This is it folks.
Doomsday. Judgment Day. The End Times. Going out of Business.
We’ve got about 48 hours before the shit hits the fan.
It will begin with the faithful suddenly shooting up into the sky like fleshy little bottle rockets, whooooosh! called Home in a divine act of rapturous levitation. After the Saved arrive in Heaven, the gates will be locked and no more souls will be admitted. Ever. Then
Zuul Jesus will descend upon the Earth to wage unrestricted Armageddon on the Left Behind in the Final Battle (this is apparently just out of sadistic cussedness since by definition the Left Behind are damned anyway no matter what happens at this point, Heaven being a private party and all) and five or maybe six months later the Big Guy will pull the plug and turn off the lights.
There’s a few questions about the precise order of events and some rather specific logical fallacies, but this charming scenario is believed, more or less, by one hell of a lot of people and none more so than by followers of Christian radio and one Harold Camping – who predicts that The Rapture will begin precisely at 6PM in New Zealand this coming Saturday (the evening of May 21st, which, as I’m sure you all know is the 7000th anniversary of the Great Flood. Which reminds me, does anybody know if Hallmark has a card for that? I’m sorry to hear about the death of every member of the vile human race except for you and the seven members of your immediate family, good luck with the inbreeding).
We know without any shadow of a doubt it is going to happen," said the 94 year old Camping. He’s been broadcasting this message for years on Family Radio, a Christian network owned by Camping and broadcast domestically and internationally to 140 countries and in more than 30 languages. In the last few months, as May 21st draws ever closer, his predictions have reached a fevered pitch. Now, any other old geezer starts spouting pudding fuelled gibberish and the nurses will double up on his meds and hide his TV remote just to screw with him, but you throw in God and suddenly people are nodding their heads. End Times, ooooohhhh, yes, yes tell us more, wise man. Believers have sent Camping millions since he started this song and dance routine – you know, back in the 90’s when he predicted the earth would end in September of 1994 (note that it didn’t, however the Happy Campers remain undeterred). Camping’s supporters have posted more than 2,200 billboards around the US, and a bunch of them are driving across the country in a convoy of RV’s like some kind of Crazy Train of Jesus spreading The Word of the coming apocalypse – which this time is absolutely going to happen. Absolutely. It’s not like Prophet Harold could be wrong twice. A disturbingly large number of these people have abandoned their families, given up their possessions (one chowderhead spent his entire life savings, $140,000, putting up signs in NYC telling people about Camping’s prediction), incurred huge debts that they don’t think they’ll have to pay off, and fully expect to meet Jesus personally this coming weekend.
I’ve encountered a few of these folks.
A couple came to my door a while back. A man and woman, presumably husband and wife, with strange vacant expressions, glazed eyes, and knowing little smiles. Frankly, they looked like victims of a botched lobotomy … or maybe a bad bag of weed. When I opened the door they began burbling enthusiastically about the coming apocalypse and waved a glossy tract with what I can only presume was either a picture of Harold Camping or one of those desiccated beef-jerky like mummies they’ve been finding in the Andes. I stood there in amazement for a minute, the way you would if your shrubs spontaneously burst into flame and started speaking in Charlton Heston’s voice, while they built up steam. I was stunned that any adult capable of standing erect and dressing themselves could buy into such ridiculous hocus pocus. When they hit the part about people suddenly flying naked up into space I sent them packing. I was obnoxious about it, but not nearly as obnoxious as I would have liked (seriously, people suddenly flying up into space? Where is Heaven, exactly? Low Earth orbit? Near the Moon? Do you need to bring a lunch for the trip? How about an oxygen mask?). My wife chewed me out for being rude and she was right, but I just cannot abide these people. I don’t respect their beliefs and I’m not going to pretend that I do.
I’d have no problem if they’d just leave the rest of us alone, but they just can’t seem to do that. And when they thrust their goofy bullshit into my face, into my house, well, I get irritable.
These people have nobody to blame but themselves for what happens next.
I’m looking forward to this.
I really am.
And not for the Sunday morning schadenfreude either – well, OK, not just for the schadenfreude.
