Ask any passing Mayan for an opinion on the imminent apocalypse and you will probably be on the receiving end of a very blank look. There is no evidence anywhere in Mayan culture that predicts Armageddon on December 21st 2012 but, unsurprisingly, a little bit of nonsense is always good for business.
The Yucatán peninsular in Mexico, the geographic centre of the ancient Mayan civilisation, is currently enjoying a boom in tourism due to thrill seekers wishing to enjoy the end of the world at close quarters. Add into the mix the supposition that a bloody big asteroid impacted there 65 and half million years ago causing the extinction of dinosaurs in a maelstrom of glass particles and hot iridium and you have the perfect spot for the holiday of a lifetime. Even the sublime Douglas Adams could not have foreseen that the restaurant at the end of the universe was located somewhere within the Chicxulub crater. The fruit cakes predicting dark meteor impacts, supervolcanoes, megacaldera, floods, foxes transmitting cancers to dogs and then dogs transmitting cancers to humans and a mysterious unobserved planet heading this way seem happy to don a blindfold and wave a stick at a philosophical piñata suspended tantalisingly above their heads. Okay, there has been some flooding in Hampshire and in other places and for some reason it has proved to be impossible to publish images on this humble blog but that is no justification to say “Oooh, that is so spooky”.
The Maya long count calendar comes to the end of its 13th and final baktun in a few hours time. It could well be that ancient Mayan soothsayers ran out of room on the calendar that looks remarkably like an Oreo biscuit or that there was no point in speculating a future involving conquistadors but many surviving people of Mayan heritage regard the end of the 13th baktun as a new beginning rather than the final countdown. Your humble correspondent once owned a delightful Mini Cooper possessed with very high mileage. Regardless of rusting to the sub-frames, this lovely little car conveyed its owner to the Hover port at Ramsgate, down through France, over the Pyrenees and across the coast of northern Spain. A few weeks in the Mini was 150 miles away from going round the 100,000 miles clock and a road trip to Portugal ensued. This blog would like to offer a sincere apology to the truck driver just outside Braga who had to stand on his brakes as we slowed down to walking pace to watch the odometer return to zero. We celebrated the potential of the next 100,000 miles and after nearly a year of negotiating the roads and tracks of Galicia, the Mini was able to haul itself back over the Pyrenees and back to England. Sadly, the Mini eventually died; the victim of a harsh northern winter.
If the Mini Cooper had any sense at all, it would have broken down near the Pyrenean village of Bugarach just inside France. Apparently, this tiny place is in the shadow of a mountain that contains extra terrestrials equipped with spaceships to save any humanity in the district caught up by the destruction of the planet. Astonishingly, the local police have had to seal off the village to stop fruit cakes arriving and the mayor has issued a statement appealing for loonies to stay away. For some strange reason, Bolivia has decided to ban Coca-Cola not for sensible health reasons but because the tooth rotting drink is somehow linked with the end of time. In Russia, China and Argentina, the authorities fear that people are planning mass suicides and a weapons manufacturer in North Carolina has developed a hybrid assault rifle he is calling the doomsday weapon. A cross between an AR-15 and an AK-47, the firearm will give an obvious advantage on an unpopulated planet. In Illinois, a couple have sold all their possessions in preparation for the rapture and have kept their children tied-up and blindfolded in a car on a Wal-Mart parking lot. It is not certain if a piñata was present in the vehicle.
What these crazies fail to grasp is that they have been out-crazied for centuries. Right… a woman will give birth without ever having sexual intercourse. She, and others, will have the truth revealed to them via the medium of dreams. Religious leaders will wear frocks and have sex with little boys. Politicians will lie and cheat. Untalented morons will achieve fame and wealth and the plastic hippo will find it impossible to display photographs on his ridiculous blog. People called Nigel will telephone you from Mumbai to ask about loft insulation. The trains will not work.
It`s not like it`s the end of the world or anything. Get over it.