GateHouse — IMPORTANT RAPTURE PREFACE: When you’re making snarky jokes about the end of the world with your 7-year-old and his friends, it is important to ASSURE THEM THAT IT IS NOT ACTUALLY HAPPENING, because first and second-graders are WAY less plugged into the notion of hilarious dark sarcasm than us adults. Have you ever seen the look on the face of a second-grader who’s just spent a day at the beach until 5:15 p.m., and then hears that the world is ending at 6? It is the most heartbreaking thing ever.
Actually, it’s the runner-up. More heartbreaking are the boulder-dumb pudding-brains who subscribe to the overcaffeinated blustering of a crazypants octogenarian on AM radio, people whose places in the world, whether by dumb luck or a series of incredibly questionable decisions, grew so suffocating that their best option became hoping for a planet-cleansing fireball. And sure, in that case your “rapture” is actually “justify the fundamental lousiness of your life by assigning yourself some sort of self-assigned supernatural superiority,” but in any event, WHOA super-depressing right?
My apologies in advance for beating a dead apocalypse, and I think we can agree that if there’s a rapture joke that hasn’t been made yet it exists only in an undiscovered dimension, but try to imagine preparing — literally preparing, doubtlessly, devoutly — for the Actual End Of Days, and then waking up at 8:23 a.m. Sunday to find the world spinning normally, life proceeding in its well-carved patterns, everything pretty much free of devastating earthquakes and horsemen.