Advice for the End of the World

 

Put on Clean Underwear

 

For your own sake, I mean. You’ll feel more confident and optimistic, if you’re wearing fresh underpants. Trust me.

 

Eat a Healthy Snack

 

You can’t know in advance how long you’re going to have to wait for the curtain to come down on human history. Why be hungry?

 

Buddy System

 

It worked at summer camp, and it’ll work for the Rapture.

 

Go Ahead, Feel Sorry for Yourself — It’s Okay

 

Normally I disapprove of self-pity. But there’s a time and place for just about everything, and the prospect of being incinerated is legitimately pretty awful. So have your pity party, and then move on.

 

Take a Moment to Look Around

 

You’re going to be very busy scurrying around and trying to save yourself. That doesn’t mean, however, that you can’t pause and reflect. You might have lived in any era in human history, but you’re lucky enough to have been alive when Earth exploded! So take it all in and try to appreciate this moment.

 

Be Willing to Vary Your Routine

 

On a typical Wednesday morning, you would be at your desk, sipping your second cup of coffee as you reply to emails. Interrupting your routine to deal with an apocalypse would make anyone grumpy. Don’t let it.

 

Remember Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni

 

You may think to yourself, “But what did I accomplish in my life?” Instead, since it’s actually the end of all humanity, you could choose to say, “Michelangelo painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, sculpted the David and Pietà, designed St. Peter’s Basilica, wrote poetry, didn’t drink, and slept in his clothes. You know what? For a species, we did okay.”

 

Have a Plan for Your Pets

 

Who knows? You may be able to take them with you.

 

Keep Your Bucket List, Just in Case

 

As you’re tidying up — suppose aliens visit earth a million years from now, and the first thing they see is the mess you left behind — don’t throw out your bucket list. There’s some chance that after the radiation begins to diminish, you can go see what’s left of the Galapagos.

 

Sunscreen and Hat!

 

When the Sun goes supernova, it’s going to be something like 100 million degrees on Earth. You are not going to want to be without a hat and a liberal amount of sunscreen.

 

No One Likes a Gloomy Gus or Debbie Downer

 

Look, there’s no question that the end of everything is going to make most of us feel a bit sad. Do everyone a favor, though. Cheer up. Smile through the tears. After all, do you want to be part of the solution, or part of the problem?

 

Remain Open-Minded

 

Can you be certain that succumbing to poisonous gases won’t have an up side? How do you know for sure that the desertification of the entire planet won’t create new opportunities for everyone?

 

Did You Leave the Stove On?

 

Nothing is more irritating for the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse than having someone say, “Wait! I think I may have left the stove on!” This is when a checklist can come in very handy.

 

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