It was a Tuesday morning when the first brimstone fell. Crashing onto vehicles, and landing on the streets, it made traffic quite a hassle. Many drivers simply crashed headfirst into the cataclysmic debris or confusedly stopped and honked for minutes on end. Despite all the honking, the brimstone didn’t move, and it didn’t stop. And neither did the apocalypse.
Of course it made the news when the horses began to eat each other. And the blood rain obviously made the weather report. Everybody knew about it, but it seemed that most people simply did not care. Religious groups panicked, and many of the feeble-minded snapped, but they were in the minority. People had jobs to go to, and families to feed. It wasn’t the first time horrible events were broadcast on the news.
Sure it was bad when the first plague began. And when it swept the world, killing millions, there was a charity concert to help raise money for a cure. Some people donated, but most chose not to. The United States managed to avoid the worst of the plague’s casualties, but its citizens still felt bad about it. Thoughts and prayers were sent, Facebook profile pictures were changed, but hardly anyone lost sleep over it.
It was far from ideal when the swarms of locusts arrived. Food was scarce for a while, but eventually pesticides were developed to deal with the problem. The fruits and vegetables grew once more, you just had to wash them first. The dead locusts made excellent fertilizer when they were processed and ground down.
A child was born on July 6th, at 6:00 PM with goat horns and a birthmark the shape of an upside down cross. In just a few days he grew into an adult, and became a sensation on American Idol for his appearance and angelic voice. One night he gave a famous speech in which he promised to lead America through the apocalypse and announced his candidacy for president. Some people voted for him, but most didn’t.
When the four horsemen arrived, they all got interviews on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News. They spread messages of humanity’s guilt and inevitable punishment. These were broadcast in diners, bars, restaurants, and businesses across the country. People watched, just as they watched all the rest of the news, but little changed.
People still worked 40 hour work weeks, went to school, bought groceries, and continued their lives. It got a little bit harder when the portals to hell split open and hot magma leaked through cracks in the Earth. Nevertheless, people had their own personal dramas to deal with and were largely unfazed.
It was a Tuesday morning when the world ended. There was no defining moment of realization or mass panic. No overreaction or upheaval. There were no widespread riots, and few even quit their jobs.
Rather, when the deafening fires of the apocalypse spread throughout the world it was found that the way the world ended was not with a bang, but with an indifferent sigh.
(This story was recently written by my sixteen-year-old son, Daniel, for his creative writing class. I’ll tell you this, I sure couldn’t write that well at his age!)