Friday, May 29, 2009

Mary in the Pre-Apocalyptic World

Man, I hope I die when the bombs start falling.

Don't get me wrong: I'm not suicidal or anything, but I have been reading The Road. And Cat's Cradle. And I saw that Terminator movie. In fact, a lot of post-apocalyptic things have been coming across my desk lately and I'm not so sure I could handle that (living in the post-apocalyptic world, that is, not reading about it). It just seems really hard to be witness to the last sputterings of civilization, and right now I am so not in the mood.

I'm good with hardship, actually. In fact, one of my companions noticed that the worse things get, the more cheerful I am. Over compensating, I guess. I like to think (wouldn't we all?) that I'd be good even in a "critical time:" Leningrad during the War, Nagasaki after the War, etc. I even thrive on short-term hardship (as far as I've been permitted to know it), because it's so hard-core, so, in Jamie's terms, "club." If I've got any reasonable hope that things'll get better, I'm on board in a big optimistic way. But knowing that the world is coming to pieces? That's different.

This fear of the end of the world may be why the rapture is so appealing to Christians. Hard times coming and all of us out of the way, suddenly, painlessly, and easily. Unfortunately, Mormons are less optimistic about our role in the end of days, about which John cheerlessly writes, "shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them" (Rev 9:6, as if I need to provide footnotes on my personal musings...sheesh, academia...). Dr. Huntsman once, when we were discussing these chapters, mused that the Saints will not be entirely immune to all of the horrors of the end of days. (And may I remind you those horrors include such things as eyeballs falling from men's sockets and immoliation by firey hail?) Direct statements about the end of days by recent prophets have been more sparce, but doesn't look good.

I'm not one for stockpiling water and food, but I think I could use the kind of mental toughness that leads one to be a "surviver." I'm pretty sure I'd be the person in Titanic who jumps and hits the propeller. Lots of good hussel, but not a chance. Thwack.


Jamie said...

Yes, much of life is indeed club. Being in the midst of moving to Belgium AND having bronchitis AND finding that our landlord let our flat out to someone else, I'm definitely in the clubbin' mode myself at the moment. But then again, eat (healthy), drink (orange juice), and be merry, and be righteous while you're at it, so (as Dr. Huntsman also said) we can drink up that wine with Jesus in heaven. See, there's always that silver cloud to every lining. . .

So let my eyeballs fall out. Things will be okay. And in the words of my father, who takes his words from The Emperor's New Groove (as they're about to fall off the waterfall):

Bring it.

Margaret said...

I'm with you Mary. I really love this cushy, sophisticated world where I don't have to fight off legions of marauders with my trusty shotgun. I like looking at Olin and worrying about things like ear infections and street-crossing safety rather than food and shelter.

I'm not saying a little suffering wouldn't be good for me. I'm just saying: "Who (besides Nephi and Alma, etc.), ever really wanted what was good for them?"

Makayla said...

Hm. That was a completely different response than I had to "The Road."

I don't like Apocalyptic or post-Apocalyptic movies though. And I hate lessons on signs of the times. And I just hope that if I have to die in the pre-millennium moment that I just get hit really hard with one of those 70lb hailstones and make a clean, sweet break.