The Collapse Of Civilization... Or Not
Looking forward to Y2K

"Some say we'll see Armageddon soon ... I certainly hope we will ..." Tool, Aenema

Sick to death of all of this talk of the millennium? Ready to strangle with piano wire the next cheesy, dull TV prognosticator you see? About to use swift and blinding violence against one of those annoying Tott's champagne LED "millennium clocks" that tick down the seconds like so many tiny bombs wielded by wild-eyed, crazy Arab stereotypes in a bad James Cameron movie?

See also...
... by Steve Robles
... in the Whoa! section
... from August 26, 1999

Not me, dammit. Except for all of the dunderheaded media bullshit ("Are you ready for the millennium yet, Sue?" Chuckle, chuckle), I'm actually a bit giddy about it.

Y2K has the appeal of novelty, and novelty ain't half bad. C'mon now, you know it's gonna be weird putting "00" at the end of abbreviated dates! Maybe my simple mind is easily entertained ... Hell, who am I kidding? There's no maybe about it. I can smoke a half-gram of hash at 10 a.m., turn on Teletubbies and be as happy as Anne Heche in an LPGA locker room.

Plus, there's the oh-so-slight possibility of that most intoxicating drug of all -- chaos. Like all good Sagittarians, I thrive on anomalies, and the way I hear some people talking ("normal" people, not media whores), the hours marking the transition from Dec. 31, 1999 to Jan. 1, 2000 are gonna be like a flashpoint for social boundary disillusionment.

I picture the closing scene of that cinematic gem Conquest Of The Planet Of The Apes, where L.A. is in (badly-composited) flames while the marauding gorillas are whooping it up in the streets, having just vanquished their human overlords. All to the tune of a bad "experimental" score that would have had even John Cage driving ice picks through his eardrums.

That's wishful thinking, I know. Still, all my friends are planning trips to isolated, remote areas, or just hunkering down at home, where they feel they'll be "safe" -- but from what? Meanwhile, my brother's busy building a concrete bunker miles below the earth's crust to protect himself -- but from whom? I have no clue, and none of these going-to-the-Himalayas mothafuckas can provide one. They say it's just a general feeling that "Shit's gonna go down, dude."

Well, I'm ready. And you know what? If it happens, I wanna be at ground fuckin' zero. Every cop in San Francisco has been ordered to pull duty on New Year's, so how the hell are you going to incite the biggest riot mankind has seen since Nicolae Ceausescu was chopped into dog food playing those kinds of odds? You're not, and as Stone Cold Steve Austin sez, "That's the bottom line."

For all my muttering about "self-fulfilling prophecies," I know it's gonna be business as usual on New Year's Eve ­-- a bunch of drunks crashing into each other to celebrate a calendar that's as flawed as the civilization that relies on it. So when all the greasy balls drop at the stroke of midnight, I'll be in the heart of the city, ripped to the tits on some cocktail of hallucinogens and alpha wave accelerators, a bottle of Tott's in one hand and a bong in the other. Woo hoo.

At least that way, if society does collapse like the withered uterus of the Old Lady Who Lived In A Shoe, I'll be in the perfect frame of mind just to watch and giggle. Like Jimi said, "Fall, mountains ... just don't fall on me!"

Dope addict Steve Robles often channels the ghosts of Bukowski and Lester Bangs for "inspiration." His work has appeared in Odyssey and UnReal People.