Is it the end of the world, or just another day?

Touted as "the last calendar you'll ever need" by useless crap clearinghouse Archie McPhee, the Doomsday Calendar bids good-bye to me every day. As I head out the door, I turn the dials, one for the date (two on the tenth, twentieth, thirtieth, and first of the month), one for the day, another for the month. Through the rest of the day, my mind is haunted by paranoid suspicions in Spanish: es el fin del mundo, o apenas otro día?

The traditional Mexican artwork features village people running from an incoming comet (who looks like a redskinned Jerry Lewis, sans glasses). Some of them are on fire. It appears that they are fleeing into the gates of hell, into the gaping maw of the devil's realm. The Prince of Darkness sits on a throne between the words apenas and otro.

Why does this brighten my day? It should fill my head with horrible visions of the ever approaching apocalypse. Perhaps it is one of those mundane tasks that keep us from going around the bend: change the date, look oblivion in the eyes, get on with my day.

And at the end of the day, coming home, I can tell myself that it was just another day, that the other option did not happen, that we are still here and life is still sane.

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