It’s time to say goodbye again, since the sun will have turned us all into smouldering piles of ash in 5 days from now.
I don’t want you to think that I’m not taking it seriously, I mean Armageddon is a very serious thing (even if it does have Owen Wilson in it), but by the time you reach your late 30s you have survived the end of the world so many times that unless all four horsemen dismount their frightful steeds and take turns kicking you in your happy place, it’s rather difficult to get nervous about yet another apocalypse. The briefest of scans through a handful of different websites tells me that, even by conservative estimates, the world has ended 47 times since I was born. An insecure man of a more spiritual persuasion than myself, might be inclined to take that personally, but I prefer to worry about more important things, like… why my favourite brand of hotdog disappeared from the shelves of my local ASDA… or what the hell is in Swedish DNA that could possibly account for the overwhelming popularity of Salt Liquorice in this country??
Anyway… returning to the end of the world (not a gigantic leap from Salt Liquorice, in my honest opinion): Harold Camping alone has predicted the end of life as we know it on no fewer than six occasions since 1994. Frankly, if this man told me it was raining outside I would not feel it necessary to wear a coat, but even he now seems to have given up doom-saying, and I hope you’ll join me in wishing him the very best of luck in all his future endeavours. Personally, I always try to err on the side of caution where Judgement Day is concerned. Having seen so many apocalypses pass without incident, you’re never likely to find me holed-up in a cellar, with a crossbow made from a crucifix, a hair elastic and a knitting needle; waiting to skewer the first looter whose desperation and blood-lust drives him to interrupt my bath-time… but it never hurts to get an extra loaf of bread in, or perhaps a carton of long-life milk. If it turns out to be one of those zombie apocalypses, beloved of so many movies and video games in recent years, my good friend, Kitty, has some words of wisdom concerning survival, which you might do well to commit to memory lest civilization should collapse around us at the end of the week.
As you’ve probably gathered by this point, I don’t put a great deal of stock in predictions of Doomsday. Had I believed prophecies of this kind in the past, I might have spent the Y2K period in a five-star hotel room, ordering prostitutes and room-service on my bank manager’s credit-card. Instead, I spent the first few minutes of the new millennium watching 2 dozen naked men in Elvis wigs walk into the freezing waters of the English Channel, at Bournemouth sea-front… The end of the world holds very little terror once you’ve seen that. However, if a Coronal Mass Ejection destroys the Earth’s magnetic field and melts off my face on Friday afternoon, feel free to stand around laughing at my short-sightedness. I will certainly be royally embarrassed by the whole episode.
If any of you are remotely interested in my whereabouts as you read this, I will be attending an exhibition in Stockholm; showcasing the photography of a couple of very talented young Swedes, from their round-the-world trip in 2010-2011. In the highly likely event that you are unable to attend, since I gave you no address, it will involve crossing the Baltic sea for many of you, and I only gave you about 2 hours notice… their work can be found on the following websites, here, here, and here.
For the rest of you, if the short-sightedness of Mayan calendar makers has compelled you to stay at home in the run up to Christmas, you might want to spend just a few of your remaining hours glancing at Amazon.com, just in case your nephew is still very much alive, and demanding to know where his copy of FIFA 13 is, come the morning of the 25th. And, since my customary farewell might seem somewhat trivial counsel in the darkness of the approaching storm, I will forego references to soap, and simply say: Remain Indoors! Try to keep warm, and if the pale glow of a computer screen offers some comfort in the days ahead, try to make sure that my blog is the last thing you are looking at before the fury of our mighty star burns it permanently into your retinas.
Take care. 🙂