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December 14, 2012

NASH: I feel fine

This has been a very busy year for my family. I have been involved in a few weddings this year including one of my nieces, my oldest son and even my own. I have visited seven different states this year, unless you include time spent just in airports, and then it jumps to nine. Our family bought a new car and I got a new bicycle. We got six more chicks, said good-bye to three, hatched another, and inherited a new cat.  

After spending the first 49 weeks of 2012 keeping myself so busy, I am wondering how to spend the days leading up to Dec. 21, 2012, the day some people are predicting the world will come to an end. I am not saying that I necessarily believe in the prediction, but I am going to be on alert, just in case.

Over the years there have been various predictions about the end of the world. Most of them were religious fanatics trying to get some publicity, trying desperately to sell a few books. Even some main stream religious leaders have “prophesied”  about the end of days or Rapture. Even mainstream religious leaders including Jerry Farwell and Pat Robertson have made prediction about when the end is near, but those days have come and gone. For some reason this year’s prognostication has got a lot more traction.

Some people believe that the world could end by some cataclysmic event based on the alignment of the planets in our solar system. Others have pointed to a possible reversal of the poles due to solar flares.  There are some who believe that the Earth will be sucked into a black hole that is located at the center of the Milky Way Galaxy and others who have asserted that we are on a collision course with a planet called Nibiru.  

The reasoning behind this idea that the world may end next week comes from the idea that the Mayan Calendar abruptly ends at the beginning of this year’s winter solstice. Some scholars argue that when a calendar ends, you simply turn the page to a new one. The idea that a pre-Columbian tribe of Central America could predict an event that would occur 2,000 years later does seem a little far fetched.  

I heard about the predictions about the end of the world several years ago, even before it went public with the major motion picture in 2012 starring John Cusack as a struggling science fiction writer and part-time limousine driver that tries to keep his family alive during catastrophic events of the year 2012. I was discussing it with a co-worker who follows astrology very closely and believes in other mystic disciplines and even believed he had his own psychic ability. He assured me that next Friday is not the actual day for the end of the world. He was so passionate about his ability that we made a friendly wager about 12/21/2012,  that’s one bet I really hope I lose.

The “hysteria” has gotten so mainstream that NASA has had to put out an official statement regarding what they know about the end of the world. They claim that there is no astronomical event that will cause the world to end. “There is no credible for any of the assertions made in support of unusual events taking place in December 2012.” I just hope that arguably the smartest people on the planet know what they are talking about.

I have a few regrets in my life, places I haven’t visited, things I haven’t seen or done — I have always believed that I have plenty of time to do them. Next Thursday night I will go to bed under the impression that I will wake up just fine on Friday morning. I might take some time before retiring and call my parents, text my children and give my wife a big kiss goodnight. Then, in the morning, I guess I will have to go ahead and finish my Christmas shopping.

This year has been a great year for me personally on several levels and for the sports teams that I follow.  The Cincinnati Reds had one of their best seasons in a while, although it ended abruptly in the first round of the playoffs. The Indiana Hoosiers soccer team won its eighth NCAA championship and the basketball team is currently undefeated and ranked No. 1 and have been very exciting to watch. I was a little apprehensive when the Colts dropped Peyton Manning but so far the gamble has paid off for both parties and they have exceeded current expectations with Andrew Luck. I will be a little disappointed not to be able to see how these, and other situations will eventually play out, but who knows, we may still get a chance.

Almost every year, someone, somewhere is predicting that the world is going to end. This year’s prediction seems to have gotten a lot more attention for some reason. With all of these predictions, it seems that eventually someone will get it right.  Hopefully we will all be long gone before that happens. Next week may or may not be the end of the world (as we know it) but that’s OK because I feel fine.

— Matthew Nash can be reached at dmatthewnash@gmail.com …at least for now!

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