See, here’s what we do
- Buy a couple of those blow-up dolls (unless, of course, you already have a couple, as a joke, for bachelor parties and shit. Sure. Nobody is judging you. Loser). Fill them with helium. Saturday evening about 6PM, let them go. From a couple of hundred feet, who will be able to tell vinyl from the Saved? See how many people you can get to jump off the ledge. Fly! Fly! Be free! Or alternatively, fill the inflate-A-date with hydrogen, attach a fuse, let them go, exploding rapture! Oh God, the humanity!
- Saturday night, leave notes on doors, Dear
Saved Damned Soul, we waited for over an hour, where were you? - God
- Nobody post anything on Sunday morning. Stay inside with the lights off – or better yet sneak outside, start your car and leave it running with the sunroof open and the radio tuned to the Gospel Channel. Arrange a couple of suits of empty clothing on the front lawn. Don’t answer your phone. All the believers will think they got left behind. Then, about noon or so, right about the time despair is setting in, we’ll all jump out and yell Surprise!
- Dress up as Jesus. On Sunday morning, knock on Harold Camping’s door and explain why he won’t be joining the others in Heaven. Then kick his ass*.
Of course, my plan presumes that Harold is wrong.
What if he’s right?
What if the Rapture really is this Saturday evening?
Won’t I feel stupid?
Hell no I won’t feel stupid. Because that’s even better. That would be great. Don’t fear the reaper, kids. Here’s ten reasons why Doomsday will be awesome:
1) Hell Finally Freezes Over: I.e. if the world ends now, the Cleveland Indians go out on a winning streak!
2) Free Shit: I call dibs on Kirk Cameron’s house, let’s go see if he left behind any cool Growing Pains memorabilia. Also, you find a car with a Jesus Fish on it, it’s yours – of course you’ll have to peel off the Bush/Cheney stickers, but what the heck, right?
3) Rapture Balloons: Get yourself some stout string. Cut it into six-foot lengths. Make a slip knot on one end. As soon as you see somebody starting to lift off, slip the loop around their ankle and hook the other end to something heavy. Rapture balloon. Collect the whole set.
4) Free Space Program: Lash a bunch of Rapture Balloons together like a raft. Add cargo. What? They’re going right past the International Space Station anyway, it’s not like it’s out of the way.
5) Funniest Home Videos: You’ve got to expect that a bunch of screaming naked people getting sucked up into space is going to be pretty damned hysterical. Word of advice though, try not to stand underneath them – seagulls are bad enough, just saying, and you know, a lot of these people are afraid of heights.
6) Mini Golf: By definition everybody left behind is damned. Heaven is closed. Period. Not much point in keeping all those churches then, is there? That’s a lot of prime real estate. What do we do with it? Mini Golf. Jesus loves the Giant Windmill, just saying.
7) Equality for all: Monday morning we’ll be issuing all the gay marriage licenses you like. No bitching. No bullshit. Be happy and congratulations.
8) Improved Education: We can finally teach biology in school without interruption.
9) Skeet Shooting: Yes, that’s right, skeet shooting. I live on a hill. I’ve got a shotgun and a couple of cases of buckshot. All I need is a lawn-chair and a cooler of beer. The rest of Saturday should pretty much take care of itself. What? It’s not like you can hurt them, they’re saved right? Send up another Rapture Balloon!
10) Fewer Selfish Assholes. Less crowed highways. There’ll be a bunch of job openings. Less trolls on the Science forums. You can sleep in on the weekends without some Evangelical Rapture Monkey banging on your door at 8Am to sell you The Jesus.
Oh, and best of all?
With all the pious godly people all gone up to the Holy Ghost’s house and out of the way, we should have enough extra money and resources to finally feed the hungry, clothe the poor, and heal the sick without having to hear about socialism, communism, Nazis or how lazy people make Jesus cry.
Follow up post: Ten Reasons Why The Rapture Didn’t Happen
* No, I’m not really suggesting anybody go kick a 94 year old man’s ass. However, should Jesus actually show up and decide to bitch-slap this idiot, I’ll hold his robe.
Notice of Compliance: In accordance with the sarcasm provisions of the Patriot Act, International Agreement, and the Ancient Code of The Internet (to whose patron, Saint Don Rickles, all bloggers must pay homage), Stonekettle Station is required by law and custom to publically ridicule, make light of, heckle, mock, and otherwise poke fun at any and all predications of the imminent Return of Jesus, The End Times, Judgment Day, Doomsday, and/or Armageddon due to Rapture, Rupture, or Raptors. Also, zombies.