;)

Y2K was a dud.  It never manifested into the catastrophe that everyone thought it would.

Besides, it's not like people just started predicting the end of the world.  Plenty of people have declared the end was near, only to be proven wrong.

I see it this way.  Chances are that December 21, 2012 will come and go without anything catastrophic happening.  Much press coverage of people freaking out will occur, though.  Religious zealots and paranoid conspiracy theorists will get lots of air time.  Many people will buy into the hype.  I have to wonder how many people will fall for it completely, and quit their jobs, run themselves into the ground financially, while they hop on the apocalypse train.  The world's going to end, so you know I'm not getting that last paycheck anyway, right?

What we all do with our time until then isn't going to have much effect on anything.  There's not much any one human can do to save the world from impending doom.  That is, unless you are Bruce Willis and are willing to sacrifice yourself to blow up the asteroid.

Insert Aerosmith power ballad.

I guess my point is that whether you believe the end of the world is coming or not, there's not a damn thing you can do about it.  And you're going to look like an idiot when the sun rises on December 22, 2012 if you've jacked up your life in the meantime.

I guess we should take Prince's advice and party like it's 1999.

Except the world didn't end then either.

Ah, hell....it's an excuse to drink.  That'll do.

That'll do.

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