A Garden of Your Lesser Follow-Up Apocalypses

The Mayan apocalypse didn't kill us all, but I knew the apocalypse couldn't kill me. I've been through major earthquakes and hurricanes, Y2K, Hale-Bopp and MMMBop. In my lifetime, they've been printing doomsday prophecy the way vaporware tech companies printed stock in 1999. I wipe my ass with prophecy.

I've blown off predictions from Edgar Cayce and Nostradamus. WICKED FORTUNA's wheel swings round and round, and I keep truckin'. Shoot, I've been to one World's Fair, a picnic and a rodeo, and some Mayan calendric reckoning is about the stupidest thing I ever heard come over a set that plays Luke Russert.

Still, I reckon you wouldn't be human beings if you didn't have some pretty strong emotions about the end of the world, and that's where I've got some good news for you. Because, while you might have missed this one, over the next 20 years, you will suffer an unrelenting series of universe-annihilating catastrophes. Behold:

December 22, 2012 — You roam the streets, looking for any Mayans or Mayan-owned businesses you can bust up now that their prophecy has failed and you have to return to work on Monday. A vengeful Kukulkan turns you into a used Jaguar dealer with feathered hair and shoes made from a serpent.

Dec 25, 2012 — Dad doesn't get you the new iPhone.

January 1, 2013, 4:15 a.m. — You enter Hour #2 of a Denny's conversation about Fugazi.

Late at Night Drinking Old Milwaukee Tallboys You Bought at a Mobil (Eternal) — You upload your photo to HotOrNot. The site crashes and is replaced by Boris from Goldeneye calling you "Slughead," "Boatass," and "Shit, looks like a med school's missin' it's 'oopsie' cadaver. And what's that they put on you? Goddamn, somebody used a hot steamroller to iron-on a book of swatches from Ross."

January, 2013 — You enroll in an online class to learn how to photoshop explosions over pictures of ancient temples so you can get in on the next apocalypse. Within 18 months, your sole artistic output is creating armored versions of Rainbow Dash for airbrushing on the sides of Honda Elements.

July, 2013 — Mitt Romney is found dead in your Audi.

March, 2014 — "You're from LA? I went to USC film school! My thesis project was Ben Stiller," he says by way of introduction, as you try to distract each other from panicking in a stopped elevator.

June, 2015 — You finish illegally burning all your illegally burned DVDs over to the new industry-leading format, and they release another format. You now own The X-Files on five different types of media, but they still won't release a boxed set of the non-mythology episodes.

December, 2015 — You fall in love at the office party, and she's the only woman you'll love ever again. You work up the courage to Facebook request her about two weeks later, and my GOD, we're a species that used to fight BEARS, and this is what we're reduced to. You pretend to be a bear on Facebook and eat honey in the breakroom with your hand. You're eventually shot, but it has no connection with the bear stuff.

August, 2016 — It's too hot out. It's always too hot out in August, but still. It's too hot out.

February, 2017 — Reddit subforum "Rape or Not???" is acquired by Facebook for S1.1 billion in cash and stocks, ahead of a record-setting initial public offering underwritten by Goldman Sachs and Corcoran State Prison, LLC. "Like" is replaced on all Facebook posts with "raep," since the Supreme Court's landmark Misandry v. Care ruling in 2016 determines that it's ironic when it's spelled that way.

First Two Years of Community College — Amanda puts you in the friend zone.

May, 2018 — Mitt Romney is found dead in your infinity pool.

September 11, 2018 — The Comedy Central Roast of Sheikh Ayman al-Zawahiri sparks controversy when Lisa Lampanelli is unfunny for the first time. Norm MacDonald rescues her set when he says, "I'll tell ya what happened to the first tower! It's an erectile dysfunction metaphor!" The newspaper he pretends to flip through is nominated for a Cable Ace Award and Pulitzer, but only that physical copy.

October, 2019 — They invent a bra that provides 24-hour gravity-defying support with total ease and comfort, but it's made from cats.

April, 2020 — A shiver of great white sharks make their way into Lake Superior and not only become the Midwest's dominant arena football team owing to a lack of rulebook specificity, but they are awarded emergency management powers over Detroit by Governor Tom Sizemore.

September, 2020 - From now on, you spill cold water on your socks or bare feet whenever you put a dish in the dishwasher. No matter what.

The Miracle of Parenthood — Your kids don't like your music, and when you talk to them about stuff, they don't get any of the references. Years later you discover a vlog of your child doing an impression of you trying to be Billy Joel, even though you don't like him. You find out later that your parents already knew about it, but they didn't tell you.

Your Parents — Wow, you can't believe you're really as old as you are. At this age, your parents were WAY ahead of you. Man, life is weird, huh?

June, 2021 — You fall asleep in a park in the middle of reading a book. If you're a guy, you wake up with a visible erection. If you're a girl, your boob has fallen out of your sundress. You lose 10 points of Intelligence and 5 points of Agility and have to replay the book from the beginning.

November, 2021 — Mitt Romney is found dead inside the sixth part of a set of oversized Russian nesting dolls you auction at Sotheby's.

Thanksgiving, 2022 — You spend 3 minutes and 41 seconds sitting on a couch next to your in-laws as the main characters of a movie talk about what old semen smells like.

Decemeber, 2022 — Everyone you have ever worked with simultaneously sends you a LinkedIn invitation and a request that you endorse them for "project management." Meanwhile, one of your current coworkers begins mentioning you—not by name, but it's obvious that it's you—in her weight-loss blog, which she includes in her Gchat status that everyone can see because you're all supposed to be on Gchat so you can talk to each other if it's not important enough for email but you still have a question. She doesn't say bad things about you, necessarily, but it's not exactly positive, either. Exactly three weeks before Christmas, you find 21 origami cranes—20 white, 1 black—mounted to your front door frame via a pin stuck through their bodies. She doesn't say anything, but you know it's her, with her hair chopsitcks and her elegant mahogany sushi box. You take them down, but each morning, they're all back—save another white crane that's disappeared. On Christmas Eve, only the black one is left. You awake on Christmas to discover that you have become a bird. Your loved ones take turns vomiting into your mouth to keep you alive. You are accidentally killed by a magician.

Many thanks to Mallory Ortberg, General Ze'evi and Mark Brendle, who threw some jokes into the pot.

[Image via sdecoret/Shutterstock]