We're still gluttons for our doom prophecies

Everybody here? Phew, that was close.

Well, don’t get too comfy. Just because Planet X (aka Nibiru) didn’t collide with Earth Oct. 15 and sweep us over the edge of the vast flatness, it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be rattled.

On its website, Planet X News says the apocalypse has been rescheduled for Nov. 19, when a devastating combination of earthquakes, tornadoes, floods and animated holiday specials will throw what’s left of the Earth into chaos. (Well, more chaos.)

So we have two weeks to get the close to 200 unsound structures in Medford up to code before the ever-promoted “Big One” hits. Although, why wait for the eventual shifting of the Cascadia Subduction Zone when we keep getting told the end is near?

Predicting the end of the world is a tough business. You’re almost always going to be wrong — and the one time you do get it right, who are you going to share those bragging rights with? Nostradamus said it would come in 1999 (it didn’t), but hedged his bets with a second prediction of the year 3797 (we’ll just have to wait and see).

When Planet X News contributor David Meade originally postponed doomsday from Sept. 23 to Oct. 15 — apparently because Nibiruians didn’t have travel visas — he assured us the Earth’s destruction would be something we would talk about for generations.

“Hold on and watch,” he wrote. “I don’t believe you’ll be disappointed.”

“Disappointment” wouldn’t be on my emotional priority list under such circumstances. Frankly, I’ll be in a state of anticipation waiting for the eventual TV miniseries.

Post-Armageddon melodramas should be a snap for an industry that a quarter-century ago gave us three TV movies depicting the ill-fated Joey Buttafucco/Amy Fisher affair. Of course, that titillating story crackled with pop-culture catnip — tabloid headlines, tawdry histrionics and the chance to portray young girls as sexual playthings for older men.

Thankfully, 25 years later Hollywood has evolved from those baser impulses.

Filmmakers have been trying to depict the end times since at least 1916, when … well … “The End of the World” hit the screen. They’ve tried to do us in with asteroids, meteors, natural disasters, man-made disasters, aliens, insects, birds, bees and plants. More often than not, we’ve been saved by Arnold, Bruce, Nicolas, Sylvester or Slim Whitman.

If I were you, I wouldn’t buy stock in these doomsday proclamations. The Rapture Index — which bills itself as “the Dow Jones Industrial Average of end time activity” — might be holding steady in the “fasten your seat belts” zone at 184 … but that’s actually down a point since the previous reading.

And if Planet X News was right about the world ending in November, why did a time-traveler from the Year 2048 land last month on a city street in Casper, Wyoming, to warn residents about an alien invasion set for 2018?

It’s unclear whether the visitor was talking about an invasion from Nibiru, but he was certain that the aliens who had sent him to Wyoming via a transporter pad had first filled his body with alcohol to help him withstand the effects of time travel.

NASA, which convinced us the New Mexico backcountry was the moon, these days tells us the Earth won’t be hit by some rogue planet from which even Bruce Willis can’t save us because … get this … they claim that no such planet exists. The government says that this year’s warnings are simply a repeat of those issued in 2012 — when the end of the world was predicted and left us disappointed by NOT happening.

As the Indigo Girls laid bare, we don’t need to be convinced that we are gluttons for our doom; so it’s no surprise that some among us are eating up this end-times business as though it were a second helping of Y2K.

Which reminds me, does anyone out there need three unopened 18-year-old cases of deviled ham?

— Mail Tribune copy editor Robert Galvin can be reached — for the next two weeks, at least — at rgalvin@mailtribune.com.

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