Opinion

It's the end of the world and I feel fine | Skager

The end of the world has come.

Again.

On Friday, for the umpteenth time in recorded human history, our world comes to an end.

This prediction comes courtesy the long form Mayan calendar, which resets today, naming Dec. 21, 2012 as Earth's final day.

Although nobody seems to agree exactly on what form the end will take, you can bet your sweet bippy it will be cataclysmic and worthy of a high-budget Hollywood feature film (and it comes during the Christmas film season as well.)

Some have proposed the possibility of a cosmic collision with a previously undiscovered planet (called either X or Nibiru). Originally this was supposed to have happened in 2003, but when the mystery planet failed to smash into Earth, the catastrophe was rescheduled.

Others claim a solar maximum – a period of great solar activity featuring increased sunspots and solar flares – will trigger a reversal of our planet's magnetic poles. Some theorize that previous reversals resulted in mass extinction events such as the disappearance of the dinosaur and the vanishing of fins on automobiles. Most likely the only tragedy that could come from a pole reversal would be one confused Santa Claus and scores of befuddled penguins.

Another theory is that the Sun will align with a supermassive (now there's a fun word) black hole called Sagittarius A* located in the center of our galaxy. This will obviously end badly for us, with the Earth sucked into the gravity well of Sag A* like a dust mote into a Hoover.

From there the scenarios just get crazier, with scores of weather related disasters befalling us (hurricanes, tidal waves, floods, serious persistent drizzle) and geological fiascos such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes (learn to swim Southern California).

I suspect that much like the countless other end of the world dates, Dec. 21, 2012 will pass with a whimper and nary a disaster.

However, in the unlikely event that the Earth is visited by any of the aforementioned dire events and does end Friday, I'd like to list a few of things I'm most thankful for about living in this lovely little section of Planet Earth known as the Puget Sound.

I'm thankful for my family and the numerous friends I've made.

I'm glad to have gotten the chance to work with my coworkers and the fine members of the community we report on.

I'm thankful for getting paid to watch athletic events and for being able to illustrate and feature the many fine student athletes who embody the spirit of fair play.

I'm grateful for being able to take concert photos at two of the regions finest venues, the ShoWare Center in Kent and Auburn's White River Amphitheatre.

And mostly, I'm thankful for our many fine readers, who make it possible for me to write for a living and indulge me in my occasional flights of fancy such as this column.

And if the world does end today, I'm thankful for the time I've had.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Reach the Reporter's Shawn Skager at 253-833-0218, ext.5054, or sskager@auburn-reporter.com

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