…And I Feel Fine
To paraphrase REM: It was supposedly the end of the world as we knew it, but I feel fine. In fact, things couldn’t be more mind-numbingly normal. This makes me wonder: should we be more excited that the world didn’t come to a spectacular end?
I’m sure there were some end of the world parties out there and maybe people came up with some crazy ideas for what they would do if the Grim Reaper was suddenly staring them down, but I can’t figure out why only the end should be celebrated. Shouldn’t we rejoice in the fact that it all didn’t come to a sudden stop? I think any end of the world plans should be amplified in recognition of the continuation of it all.
If you wanted to go streaking down Comm Ave, from Kenmore Square to the Public Gardens, then do it anyway! In fact, do laps and bring some friends. To only revel in the end of life means you’re not living life to its fullest. Go nuts!
There’s also the possibility that perhaps we’re all still here due to some divine intervention. We very well could’ve been strapped to the big old cosmic electric chair, then at the very last second the Governor called in with a pardon. Or at the very least a temporary injunction. We could’ve witnessed a miracle, but sometimes the miracles are so obvious that they go completely undetected. To quote Pulp Fiction, otherwise known as the greatest movie of all time:
“Hey, Vincent, don’t you see? That shit don’t matter. You’re judging this shit the wrong way. I mean, it could be that God stopped the bullets, or He changed Coke to Pepsi, He found my fucking car keys. You don’t judge shit like this based on merit. Now, whether or not what we experienced was an “according to Hoyle” miracle is insignificant. What is significant is that I felt the touch of God. God got involved.”
Discussions on miracles don’t include nearly enough profanity these days, do they? It’s not to say that I felt the touch of God that day, no. There have been seemingly way too many ‘end of the world’ countdowns in the last couple of years. So many, in fact, that my senses have been dulled to it all. It’s weird how a message of doom from someone else just comes across as funny and crazy. I can recall watching nutcases drive around trucks plastered with messages about the pending apocalypse one summer. To see the looks on their faces when they discovered that their Kool-Aid was nothing more than crazy juice would’ve been priceless.
Besides, do the Mayans have any sort of credibility when it comes to predictions? They very well could but I’m too lazy to look into it. I tend to lean towards them being lazy. Maybe lazy isn’t the right term, but they stopped for reasons other than the world ending. Why would they need a calendar going out that far? Think about it: there was going to be a point where one of them said ‘Hey I think we’ve gone far enough with this. Let’s get back to our pyramid-type things and preparing for conquistador attacks’. I wonder if the conquistadors saw the calendar and started freaking out, making that whole mess just a big misunderstanding. If only they knew that it didn’t mean the world was ending! Talk about panicking for nothing.
There’s also the alternate reality angle to consider. Maybe it all did end and we just don’t know it. Sort of like the ending to [spoiler alert!] Lost. In other words, largely disappointing, confusing and unsatisfying. The afterlife we all created for ourselves is…exactly like the old life. I always knew there’d be Twitter in Heaven…or is it hell?
In the interest of covering my own butt here, I should say that these amplified festivities should only be carried on if they’re not at the expense of the safety of the general public. If one of your dreams was to finally drive on the left side of the road but you can’t afford to travel to England, please don’t try it on the Zakim Bridge. Traffic is bad enough around here as it is.
Here’s to living without constant reminders of our mortality, until the next apocalyptic countdown begins.