Tuesday, October 31, 2006

On Armageddon

On Armageddon

Dragged out of bed at the unearthly hour of 11.30am by the doorbell. On a Saturday. Have people no heart?

It is a man in a suit, and quite possibly the rubber sheets I ordered from the Kleeneze catalogue, arriving just in time for the Hallowe'en rituals. I am wrong. Still, it always pays to have your chainsaw in tip-top nick, does it not, for you never know who might arrive at your door.

"Did you know the end of the world is nigh?" asked the Jehovah's Witness.

Oh God.

"Oh God", and: "How, exactly?"

Those of you who have bought my book - and you all have, haven't you? - would be aware of our regular Jehovah's Witness, Brother Nathanial and his steady descent into the sweary fires of Hell. This was not Brother Nathanial. It was a new Witness, Brother Les, who looked and dressed like a game show host, with a star prize of eternal salvation.

He gave me a leaflet.

A leaflet which was, if you ask me, deliberately cagey about times and dates for the end of the world, which doesn't help those of us with a busy diary (Tuesday: Parents' evening. Wednesday: Go to Turkey. Thursday: End of World, remember duty frees). It did, however, have a nice picture of a large-breasted Harlot in a tight, red jumpsuit, who resembled Kate O'Mara in her 80s prime riding a seven-headed, ten horned beast, as drawn by Napoleon Dynamite.

A bit like this, really. Use your imagination:

K. O'Mara, Liger, The End of the World

As I slammed the door in his face in the traditional stylee, I realised there was still much, much more I needed to ask, but Brother Les was already long gone, getting a good, stiff talking to from the churchy family over the road.

For example: if the end of the world really is nigh, should I really be bothered with re-negotiating my mortgage? After all, with the banking system shattered by thermo-nuclear warfare in the final battle with the Anti-Christ, who's going to give a microwaved shit about whether I'm paying the Bank of England base rate plus 0.39 per cent, or not? Is Armageddon a valid excuse for dodging a few household bills? I had my cavity wall insulation done last week - will it withstand the heat of the impending inferno?

And, if we're looking for answers to all the big end-of-the-world questions - could Brother Les fix me up with the beast-riding harlot? She's my kind of lady.

Gobble: As I indicated above, I shall be in Turkey for the rest of the week doing journalisty things. Misty's in charge. God - have I not learned my lesson already?

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