The Catastrophizer will now, for the very first time, respond to a reader's anxious question for Dear Catastrophizer. This is the very first anxious query Dear Catastrophizer has received and I am pleased it takes as its subject a classic catastrophizing issue: the end of the world. I can only assume that questioners-on-the-cusp will be moved by the manner in which I inflame his anxieties and send in their questions as well, as this is also the only anxious query Dear Catastrophizer has received.

Dear Catastrophizer: I fear we are living in the end times. The Bible, the Mayans, Nostradamus, the Knights Templar, the Illuminati, all point to these being the end of days. Predictions say this will be the last Pope and the last President. It's all gonna blow on December 21st, 2012. What's a boy to do?

Well, a boy should catastrophize. That's the short answer. However, I've always been of the opinion that short answers are the hobgoblins of little minds, so I will elaborate (and do this despite the fact that I suspect the questioner, desperate to capitalize on the negative buzz generated by this site, is a representative from the publicity arm of the studio responsible for that Nicholas-Cageless-Nicholas Cage movie released recently).

If the prognosticators are wrong: It doesn't really matter, because you will ultimately and inevitably face your own personal apocalypse in that you will die. Ultimately and inevitably. As Philip Larkin wrote in his poem "Aubade": "Most things may never happen: this one will." The world may endure forever and forever after all those Illuminati have begun to fertilize sickly and shifty-looking geraniums, but that will make absolutely no difference to you personally because you'll be very dead. Will that catastrophizing be for here or to go, sir? Either way, you'll be needing it.

There is a good chance that the prognosticators will prove to be entirely wrong, because, and listen (because I assume you're reading this to yourself aloud in order to invest it with the proper resonance) carefully, gentle catastrophyte, because this will prove to be an invaluable aid to you in the future: when it comes to the future, nobody knows jack. 

If you want, find a few friends who are also fond of cowled robes, start meeting at mysterious, preferably ruined locations, convince yourself you're controlling the fluctuations of US currency, and issue a decree through some well known, alarmist website indicating that the world is going to end on some random future date. If you're going to try to do this thing right, go to the trouble of ensuring that this date corresponds with the world-ending date posited by another cowled-robe crew. Then simply wait and see how many people, on the eve of your Day, throw their belongings into the sea. I'll bet there will be a few. People like to get themselves worked up every fin-de-siecle or two.

If the prognosticators are right: please see paragraph one of "if the prognosticators are wrong" above.

POLITE DISCLAIMER: This site is intended for entertainment purposes only. If you are not entertained, fair enough.

12/29/2009 04:12:27 am

Nice, but you've dodged one of the boy-catastrophyte's original scenarios: if the apocalypse predicted for December 2012 is correct and he has not, for some reason, succumbed to other, more personal ultimate catastrophes, what's a boy to do? Could you please Go Survivalist?


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