YES! Weekly’s Ten Best signs of the Apocalypse

by Brian Clarey

The appearance of the Four Horsemen

If you’re reading this issue, then it’s likely the ominous date of 06-06-06 has come and gone. And if the day was met with water turning to blood and fire streaming from the heavens’… well, then the joke’s on us. That’s not to say we don’t take the concept of Armageddon seriously. In fact we believe it’s right around the corner. Witness the appearance of the Four Horsemen as prophesied in the Bible: war (we’re waging it on several fronts right now); pestilence (can anybody say ‘“bird flu’”?); death (we’re all gonna die, people); and famine (surely there are hungry people somewhere; I myself am absolutely starving). Can judgment day be far behind?

The finger of God

The last few years have been marked by some of the worst natural disasters in recorded history. On Dec 26, 2004 an earthquake off the coast of Indonesia launched a tsunami in the Indian Ocean that washed over 11 nations and killed more than 200,000 people. Wildfires scorched the desert areas of the western US eight months a year. In 2005 a hurricane-induced flood wiped out huge swaths of the Gulf Coast. And right here in town we had marble-sized hail (and we’re talking kimmies, not shooters) denting the hoods of our cars in the middle of May.

The Boston Red Sox

I don’t hate the Boston Red Sox. I feel sorry for them, and it has ever been thus. When Bucky freakin’ Dent homered in the seventh inning of the ’78 American League playoff game, when the ball went between Bill Buckner’s legs in Game Six at Shea in ’86 and every other Sox meltdown I witnessed over the years was proof that all was right and normal with the world. When they won the 2004 AL Championship Series by sweeping the last four games of the series against the Yankees I dismissed it as an aberration. But when they won the World Series in four games I started to get scared. And when Johnny Damon cut his hair to don Yankee pinstripes, I became sure that the end was near.

Free porn

When I was a 13-year-old boy in 1983, if you had told me there would be flying cars by the year 2000 I would have believed you without a moment’s hesitation. If you had revealed to that same awkward ‘tweener that after the turn of the century pornography would be abundant and free, he would have said, ‘“Up your nose with a rubber hose.’” Or maybe ‘“Sit on it.’” And yet here we are, living in an age when hardcore pornography is easier to get than a haircut. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with pornography ‘— I’m just saying it does not bode well.

666 as a marketing tool

It’s true: There’s no such thing as bad PR. But we question the wisdom of linking your product with a day that’s got holy rollers everywhere quaking in their sensible shoes. The remake of The Omen is set for release on 06/06/06, and we guess that one makes a little bit of sense, as the original version of that movie is what got most folks freaked out about those numbers in the first place. And we could make a case for the release of Ann Coulter’s book, Godless: The Church of Liberalism, the same day, because there are many who feel that she has a real and personal relationship with the red horned one. But why speed-metal band Slayer would declare June 6, 2006 as the ‘“National Day of Slayer’” is beyond our meager comprehension.

God’s chosen ones given

superhuman strength

Did you know that televangelist, politico and aging loudmouth Pat Robertson can leg press 2,000 pounds? That’s a whole ton! A cubic yard of saltwater! A Mini-Cooper! The 76-year-old founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network says he was able to accomplish this feat, which eclipsed the Florida State University all-time record of 1,335 set by Seminole quarterback Dan Kendra in the ’90s (an effort which caused the capillaries in his eyes to burst), with the help of an ‘“age-defying’” protein shake, the recipe for which is available to subscribers of the CBN website. Ostensibly he’ll be able to use his super quadriceps to fight the terrors of the final days. Hey Pat: How much ya bench?

Keith Richards is still alive

Keith Richards, the incubus-like guitarist for the Rolling Stones, is older than my dad. He’s taken more ‘“booze, pills and powders’” than any three Beat poets combined. His face looks like it’s been beaten with a meat hammer, stomped on with golf spikes and then left in the smokehouse to dry. And his history of risky behavior is too extensive to chronicle in this space. Yet he’s not only still walking around, he seems to be thriving. Not even his recent tumble from a coconut tree in Fiji slowed him down. Either this guy is as tough as a catcher’s mitt or something purely evil is keeping him around.

Teachers having sex with students

As much as we complain every time we hear of a hot young teacher seducing her students, as much as we bemoan the fact that these things just didn’t happen when we were young and in school, we must admit that there’s something terribly disturbing about the trend. It’s a breakdown of the social contract that’s implicit in our school system, is what it is. And if you believe the bottom-feeders over at (and we do, we do), it’s something that happens with alarming frequency. Any scenario that pits a teenage boy having sex with a hot older authority figure has got to be bad for our collective moral fiber.

We’re turning up the heat

The real scientists (and Al Gore) have spoken: Global warming does, in fact, exist. Every year since 1992 has made it to the top 20 list of the warmest on record and pretty soon the polar ice caps will look like slushies’… dirty, penguin flavored slushies. And ‘— here’s the kicker ‘— it’s our own damn fault.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Muslims and Jews going at it in the cradle of civilization? This is truly a scenario of Biblical proportions, and things there are really starting to heat up. But if you believe the dispensationalist Christians, this land was promised to the Israelites in the Old Testament and when the Jews finally return to the Holy Land it will signal the beginning of the end. Of course, the dispensationalists also believe that the Jews are going to hell at the end of the ballgame because they haven’t yet accepted Jesus Christ. But thanks for playing!