Decoys for Desolation (A Parody of Apocalyptic Stories)

“Breaking news: An asteroid is headed towards Earth!”

Every newspaper, talking head pundit, and online news source had that line plastered for all to see regardless of which media they partook in. Like clockwork, the home improvement stores sold out of lumber, nails, hammers, and chains. The supermarkets became desolate because of the increase in food sales.

“Expected date: two weeks out!”

The cycle of paranoia restarted as suburban neighborhoods resembled a hybrid of refugee camps and zombie apocalypse shelters. Interestingly enough, there were a multitude of cardboard signs thrown in the trash that said “The end is nigh.” Boy, did those neurotic hobos feel validated once news broke.

“One week before Armageddon!”

Not a soul peered or walked outside. Businesses were closed and boarded up so much that they made liquor stores in impoverished cities look high-class. The symphony of streetlights hummed their silent chorale for only squirrels or birds to hear. Rumor has it, that some people have congregated underground and founded new gods to worship as that giant rock was earthbound.

“Ragnarok begins tomorrow!”

The silence lingered for a second, only for it to be broken as the frenzied masses froth at anything they saw. Some items that were miraculously left in the stores were subject to a strip mall free-for-all. Baseball bats and gats were brandished as the chaos happened.

“This is the end of days!”

That ominous headline burned into everyone’s consciousness. A looming moon shined during mid-day for half the world to see. The screams of terror filled the earth as the inevitable happened

…And all that really happened involved was the great asteroid burning up into pebbles that rained down. Some windows, cars, and some building facades, and other physical things got dented.

“Surprisingly, there are no casualties.”

Sure, some injuries happened here and there, but nothing life-threatening.

The reaction was priceless. Doomsday cults disbanded and mysteriously everyone got paid big bucks from their insurance companies. It was a record year for “acts of God”.

The end just didn’t feel like being there just yet.

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