“We’re all gonna die!” It seemed very funny to shout that during a fire drill my freshman year at Cicero High School. It was still funny to my friend John Martin and I after we realized our only consequence would be a stern talking to by the principal. Yes, when confronted I dragged my friend into it. He dared me to, I said.
What happened was that in the midst of 2000 students being evacuated from our high school I turned to my friend John and said, Do you dare me to yell “We’re all gonna die?” Of course John took me up on my offer and unwittingly became my accomplice when I caught heat from the man. At the time I was young and foolish with no concept of my own mortality. I thought death was something to be laughed at.
I no longer think death is funny. I generally still do not believe in my own mortality, but I’m starting to hedge my bets in this regard. Just because it happens to other people doesn’t mean it will happen to me. As my mother always said, “If your friend jumped off a bridge does that mean you have to?” Much to my mother’s eternal satisfaction I am answering NO. If you want to die, go ahead and do it, but I refuse to be a follower.
My problem is that yesterday a meteor or meteors filled the sky over Russia and actually hurt some people. Also some scientists with a telescope larger than a third world country notified us that an asteroid would be buzzing our planet today close enough to knock some branches off of the trees in my back yard. I may not believe that I’m going to die, but I’m not completely unrealistic. I will admit than an asteroid, in most cases, is larger than me and if it hit me in the head I would have a hard time surviving that. Yes, I know I have a large head, but not large enough that it has it’s own gravitational pull.
Who I’m really angry at is the scientists. Damn them and their ever inquisitive minds! Why did they have to tell me this? Did anyone here really want to know that getting hit by an asteroid the size of Rhode Island is a possibility? In this case ignorance is bliss. Why couldn’t the scientists just leave well enough alone? My entire life I’ve been at the top of the food chain and that has been a pretty secure feeling. Now this. Now I have to spend the rest of my life staring up at the sky looking for asteroids.
In general I figure that if a really big one hit the Earth I’d be fine as long as it didn’t hit me directly in the head. Maybe all this is why the scientists developed the male birth control pill. They just figured that if we’re all gonna die then we might as well start getting jiggy with it. Yes, that’s right, I said jiggy. I’m bringin’ jiggy back. In fact, that’s probably the new science geek pick up line. “Hey baby, you know we might get hit by an asteroid any minute, so why don’t you just go ahead and get jiggy with me? Obviously I’m cool enough to say jiggy, but the scientists aren’t.
When I’m elected President, or Sexiest Man Alive, whichever comes first, I’m going to pass a law stating that if the scientists see an asteroid headed our way, unless they have some way to make the entire planet duck out of the way they should just shut the hell up.
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