Friday, May 20, 2011


Well, folks, it's been a nice world but it's apparently coming to an end. Thus spake nutball preacher Harold Camping (see above), and so we will all be either raptured or left behind to burn in eternal torment tomorrow. I'm looking forward to a restful night's sleep, myself, but just in case, I will be live-blogging the end of the world this evening, assuming that it will come to pass at 12:01 EST. I have a nice dinner with a couple of friends planned, will call my brother, whom I haven't spoken to in ages, and will then settle in to record the destruction of planet earth for posterity. Expect earthquakes, fires, lightning, and floods.

This is probably a good thing for Tim Pawlenty, actually, as he won't have to suffer the indignity of running an unwinnable presidential campaign (see below).

I'm going to see if I can finish this China Mieville book in the meantime. I'll see you fine folks later this evening.

6:10 p.m. Best paragraph I've read all day, from "Iron Council" (book reffed above): "Elsie remembered the air-burials she had heard of among northern tribes. Women and men of the tundra, who let their dead rest in open coffins under balloons, sent them skyward through the cold air and clouds, to drift in airstreams way above the depredations of insects or birds or rot itself, so the stratosphere over their hunt-lands was a catacomb, where explorers by dirigible encountered none but the aimless, frost-mummified dead."

We'll be seeing a lot of frost-mummified dead soon, ha, world ending and such [fill in more jokes at expense of heathens after Great Beast rises from seas]!

6:19 p.m. Will there be beards in the post-rapture world? Only this man knows for sure, and he doesn't look like he's telling. (Thank you to my aforementioned brother, Jacob Thielman, for setting me straight on this.)

11:43 p.m. Lovely dinner with the Thompsons-to-be (friends of ours who are engaged); surprisingly little discussion of the impending eschaton, almost no mention of numerology at all. Sitting on the couch with Pam watching "Viva Ned Flanders" from season 10 of "The Simpsons," which, when the world ends at midnight, is actually not something I would be ashamed to have had as my last few moments on earth.

11:45 p.m. Pausing the episode to read all of the bumper stickers on Comic Book Guy's car. "I Brake for Tribbles" - classic. Heh. Marge is buying a "Loggins & Oates" CD, and Homer is calling Ned Flanders "Churchy LaFemme," which is a joke I'm pretty sure nobody under 50 who isn't an obsessive comic strip nerd gets.

11:49 p.m. How do you suppose the world will end? Meteor? Zombies? Massive spontaneous volcano eruption? Magic? I predict magic.

11:54 p.m. You know what I really don't like? Raisins.

11:55 p.m. Interesting fact about the book of Revelation - "The Apocalypse of St. John" is actually one of a number of documents written about the end of the world during that period in history, but with special significance for Christians because of its intersection with Jewish prophecies.

11:57 p.m. I really have to pee, but I'm not going until the end of the world arrives. Don't want to miss that sort of thing.

11:58 p.m. Actually, isn't it already tomorrow in Australia? Is everyone in Brisbane dead or raptured by now?

11:59 p.m. Raisins really aren't that bad, come to think of it.

12:00 a.m. Aaaaaaaaaahh.

12:02 a.m. For what it's worth, a few news items:

9:58 a.m. Man, it's tired in here this morning. Must be the whole eschaton thing. You know what I want to do for my last day on earth? Watch "Thor." Still haven't seen that thing.

10:18 a.m. So I'm hearing that the world is not ACTUALLY supposed to end until this evening, around 6 p.m., and that it will involve earthquakes, which I think is kind of lame. I want really big fires. Like an asteroid or something. Hey, do we think Harold Camping will give everybody their money back tomorrow?



2:45 p.m. Things I Will Not Regret If the World Ends This Evening

-Happily married
-Finally got job as a professional writer I've wanted since I was six
-Wrote a play, even though nobody ever saw it
-Got to read the summer's two big SF books before world ended
-Still not estranged from siblings or parents despite best efforts
-Saw cheetah cubs in the wild once
-Eventually lost virginity
-Huge, unpaid student loans
-Insurance plan from ages 22-29: "Don't get hit by bus"
-Avoiding physician, dentist.
-Escaping the ravages of age

Things I Will Regret If the World Ends This Evening

-Having a 401(k)
-Never having seen "Thor"
-Still haven't read anything by Proust
-Only got a chapter or two into "The Brothers Karamazov" before picking up "Under the Dome" by Stephen King
-Wife not even pregnant yet
-Novel still in preliminary stages
-Picked up soundtrack to "Me, Myself and Irene" from "Free" pile on neighbor's stoop

Things I Will Regret Whether or Not the World Ends This Evening

-Picked up soundtrack to "Me, Myself and Irene" from "Free" pile on neighbor's stoop
-Watched "Hudson Hawk" like, four times
-Bought "Portal 2" before checking to see whether it would run on my computer
-Years ago, broke wind loudly and blamed it on less popular fellow 11th-grader
-Ate enough ice cream last night to have already regretted it
-Blogged and blogged and blogged, and no one cared

4:21 p.m. It begins!

4:22 p.m. Books that will be the first to go on the fire if I am left behind this evening:

-All three "His Dark Materials" books and addenda by Philip Pullman
-Most of the Stephen King books, except "The Stand"
-Anything by Alan Moore
-The Book of Mormon
-"Preacher" by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon
-Any "Left Behind" novels I can find

4:40 p.m. And if Tim LaHaye calls somebody a P.T. Barnum-level charlatan, you at least know that he's speaking from personal knowledge of the business.

5:40 p.m. Well, the end is night. Apparently I will be going to hell (see here), despite firm belief in a loving God who declines to communicate with the world through fools and charlatans.

5:45 p.m. I've decided to flip on "The Lord of the Rings" and read my Bible for the apocalypse. Oh, look, here's a great verse: "Immediately after the tribulation of those day the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all of the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory."

Whoops, looks like you should have kept reading, Harold Camping!

"But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only."

Wow, so the name of your website is actually blasphemous, then.

You know who never lets you down? Sam Gamgee. That guy is totally great.

5:57 p.m. It's almost time! Soon, every follower of Harold Camping will feel his or her skin start to tingle like he's being beamed aboard the Starship Enterprise, and she will be whisked off to heaven to laugh at the poor SOBs who didn't listen to their loony savior - a man who exhibits several salient features of mental illness and has no formal education but nevertheless must be the only person with access to scriptural secrets that have baffled theologians for millenia!

5:58 p.m. I love Ian Holm in this movie.

5:59 p.m. Wait, who was the Antichrist? Did we ever get a ruling on that?

6:00 p.m. "A wizard is never late, Frodo Baggins. Nor is he early. He arrives precisely when he means to." Poor Harold Camping. The apocalypse has pulled a Gandalf on him.

6:07 p.m. Don't feel too sorry for him, though.

6:11 p.m. Wait, no, I was wrong. The end of the world has arrived.


Natalie Stone said...

Word is 6:00 p.m. is start time, but I've found no clarification on the time zone issue. So maybe it's happening now in Eastern Europe, having worked its way over from Asia?

Kent Gibbons said...

You are definitely headed to the roaster for this mockery, Sam.

Sam Thielman said...

Corrected, Nat. Kent, I'll see you there!

Natalie Stone said...

Never regret Hudson Hawk, Sam. I own it. A movie doesn't have to be good to be great ;)