New beginning for the new world

To say that I was disappointed with the Mayan prophecy proving to be a bust would be untrue.

As I stood facing what I believed to be the direction of Guatemala alongside Interstate 10 in El Paso, Texas, I anticipated a big bang of some kind, or perhaps a brilliant flash. I was humbled to learn that I was just wasting my time.

Rarely am I prepared. Even more rarely am I ahead of the curve. Whether by nature or nurture, I am lazy. Although largely for stylistic purposes, sometimes my procrastination manifests itself as an untimely and fruitless endeavor. However, in the days leading up to what many believed to be the end of the world, I was ready.

Claiming “readiness” in a pre-apocalyptic real or delusional setting is, of course, absurd at best. Even I know this. There are simply far too many variables of which one must take account.

Nevertheless, there I stood – ready and waiting – and nothing happened.

I didn’t expect frogs to fall from the sky, but I felt poised for the unexpected. Having chaos ensue all around me was among the least of my honest desires. While I was relieved that we suffered no nuclear winter, I admit I hoped for some kind of change.

If I’m being honest, I dreamed the wildest and most fantastical of idealistic ways that the entire world would right itself by doing away with all the trials and tribulations that we have inflected upon ourselves. Clearly, “the end of the world” was more metaphorical than tangible in my mind.

In the days and weeks that followed, I sat patiently thinking that the coming “end of the world as we know it” transformation was just as lazy, just as much of a procrastinator as I am.

Now a week into the uncharted waters of 2013, it would appear that everything is simply business as usual.

At one point I assumed it was just me who was tired from the daily grind, but given our inability to right our many wrongs, it would appear that I’m not the only lazy person left.

Comfort is preferred. We’ve become far too indulgent and reliant on far too many manufactured comforts that have yet to yield any net benefits on a societal level.

With the passing of yet another failed doomsday scenario, perhaps we can finally realize that we control our own destiny. To do that, in the most logical sense of reasoning, we must actually attempt to work together.

We are no longer living on borrowed time before “the end of the world.” There really is no justification for excuses. While this sounds preachy and from a place of condemnation, it isn’t meant to be.

Our window of opportunity to make the world a better place slips farther and farther away with each passing day we turn to our DVR to catch up on the reality shows we’ve missed as opposed to creating an actual reality in which we all want to live.

In the end, only time will tell, but in the meantime and every possible in-between, we are behind the wheel. This requires a certain amount of self-reflection. It is our responsibility to begin to conduct ourselves in a way that suggests we know what we are doing.

Otherwise, 2013 will be just like the rest.

 

Reach the columnist at jbfortne@asu.edu or follow the columnist at @JOMOFO40

 

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