Henry: Making the best of an ominous Mayan forecast

Posted on January 24, 2012 in Henry's Head, Perspectives
By Andrew Henry

Every new year is a chance to start over, to wipe off all the figurative grime and gunk clean from life’s slate. We are given a chance to set resolutions to better our lives and, if diligent, the lives of others as well.

But not this year. Oh, no. This is our final year.

This is the year that the Mayan calendar ends, which signifies the ending of life itself and the destruction of the entire human race. There are two popular opinions about this conundrum. “It will never happen,” say most people. “There’s no evidence to back up this claim. Stop saying it’s true.”

Oh really? Let’s talk about the Mayans for a minute.

The Mayans did many things that we as a culture are still working to figure out. To put it in perspective, it takes an average person just a few minutes to figure out how to work an iPad in the Apple store. It’s taken us hundreds of years to figure out how a bunch of Mayans built a pyramid roughly 100 feet high in Chichen Itza. I’ve been there and climbed it, and I can tell you it’s a sight to behold.

The Mayans were hardcore, the “Beast Mode” of civilizations, for you Call of Duty fans out there.

These were a people who regularly played an ancient version of basketball in which the losing team had to be sacrificed to the gods. They were clearly committed to doing whatever it took to show off their dominance.

Because the end of the world is so, well, nigh, this is the year to do whatever you so desire. Behave how you want to behave. Those resolutions? Forget about them. Instead of cutting back on chocolate, go crazy with it. Serve chocolate on things, in things, with things, as things; make it your job to have a constant sugar hangover.

In order to maximize your final year, however, you have to think realistically in terms of what you can accomplish. You won’t be able to do anything that requires a great amount of training. Instead, consider many things that require little training, with maximal fun as the end result (and only concern).

Now that bowling on top of Mount Everest is out of the question, I’ve got a few suggestions as to activities that would be suitable. Traveling is a great way to spend time and money. Typical vacation hot spots include the more tropical regions or European countries. I suggest this: go somewhere abandoned, and destroy it. As a kid, didn’t you always want to go somewhere and just break stuff? That’s exactly what this is. Breaking stuff. But this time around, it’s not your best friend’s tree fort or your sister’s Barbie collection. It’s big boy stuff, like entire walls and cars.

My personal choice is something that everyone has wanted to do: dance in public. I’m not talking about a little head-bobbing on the bus. Oh, no. I’m talking about a full-on dance-o-rama across the mall. You and a friend (or many, many friends), a boombox, a beat-heavy song, and parading around a given public location dancing wherever you please, on whatever you please. It’s like that scene in Footloose where Kevin Bacon dances in the warehouse, only with less ‘80s music,and less Kevin Bacon.

It’s your last year. Have a little fun. No, have all the fun in the world. And remember, if the naysayers win and this ends up being just another year…well, you’re on your own with that one.

Andrew Henry is an English major in his junior year.