Saturday, May 21, 2011


Saturday, May 21, 2011, 2:48 AM, EST:

By now, you all know what I'm going to tell you.  The world did not end as predicted by Camping the Crackpot:

Christmas Island and other locations near New Zealand, where self-styled scriptural scholar Harold Camping predicted that the apocalypse would strike by Friday night Los Angeles time, so far remain free of "super terrible" earthquakes.

The 89-year-old Oakland-based doomsday predictor told his followers that destruction would begin on May 21, wherever it happens to be 6 p.m. New Zealand is 19 hours ahead of Pacific Daylight Saving Time.

As of 10:30 p.m. PDT -- 7:30 p.m. May 21 on Christmas Island, also known as Kiritimati -- no earthquakes had been reported within the last hour and a half, according to theU.S. Geological Survey, which tracks seismic activity worldwide.

It is times like this that I think my atheist friends have the right idea.

In the United States, where Camping's evangelising organisation is based, some people had been quitting work and hitting the road to urge others to repent before it's too late.

Gregory LeCorps left his job weeks ago to take his wife and five young children on the road and warn others that the end really was nigh, the Journal News in New York wrote.

"We're in the final days," LeCorps, who said he hoped to be on a beach in South Carolina by Saturday, was quoted by the newspaper as saying.

It's not just us goofy Americans who bought into this nonsense:

In Vietnam, thousands of ethnic Hmong converged on northwestern Dien Bien province a few weeks ago after hearing broadcasts on Camping's global religious broadcasting network that Jesus was coming on May 21.

Hundreds were believed to be hiding in forests after security forces dispersed those who were awaiting the supposed return of Jesus Christ on Saturday, a resident told AFP.

Right now, there are millions of people the world over who are saddened and depressed because the Rapture did not occur today.  No earthquakes, no other destructive forces of nature, no dead rising from the graves.  So many disappointed people ...  so many victims of a world wide scam ... yeah, I'm talking about YOU, boy ... good thing this Camping dude was just interested in your life savings rather than your life, because if he had been Jim Jones, you would have willingly drunk the Kool-Aid.

It's all about the money, stupid ... you've been scammed.  Didn't you put 2 + 2 together when you saw this?

Despite his latest prediction, as of 20 May 2011 Family Radio's website was offering special promotions which expired on 28 May 2011.

According to their most recent IRS filings, Family Radio is almost entirely funded by donations, and brought in $18 million in contributions in 2009 alone.

Camping first inaccurately predicted the world would end in 1994. Even so, he has gathered even more followers -- some who have given up their homes, entire life savings and their jobs because they believe the world is ending.

By the way, as of 11:49 AM EST, Camping's Family Radio site is down.

I was wondering, how do evangelists like Camping reconcile the whole Armageddon scenario with the story of Noah and the Ark?  If I remember correctly, the rainbow that appeared when the weather finally cleared was a sign of God's covenant with Noah that he would never again destroy the world by flooding it.  Camping specifically stated that the End of the World would begin with a massive earthquake that would travel from time zone to time zone.  Now I am neither a meteorologist nor a seismologist, but it seems to me that when Japan was recently hit by earthquake, the greatest and most long lasting damage came from the accompanying floods.  Tsunamis are caused by earthquakes, dude.

At any rate, I'm relieved because I had already purchased the tickets for our cruise onboard the Carnival Dream starting next week.   And for all those New Yorkers who were looking forward to Mayor Bloomberg's suspension of alternate side of the street parking in the event of Armageddon, I am truly sorry.

So Rob and I are sailing off to the "Exotic" Western Caribbean, leaving Cory home to fend for himself.  Oy, the guilt!  Well, the very best way for a Jewish mother to assuage the guilt is to cook, and that, my friends, is what I have planned.  Heaven forbid my child should open the refrigerator and not find it stuffed with all sorts of precooked hot meals.  But it is Saturday, and I am feeling exceedingly lazy, so rather than get dressed and head out to Publix, I'll work with the contents of my refrigerator, freezers, and pantry.  More on that later.

I am getting very excited about the cruise.  Today I bit the bullet and booked all of our shore excursions and a dinner at the steakhouse.  Needless to say, I did not book any of the scuba, snuba, snorkel, or beach trips.  Swimmers we're not, and if I wanted sun and sand, I would have stayed home.  I also did not book one of those zipline tours - crashing through the jungle suspended from a clothesline looks like a lot of fun on TV, but so does bungee-jumping. 

By the way, I just posted a recipe at the recipe blog site, for a mac and cheese with attitude!  The boys both really liked it, although Cory expressed doubt over some of the stuff I was adding to his notion of a basic, good mac and cheese.  Once he tasted it, thought, doubt evaporated like a puddle on the streets of Little Rock in the middle of the summer.  Rapidly.  How does it get to be 104 degrees in the mountains???  When I was a kid, we went to the Catskill Mountains to escape the heat!

Let me end this with a little something from one of my junior cuzzes.  I think she's got it all figured out.  So Victoria wrote:

"i figured the end of the world would be more chaotic then this, you know maybe some destruction, fire, screaming, etc. but no this is an upsetting disappointment...or maybe we are all just living in hell already. you never know this could all be a dream of some random person in the 1700s and we all don't actually exist."

Now there's something to chew on ...

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