“Did we make it? Are we here?”
That Marty McFly circa Back to the Future Part II-esque quote flashed in my head this morning after I woke up, reached for my phone to check the time, and saw the date DECEMBER 21, 2012 on the screen. Oh shit, I thought, we’re here. I quickly raised the blinds over the window next to my bed and scanned the block for chaos.
I texted a survivalist friend of mine who, like the rest of us, is battling a cold.
ME: Today’s the day… *scary haunted house whistle*
HER: Don’t I know it! Despite my weakened immune system, I’m confident in my ability to run for my life and/or take what I need by force.
True, and I was on high alert when I finally did go out. The air was cold & biting yet oddly benign, as if a gruesome chill had blanketed the city and then dulled and crusted over. All around, people were mute and glassy eyed. The sidewalks were slick with ice and there was snow on the windshields.
Of course, our collective doomed malaise could just be the result of nobody being particularly happy that winter is finally kind of here, and have nothing to do with any apocalypse. And that’s good, because I don’t know about you, but I woke up this morning hoping that we had many more days to live than one.
There are many reasons for that, but one is definitely that a 2012 doomsday means missing out on 2015, my lifelong future year. The children of the 40s grew up with 1984, the children of the 60s with 2001, and the children of the 80s with 2015. It’d be a huge letdown to wait 23 years, have 3 to go, and not get there.
On the other end, my survivalist friend is rooting for her once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to utilize her yearlong food supply or swing an axe into the chest of an intruder. Like me, she’s been imagining that specific glory so long, it’d be a shame to waste it. Because it’s the little things, you know?
About the author: Jack M Silverstein is a Chicago writer who, among other things, wrote the May 2, 2011 3six5 about the killing of Osama bin Ladin. He has written many stories about 12-21-12, most recently on December 1 of this year. Say hey @readjack.