Thursday, January 17, 2013

The End of the World!

Wife Klem and I enjoy our weekly routine of Friday Night Movie Night. Put the kids to bed, pour a glass of beer or hooch, a bowl of snacks and watch a film. We recently watched Seeking a Friend For the End of the World (2012) starring Steve Carrell. A fun movie about the world coming to an end by means of a huge asteroid on a collision course with earth. Got us thinking, what would we do?

So you have two weeks notice about THE asteroid. It is irrefutably going to crush us. What do we do? For me, it comes down to three stages of action: immediate, preparation, then the waiting.

[Stage 1] Immediate:
Immediately upon hearing the asteroid news, I would go to the bank and max out our ATM cards. Cash, I figure, could be crucial because some merchants may refuse credit cards under these circumstances where humanity would be gone by the time the bill came due. Next stop, the grocery store because I don’t know if this supply line (i.e., food) would be available all the way up until the asteroid collision. Wouldn’t want to come to an unsightly end due to neglect while the asteroid is still en route. And besides, if it can be arranged, you might as well enjoy some degree of comfort in these final days plying oneself with grub. Final major acquisition stop would be Walmart to stock up on a few additional key ingredients. A quick summation:

·       Bank - max out ATM cards
·       Fuel for cars - would be crummy if we had someplace to go, or family to see, but no fuel
·       Grocery store - grub (preferably stuff that can be eaten right out of the can or with little preparation just in case the electricity or gas were not available), water, fruit, meats (hot dogs and lunch meat – these things will last two weeks)
·       Walmart - batteries, walkie-talkies (would want ability to remain in contact with my people), flashlights, solar battery chargers (in case electricity and batteries become unavailable)
·       Propane tank refill (a few final barbecue outtings)

Drop off supplies at home then go back out for a second round amidst the rising chaos. Endure it now while there’s still a chance to acquire necessities . . . or bonus items such as frozen turkeys, pies, and video games.

[Stage 2] Preparation:
Once the immediate action is accomplished to the best of our abilities it’d be time to make a checklist and assess what other preparation is needed to make the final two weeks safe, secure, and enjoyable.

·       Fill a few tubs full of water. You don’t know how long water would be available, so this would be our emergency supply.
·       Water purification kit – get one from Walmart or a Sporting Goods shop?
·       Rechargeable batteries in use throughout the house – charge them full while electricity remains available.

[Stage 3] The Waiting:
What to do with oneself once safety and preparation are accomplished? First, a few things that I would NOT do, possibly ever again. Yard maintenance – mowing or watering of the lawn, raking leaves, honing the sprinkler system to maximum efficiency, and trim bushes. I wouldn’t pay any bills (or at least make only the minimum payment - you know, what if the asteroid misses us, wouldn’t want to have to contend with an overdue penalty), and I wouldn’t go to work. I wouldn’t quit, I’d just put in for two week’s vacation. Again, no need to quit, what if the asteroid misses and I need to return to gainful employment?

The bulk of the final two weeks, once stage I and stage II are secured, would be spent as if it were Thanksgiving. Big meals with family and friends (see turkeys above – turkey reference is to the food, not family members and friends). I’d intend to close this thing out by socially gorging on people I know and love. Phone calls and e-mails to those folks I couldn’t reach, provided these lines of communication remain operable. Reminisce on past joys.

Also, with things coming to an end, no need to save good food, beers, or assorted spirits for special occasions. After all, we’d be in a situation where there would likely be no more occasions at all. This is it! Candy bars, ice cream, hot chocolate, beef jerkey, and ‘sugar’ cereals. It’s time to zero it all out. Empty the cupboards of the good stuff right down the gullet.

Please let me know what I missed. Would be nice to know in advance so that I may update the checklists.