Super Student: Doomsday prophecy or a unique chance for commercial gain?

Tony Reiss

Tony ReissSuper Student

In a little more than a year, the world will begin to hold its collective breath in anticipation for the Mayan doomsday prophecy. For those of you who haven’t tuned into History, TLC, The Discovery Channel or AM radio broadcasts from Topeka, there is a widely-held belief that the Mayans have predicted that the end of the world will occur on Dec. 21, 2012. Some say the Mayans used their knowledge of astronomy to establish a long count calendar. The current long count is set to expire on Dec. 21, 2012.

I don’t put too much faith in doomsday prophecies. People have been preaching the end of time since time began. While growing up, I read a comic strip called B.C. From my best recollection, B.C. was an academic-based comic that attempted to teach children about pre-historic times. There was one character in the strip who was frequently seen holding a stone tablet that read “Repent Now … The End Is Near.” Because this comic is purely academic, it can safely be assumed that the tablet is real. The comic takes place millions of years ago, so it is safe to say that the end-time predictions have been around for millions of years.

The end of the world likely will not occur in 2012, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a conspiracy involving end-time prophecies. The 2012 doomsday prophecy reminds me a lot of the Y2K scare at the turn of the millennium. The two are not unrelated. When people believe that there is going to be an interruption in normalcy, they tend to stock up on items necessary for survival, mainly water and food. The end of the world certainly qualifies as an interruption normalcy.

So here we are, millions of people expecting a cataclysmic event to occur in 2012 now stocking up on canned goods and bottled water. To get to the root of the conspiracy you need to follow the money. Who stands to profit the most from a doomsday prophecy? If you answered George Soros, you’re wrong. The correct answer is the makers of canned food and bottled water. I fully expect Andrew Breitbart to introduce a website called Big Non-perishable Goods any day now.

While the end of the world likely won’t occur in 2012, the end is most certainly near. And this ending is far more eminent. The end I speak of is just a couple of months away. If all goes according to plan, the end of my undergraduate days will occur this May.

When I started out, the end seemed very far away. So far away that it was almost frustrating. My year-long venture as an SDSU Jackrabbit has, so far, been a great one. The object of this column is to chronicle my experience as a non-traditional student experiencing, in one year, the events that a traditional student experiences in four. I think I have made some exceptional progress achieving that goal.

A quick recap of what I have accomplished during the fall semester includes numerous football games. I have also been witness to numerous performances from the Pride of the Dakotas, including the performance of the theme song to Hawaii Five-O. I’m curious to learn if ABC paid the Pride to play that song.

My most recent experience was a basketball doubleheader against North Dakota State University. I had never been to a basketball game before so I was pretty excited to go to the game with my friend Eagle who is a basketball expert. Eagle taught be everything I know about basketball. Until that night I had always thought basketball involved mallets and hoops. I now know that I was confusing basketball for croquet.

I hope you enjoy reading this column as much as I do writing it. I look forward to filling you in on my experiences this spring.

Good Luck!

Tony is a nontraditional student majoring in economics. Contact him at [email protected].