So, I know that all the jokes about the apocalypse not coming after all are pretty old by this point. I mean, the supposed event was to have taken place on Saturday, so everyone has taken their shots, had their chuckles, and continued on with their lives.
But I still want to talk about it, so I hope you're cool with that.
On Saturday, while waiting for the Rapture, I was out weeding my garden. If that's not an apt living metaphor, I don't know what is. I couldn't help thinking as I tore knee-high weeds from the muddy ground, that I was creating my own little doomsday right there in the backyard. I was literally destroying a habitat -- in the name of creating something greater -- but causing destruction and devastation nonetheless. I watched the spiders skitter away and the worms writhe in their newly-upturned soil and I thought, I wonder if the bugs had their own little warning prophets of doom?
Side note: does anyone else feel morally qualmed while gardening? I know it's silly, but I do. I look at the weeds and I think, "How come this plant has to die? Because it's ugly? Because it has no use to me? Because I want it to?" I think that a lot about dandelions. Though the other thought I have about dandelions is "Just die already! Die, die, die."
But anyway, back to the Rapture. While I was destroying wicked weeds in my backyard, preparing fertile ground for useful vegetables, I thought a lot about Harold Camping. See, I was pretty sure that the Rapture wasn't going to happen May 21 at 6pm (Hey, I was right!). Something about "no man knoweth the day or the hour" seemed to be a strong indicator for me that either the guy was misleading or just misled. But still, I thought, maybe we shouldn't be so smug in our dismissal of the guy and his small-but-enthusiastic, van-driving following. Reports of rapture countdown clocks and flippant facebook comments got me thinking that maybe we're all missing an opportunity here.
Whatever you may believe - whether in an afterlife, a God, a resurrection, a blank and peaceful nothingness, whatever - the truth of the matter is that we all only get the one life. So when an opportunity comes along to evaluate it and ask yourself if you like who you're becoming, maybe it shouldn't be dismissed out of hand. I thought a lot about that as I caked myself in mud in the backyard. I wondered, if the Second Coming were to happen that evening, or next week, or next year - would I be ready? At the end of any day, can I look back over it and feel that I am happy with what I did, how I behaved, how I treated others, how I spent my time?
So many days I feel just get wasted, mostly on this lovely computer, and I wonder what opportunities I am missing. What I will regret when it's all over. But I don't really think about it all that often: I just go with the flow and live out my habits and patterns.
And so I think a little wake up call every now and then is not a bad thing. A little Harold Camping-style pseudo-Rapture -- as misguided and eye-roll-inducing as it may be -- might just be an excellent opportunity to ask ourselves, "Am I living it right?"
Still, funniest thing I heard after the "Rapture" - a text conversation between my sister (AJ) and my dad.
AJ: Did u guys get raptured??!?
Dad: What do you think? Of course we were taken up. Enjoy your last 5 months of torment. We'll be eating gelato here in heaven.
AJ: Well, thank God (when u see him) that there's 3G service up there!
Ah, texting from heaven. Technology sure has come a long way.