You know what? Being a predictor of doom is probably one of the worst jobs in the world.
Think about it. You really can’t win if you go around predicting when the world is going to end. If you’re right, nobody will know. And if you’re wrong, everybody will just make fun of you.
It’s a sucker’s game, alright. I’m definitely not going to let my kids pursue an Oracle Arts major.
The first time I heard that the world was going to end was back around 1980. I was in middle school and word spread around the lunchroom that Nostradamus has predicted the end of the world for the next day. Now, I’m not sure how some old, dead French dude knew the exact day and date in 20th century New Jersey when the world would end, but since he was right about the Kennedys and Hitler we gave him the benefit of the doubt. In fact, I was so sure that he was right that I didn’t bother finishing a book report that was due on doomsday. Tragically, the world didn’t end as planned and I got busted for not doing my homework. Even more tragically, it wasn’t the first time that I hadn’t completed my homework and my Nostradamus excuse didn’t fly.
The second time I heard that the world was supposed to end was back around 1984. This time the end was supposed to come courtesy of the business end of a Soviet nuclear weapon. This was a more general threat, as we were never promised a specific date for the end of the world. In a weird way this was even more frightening than Nostradamus’s prediction, as we spent months talking about bomb shelters and planning for nuclear winter. But the death paranoia came to an abrupt end on November 1, 1985 thanks to the heroics of one brave Englishman. As soon as Gordon “Sting” Sumner explained to us that the Russians loved their children, too, we all just stopped worrying about nuclear war. As far as I’m concerned Sting can hold back as many orgasms and play as much lute as he wants for the rest of eternity – he’s earned it. That man literally saved us all from worrying about the end of the world.
After 1985 we hit a long, dry spell without any real threats to the world’s survival. Sure, we had acid rain and Milli Vanilli to deal with but things were pretty calm until the Y2K frenzy started.
I was never too worried about Y2K because it seemed like a stupid theory from the get-go. First off, computer technology in the mid-90s was limited to writing term papers and very s-l-o-w-l-y surfing for porn. Secondly, everybody knows that computers don’t kill people – people with computers kill people. And finally, so what if all of the computers thought that it was 1900? What were they going to do – send the Ottoman Empire after us or make us work 18 hour days in unsafe factories?
Nowadays we worry about 2012 and the Mayan prediction about the end of the world. The Mayans were definitely a cool civilization and all but I’m not scared about 2012 at all. Here’s why: the Mayans worshipped the Corn God. What’s the secret ingredient of everything that we eat? CORN. Why would K. Taube (the tonsured corn god) destroy a civilization that worships high fructose corn syrup? The answer is that he wouldn’t. In fact, I think that he’ll be quite happy with us.
I’m going to go out on a limb and predict that the world WILL NOT end in 2012. I’m so confident that I’m right that I’m willing to put some money where my big mouth is. Any takers out there?