It is about 6:00 p.m. on May 20th on the island of Okinawa - and according to Biblical "expert" and radio beggar Harold Camping, the Rapture could begin here as early as six hours from now. Although Mr. Camping did not get specific about time zones - which are an invention of man - he is predicting that the beginning of the end will start on May 21st when all of God's chosen will be raptured or airlifted off into Heaven, and the rest of us heathen will have to sit around enduring wars, pestilence, reality tv, and crappy weather until the world comes to its ultimate end this October.
If I had to guess, I would set the Rapture Clock by Colorado Springs time.
Harold Camping, a math whiz who bases his predictions on Biblical passages and hints provided by God's ghostwriters, has somehow figured out that May 21st is the 7,000th anniversary of Noah's flood - which somehow makes the Rapture and subsequent carnage inevitable. Of course, Old Harold also predicted the same end for the world back in 1994 - and lived past that doomsday to tell the tale again. But now he has a better calculator and knows that tomorrow is the big day!
Harold is in his eighties - tomorrow could be his big day!
While I remain skeptical of religious con-artists from the Pope to Billy Graham to Harold Camping, I have to admit that a small part of me hopes Camping is right - at least about the Rapture portion of his prediction. Hopefully God won't be too picky and will suck up all of these sanctimonious right-wing bastards who have been preaching hate in Her name for longer than even Fox News can document. Couldn't all of us sinners have a great time promoting fairness and justice on the planet when all of those hate-mongers-for-Jesus get beamed-up! True, that would completely erase the fifteen or so contenders for the Republican Presidential nomination, but maybe they could find ways to glorify themselves in Heaven - and large amounts of cash with which to do it.
I just hope that God realizes what She is letting Herself in for - Joe Arpaio standing out in front of the Pearly Gates scaring off Mexicans, Nancy Grace roaming the Streets of Gold to make certain that all of the good white girls arrived safely, Michele Bachmann giving her own response to the Lord's Prayer, Ted Haggard trying to rent an angel for sex, Arnold just being Arnold...
As Joseph Conrad would have summed it up, "The horror! The horror!"
I'm not packing a bag because I doubt that I am on the list to fly off - and I am damned picky about those with whom I travel. But I may sit out on my balcony, have a drink or two, and salute the pious as they ascend. They will be glad to go, and I will be glad they went.
And if Harold Camping proves to have miscalculated - yet again - there will soon be another crackpot coming down the road to start the madness all over again. The Earth does not suffer from a shortage of fools.