So you’ve got 24 hours left…

I was going to post another episode of the BrightCast today, but I’ve lost my voice. It’s bad enough that my work colleagues are laughing at my pathetic croaking, without exposing myself to the ridicule of the entire bloody ‘Net, so you’re gonna have to wait a few days till the sandpaper wielding gremlins have given up their attack on my larynx.

In the mean time, I have a question for you – what would you do if it was your last day on earth? *1*

In the office today we got talking today about it being the 6th day of the 6th month of the 6th year an all that jazz. Now, I’m such a lapsed Christian that I am pretty much approaching it from the other side, and none of us were too clear on the significance of the day, but we were all under the general impression that it wasn’t a good day. Birth of the anti-christ, general badness, that sort of thing.

So I got thinking about this whole superstition about numbers. Everyone says 13 is such an unlucky number – well, my brother was born on the 13th, so it wasn’t too bad for him (though through the years I might have cursed his birth a time or three. He is my older brother, after all, and was a right sod when we were growing up). As far as I’m concerned it’s not the date that’s significant, it’s the people. As Jack points out, 6th of June 1944 saw the beginning of the Allied invasion of Europe – if I have to remember a day, I’d far rather celebrate it because of something positive (as much as war ever can be positive), than fear it mainly because of a horror film has pushed a day into the zeitgeist.

Despite not actually believing the world was about to come to an end, one other thing we were all pretty certain on in the office was that, if this was to be the end of the world as we know it, none of us would choose to spend it making bus passes. Or in my case fighting the printer and our CMS – when it goes down (as it does, constantly) it’s our very own little doomsday scenario.

Whilst we knew what we wouldn’t want to do if it were to be the end of the world, thinking what we would want to do was surprisingly much harder. If you had just 24 little hours left… Well, you wouldn’t want to waste it, would you?

I was thinking of all the things I enjoy doing, trying to decide what I enjoyed most, and drew a blank. The weather today has been absolutely gorgeous, which made me think that, boring though it sounds, what I’d most like to do is to sit in the grounds of Glastonbury Abbey, basking in the sun, reading a book. Or maybe that teeny beach on the northern tip of Borneo we found that summer… I wouldn’t want to be talking necessarily, but I’d like for my family and friends to be around as well. What I’d most like is to be sitting to one side, watching them all have fun, knowing I could join in if I wanted to. Yeah. That sounds good to me.

So what how would you choose to spend your last day on Earth? The scenario isn’t that at the end of the 24 hours you are going to die horribly, or a giant asteroid is going to hit, or anything equally nasty. You are just gifted (as is everyone else) with the knowledge that in 24 hours things are going to end. Have a good think, as I am genuinely curious – how are your last hours going to be spent? Major party time? Confessing your sins? Getting married? Getting divorced? Doing that skydive you always promised yourself you would but never got around to? Or just having a normal day?

*1*Now, the last time this question got posed to me was by a counsellor, who was asking me it in an effort to see what career I would like to do. My response then was “er, if I had a day left on earth, I’d be having fun, not thinking about a job!” As a side note, I didn’t go back to this particular lady – I think I lasted about 15 minutes before stalking out of the room in frustration. Silly woman. Back

16 thoughts on “So you’ve got 24 hours left…

  1. That was an interesting read, I’ll give it that. And I’ll probably have more to say when I’m not feeling bitter and ill, but my gut reaction is sceptical – I’m not denying he has points, but…

    If nothing else the author of that is grossly over simplifying the change to agriculturalism and romanticising pre-mesolithic cultures to a degree that verges on the idiotic. For starters there was never a time when people shared resources equitably, be those people palaeolithic or Amerind.

    the Knights Templar… was set upon in the name of European Security


    There was no “Europe” at the time. The Pope had simply finally had enough of them, and his word at the time was law, across the assorted geo-political units in the geographical local that is now known as Europe.

    I could go on, but I won’t, because I don’t want to be mean and spend the entire evening picking holes in the factual basis of that editorial. I applaud the sentiment just not the route he’s taken to get there. (And I have serious doubts as to the whole men subverting women, 13 being female gig).

    (Before I go though, my favourite line? “Americans aren’t stupid… We make reasonable choices based on information provided by media corporations that profit from propaganda.” So stop reading that biased information!)

