World’s ending? Trucks all ‘round

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 28, 2012

It was a Facebook comment by my son-in-law that inspired this column. (The muse seems to speak through Facebook often these days).

Anyway, the comment was about the impending “end of the world” on December 21.

“So since the Mayans predict the world ends next month, I guess I can buy a new truck,” my son-in-law wrote, “and a boat and a dump truck.”

My first thought and my response to him was that if he rushed out and bought a truck, boat and dump truck, my daughter might see to it that the end of his world arrived early. I’m pretty sure he knows this and none of those things is going to appear at his house.

Although he made the comment as a joke, it set me thinking about the craziness swirling around the end of the Mayan calendar in 2012. There is speculation that it predicts everything from the earth shifting on its axis, to the return of a Mayan god who is an alien, to an alignment of the sun and the earth with a black hole, and the appearance of “Planet X.” All of those things spell disaster.

Some say it will bring a shift to higher consciousness and a change for the better for humanity. I hope, if anything is going to happen, that their predictions are correct.

You can find more stuff on the internet about this than you can read or watch between now and the end of time. There are folks ready to help you prepare for what’s coming so you can survive the horror of it. Personally, if I’m going to have to forge for food and fight other humans for water, all the while with no air conditioning, heating or indoor plumbing, I’ll just go on to glory instead of surviving the apocalypse.

Scientists and other experts point to the flaws in the theories about what will happen come December 21. There are even Mayan elders, descendants of the ones who created the calendar, who say “don’t worry, life will go on come Dec. 22.”

I decided I’m not going to lose any sleep or max out any credit cards in anticipation of what may happen. Still, all of the talk about this got me thinking about what I would do if I believed my life were about to end.

My first thought was that there is not one thing I’d feel a need to go out and buy, not one boat or dump truck on my wish-I-had-it-before-I-die list. Of course, there are always things I might like to have, but if I knew my extinction was nigh, there isn’t one material thing I’ve missed owning that would make my life more complete.

There is not anywhere I feel I must see before I pass. Sure, there are places I might like to visit someday, but nowhere I’d rush off to see if I had less than a month of breathing time left.

What I would want to do if my time was short is tell all the people in my life how much I care about them. I’d want to do my best to heal any old hurts and to let go of all negative feelings toward anyone.

In the midst of considering what I’d do with my last days if I knew they were my last days, it hit me.

“Why do I need to have a deadline looming to do those things?”

That I guess is the lesson my son-in-law taught me with his post. We should, like the song says, live like we are dying so that no matter when the end comes, and it will come to all of us, there will be nothing left undone.

That doesn’t mean, however, that a certain someone I love dearly should start shopping for a dump truck. And, if he does, he might not want to post it on Facebook.