Some help­ful hints for the end of the world

The Globe - - OPINION -

I s the end of the world at hand?

“Yes!” ac­cord­ing to some — and it’s coming sooner th an later. Specifi - cally, warn th­ese prog­nos­ti­ca­tors, it’s game over in less than two weeks, and as proof point to the end of the Mayan cal­en­dar on 1221- 12 and to the Chi­nese Book of Change.

Hog­wash, I say, among other choice words.

Sure, my foun­da­tion re­cently was rat­tled when the Phillies- Ea­gles- Fly­ers sea­sons fell like domi­noes; Sandy ef­fort­lessly re­moved sid­ing from my house and Elmo was un­masked. And, OK, there’ve been those other at­tempts to solve the time puz­zle, wit­ness Bi­ble pre­dic­tions of the rap­ture and an­tichrist, and the writ­ings of Nostradamus.

But, c’mon, I’m not fall­ing for th­ese apoc­a­lyp­tic fore­casts. Not even fol­low­ing the lat­est dooms­day dec­la­ra­tion.

“The rnited States and other world gov­ern­ments are well aware of what is coming. They know they won’t be able to pro­tect and as­sist ev­ery­one, so they have devel­oped self- help ma­te­ri­als and web­sites such as Ready. gov and FEMA. gov. Th­ese sites pro­vide valu­able in­for­ma­tion for short- term sur­vival of iso­lated in­ci­dents such as earth­quakes, tor­na­does and hur­ri­canes, but do not ad­dress the real dan­gers that await us,” says www. De­cem­ber212012. com, which de­scribes it­self as the of­fi­cial site for the fi­nal day.

I’m think­ing the “dan­ger that awaits us” is grounded in un­founded and ir­re­spon­si­ble dec­la­ra­tions like that one.

The site, how­ever, de­fends it­self.

“The pur­pose of this web­site is to as­sist and pro­vide you with the nec­es­sary re­sources and in­for­ma­tion to help you pre­pare for and sur­vive a long- term global dis­as­ter.” Balder­dash! But just for fun, let’s say the para­noid doomsayers are right. How best to pre­pare? A few sug­ges­tions: Stock up. Ob­tain non- per­ish­able food, as well as water, bat­ter­ies and other justc a n ’ t - a n d - won’t - l i v e - with­out- it items. Freezedried food might be a good bet and a- one- year sup­ply ( no sides or spe­cialsF runs $ 1,995.95 for more than 270,000 to­tal calo­ries. Ship­ping is free from De­cem­ber212012. com. Light up. I know what you’re t hink­ing ( and shame on youF, but I’m t alki ng about power. Sandy r ecently r evealed how l ost we are with­out TV, com­puter, cell phone and game sys­tem, to say noth­ing about heat, r efrig­er­a­tion and l i ght. ( For many, if f elt l i ke t he end of t he world when Sandy un­plugged usF. In case t he f i nal day does t he same, you’ll need an al­ter­nate source of en­ergy l i ke t hose gas- pow­ered gen­er­a­tors many hasti l y pur­chased f ol­low­ing t he su­per storm. Turns out t hat pur­chase was a good one af­ter all.

Party like there’s no to­mor­row – be­cause there might not be one.

Since the pre­cise time of day the world ends on the 21st is un­clear, I sug­gest a day- long af­fair - prefer­ably in a place off the ground should flood­ing be in­volved with screens se­cure enough should swarm­ing in­sects be the tac­tic. Have am­ple food and junk be­cause this is no time to diet, and mu­sic like R. E. M.’s “It’s the End of the World as We Know It” and Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire.” And, of course, in­vite close friends and fam­ily.

“In those fi­nal mo­ments, you may want to make up for any wrongs you have done to them. Also, you will likely be giv­ing hugs and cry­ing along­side all those present at your 2012 end- ofthe- world bash, so you’ll want to make sure that those are the peo­ple you are com­fort­able be­ing your­self around,” sug­gests Erik Wes­ley of Ya­hoo! Con­tribut­ing Net­work.

Should the apoc­a­lyp­tic alarm be real, then nice know­ing you. Oth­er­wise, see you next time.

Greg reached Vell­ner can be at gvell­ner@veri-

WIN­NER ... Elizabeth Sweeney of Glen­side took first place in the fe­male di­vi­sion in the first “Freezer 5K & 1-Mile Fun Walk” Dec. 16, which took place along Hor­sham Town­ship’s Power-line Trail. Al­most 400 run­ners took part in the event.

Greg Vell­ner

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