    Oh, and you didn’t tell us what your perfect day would be 😀

  2. If I had 24hrs left I would go to laser quest with my other half and the kids if it was raining, I would go to the park (one with a slide to watch my youngest) and have a picnic if it was sunny…

    Then I would go home, invites my friends round for a BBQ either indoors our out depending on the weather (I can do indoor BBQ with no consequence if the world is ending right?) and then I would have some fun with beer, Jack Daniels and maybe a few tequila… say cheerio to the world on my site, play with my partner and kids till the 24hrs were up then wait for non impending doom…

    How does that sound? Oh yeah… A Domino’s pizza would have to fit in there somewhere too…

  3. If i had 24 hours left to live, I would spend them with my family. We will go to the beach together and have a good time. I would also make it a point to hang out with my friends for a while. Wow, what a lonesome day would that be still. Actually, I got sad just be writing down this comment. [sob]

  4. Alan, that sounds like a good day. Oh, and yes you can indoor BBQ because you asked so nicely 🙂

    Steven, yours also sounds good, not lonesome at all. And welcome to Bright Meadow 🙂

    Thinking about mine some more, I think I’d try and fit in a trip to the hairdressers for a full wash, cut, and blow-dry. Well, you’ve got to look good for the end of the world, right? And having your hair washed does feel so decadent, and probably more pleasurable than should strictly be possible with all your clothes on in public, with strangers. Yup. That sounds suitably like an experience I’d like to have one last time.

  5. That is a very good question. I would get on a plane with my family and head for Yosemite, California. While on the way to Yosemite from the airport I would take a side trip to a place where I could skydive, after the skydive I would go to an In-N-Out Burger place and have the biggest burger and fries that they serve. When we got to Yosemite I would hike up to Half Dome and spend the rest of the time taking in the awesome views and talking with my family.

  6. Those do look like good burgers… Are they end of the world good? Or is it just because it is the end of the world you no longer have to care about the cholesterol, fat, and salt content?

  7. Yes!!! They are end of the world good AND I would not have to worry about the side effects. It is probably good that I do not have any of these on this side of the US. They are a West Coast (of the US) franchise and I currently reside almost 3000 miles away on the East Coast (of the US).

  8. I would take my best friend and her boyfriend over to the States, visit my fiancee and just have a fun, relaxing day with the 3 of them. 🙂

  9. Thank you for the link, Cas! As to dates, it’s possible to make any day significant: every day is some anniversary of something, so it’s our choice to think positively or negatively.
       I would spend the last 24 hours with family and just having quality time—and think Steven has the right idea.

  10. 13 is a great number. It’s always been lucky for me.

    if you believe in numerology then the only significant numbers are 1-9. All other numbers should be added together until they become a number between 1 and 9 (i.e. 138 = 3 [1+3+8 = 12, 1+2 = 3]) therefore it’s not 13 that’s unlucky it’s 4.

  11. My pleasure Jack.

    I’m getting a distinct “time with family/friends” vibe from my readers here for the whole end of the world gig. Not a single vengeful wish out there – either everyone who reads Bright Meadow is just a wonderful person, or people aren’t telling the whole truth 😉

    You are all wonderful though.

    I can’t think of anything good that has happened specifically on a 4th, but I can’t think of anything bad either, so on the whole I would have to say 4’s always been a good number for me as well.

  12. Cas, I’m nicked. Yes, I do want to go out and avenge. Just kidding!
       Moose, most east Asian cultures dislike fours. In Korea, elevator cars have buttons reading 1, 2, 3, F, 5.

  13. See, I knew my readers were really a bloodthirsty vengeful lot!

    I just remembered something – on the road where I grew up, there is no house ’13’. The numbering goes 11, 12, 14, 15. Apparently the builder was a bit superstitious, or (as it was the late 60’s when the house got built), more than a little high. Really confuses postmen new to the route 😀

  14. Thirteen is considered lucky in Chinese culture, and I live at one. The property, however, is on two streets (it’s a big section), and the “back” of the home is no. 32. For years, earlier owners used ‘32’ for the “front”, for a street that only had 14 houses! Consequently, there were cabbies who did not attend calls for no. 32, because they knew there could not possibly be that many houses on the street. I saw no harm in being at no. 13, and for the last couple of decades, the anomaly has been addressed.

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