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Thursday, September 9, 2010

Bring on the Apocalypse

I recently became obsessed with the apocalypse.  It's been something I've been interested in at other times in life.  I have always loved end of the world (especially Kevin Costner post apocalyptic flicks) and zombie movies (I'm very anxiously awaiting Resident Evil 4), but recently with the economy in the dumps, questionable wars raging on, and my own life situation (soon to be unemployed again), the obsession of movies has turned into an obsession of awaiting.  I've started to dive into all the books I should have, but never read before, 1984, Blindness, Brave New World, The Postman, World War Z, to name a few currently sitting on my "to read" shelf.  I am catching up on all the post apocalyptic movies I somehow missed.  The difference now is I watch, read and study these circumstances to mentally prepare myself.  Of course people think I'm crazy.  A "doomsdayer," a "gloom and doomer" so I've been called.  Is this what modern technology and society has done to us?  Killed the basic instinct for survival.  Is fight or flight instinct now sit and die?  During the Great Depression 90% of Americans were self sufficient.  I don't even think 9% of Americans could become self sufficient in a time of crisis today.  I'm sorry, but if Paris Hilton had to fend for herself to get food, shelter and water my money is that she would sit on the side of the road and give up along with a lot of other people.  So, am I really that far off the scale of normality to prepare myself for such incidences?  Yes, a zombie or vampire virus released to the public to spread world wide is unlikely, but what can we learn from these movies?  The modern day warrior plays video games and watches movies to prepare for war, is it so weird to read 1984 and take into account that we have the technology and in most cases have already been set up for a Big Brother take over?  There are now video cameras at most traffic intersections and as we transfer over to e-books are we creating the power to erase and alter history?

Sure I might be taking things to the extreme when I daydream about building a bomb shelter in the middle of the desert, but if there was an earthquake in California that disrupted the flow of food to our local grocery store is it a bad idea to have a week or more rations of food in the garage?  With Russia burning down and 1/3 of the world's wheat crop destroyed, is it wrong to prepare for food shortages mentally and physically?

Yes, it's a bit ridiculous to take notes while watching movies about alien invasions, but do you really think it's out of the realm of possibilities?  We live in a society that lives preparing for a hypothetical future on paper.  We plan our retirements in Florida and how to make money off fake economic systems all the while paying for insurance on our cars, houses, property - life itself.  Now, do I really sound that ridiculous preparing for an earthquake or nuclear war by storing food in the garage (which, unfortunately, I haven't had the time or money to do) opposed to investing money in a fiat money system with nothing but bank statements to back it up?  Maybe the apocalypse isn't going to be one huge event of massive death and destruction with a few survivors left to struggle and find one another and create a new world from the ashes.  What if the apocalypse is a slow take over of our mind and will to survive against all odds without our laptops, IRAs, automatic driving cars, wireless internet and Facebook.  What if we are in the apocalypse now?  What if this was the beginning and in another ten years we will find ourselves roaming the roads of what was once called America trying to find food so we won't have to eat one another.  Of course on the flip side what if the economy picks up and in another ten years we have regular shuttles for vacations on the moon?

Maybe I'm just daydreaming about the end because then interviews, careers, retirement, loan payment plans, housing markets and all of the other things that bogs down our life in adulthood wouldn't matter anymore.  Maybe it is a bit fucked up that instead of looking and applying for work I'm sitting here daydreaming about the end of the world.  If the world does end tomorrow then none of this bull shit that gets in the way of, but is essentially what makes up life, would also cease to exist.  Then again, "On a long enough time line the survival rate of everything drops to zero." (Chuck P.).  Maybe we shouldn't sit around and wait for Superman or a global leader to come rescue us and start preparing ourselves.  If the apocalypse was tomorrow how long would you survive?  2012 is right around the corner after all.

Well, in case the world doesn't end I should probably work on life plans again.


  1. LOL - well at least I know we have something to talk about next week when you come to O-town.

    You would love - they have a forum dedicated to apocalypse survival and a small but growing group of folks who have bought land in Canada and other "non-impacted" sites. Some are already collecting supplies just in case "Deep Impact" comes true.

    My opinion is that it won't happen. I really like the movie in "The Day the Earth Stood Still" where they say something akin to "When life reaches a precipice, humanity can change. It takes the precipice, but we can change. The most immediate (if any) threat that we face is an asteroid called Apophis that is coming VERY close in 2028 or 2029. This is a real deal monster asteroid that will come inside the moon's orbit and is the closest apocalyptic event we are likely to see in our life time.

    Still, if it helps I will bring you a chem-lite next week to add to your lead-lined cave ;)

  2. Haha, thanks Lucas. I'm hoping it doesn't come true, but I think the obsession in watching/reading apocalyptic themed books and movies is questioning my actions/reactions and whether or not I'd survive and how long I'd survive. It's really not that different from people who watch war movies/video games all the time. I think it's the same allure - what would I do in that situation. It's more entertainment value than actually worrying about the what if's. I've not built the bunker yet :) can't wait to see you and I remember you telling me about that site before - will definitely check it out this week. Time to board!!! -Lib