You can accept it, reject it, or take the whole thing with a grain of salt, but it’s still hard to believe that we’re nearly four months away from the Mayans’ infamous 2012 Apocalypse come this December; it seems like only yesterday it was the topic of innumerable discussions and the comedic wellspring for so many, many single-panel comic artists. And as is standard fashion for any end-of-the-world scenario, you can bet that — according to all those apocalypse documentaries on History Channel and National Geographic at least — the sophistication of modern society will devolve into mass hysteria and a survival-of-the-fittest mentality out of fear and desperation. But there is one group that, although for years they’ve been the target of derision and humiliation, will stand tall and utilize their vast knowledge of pop culture to lead mankind into a new frontier: the lowly nerd (or geek, whichever handle you prefer).
Our valiant and selfless decision to remain isolated from society’s distractions in order to immerse ourselves in movies, video games and comic books in preparation for the oncoming apocalypse will be the key to the world’s survival! But that’s not to say there isn’t something for us in a post-apocalyptic landscape. There are plenty of opportunities to reap its rewards and make our vicarious daydreams something more. Here’s seven reasons why nerds should embrace — not run away from — the 2012 Apocalypse!
7) Unattended Comic Book Stores
While everyone else is running around looting the ruins of supermarkets and drug stores for necessary supplies, you can count on nerds forsaking the need for vital necessities and flocking to the nearest comic book store to raid it (we kind of do the same right now). Being a nerd is a financially taxing lifestyle, what with so many wonderful collectibles to be had and our extremely tight budgets. But with the decline of local law enforcement and the need to maintain a store now nonexistent, that $500 Galactus statue can be yours! Will it sate those painful hunger pangs? No, but you really did need it for what remains of your collection. Word of warning: other nerds will have the same idea, so get ready to fight like bickering Jawas over that mint copy of Amazing Fantasy #15.
6) Potential Zombie Outbreak
Laboratories manufacturing viruses that can turn entire cities into hordes of shuffling, voracious zombies? Hogwash… or so everyone wants you to think. With every major cataclysm you can be certain there’s going to be an earthquake or two. And what will that earthquake do? It’s going to shake some buildings to the core — particularly that secret and remote lab cultivating said zombie virus. And what’s going to happen? The violent tremors will cause a vial of the stuff to tip over and, somehow, get into the water supply. Well, you can connect the dots from here. But with repeated viewings of hundreds of zombie flicks under our collective belts, and taking page after page of notes, we can at last say “we got this” with the utmost confidence.
5) A Revival of Sorcery (According to Thundarr: The Barbarian)
Okay, the folks at Hanna-Barbera were slightly off in their doomsday prophecy; Thundarr the Barbarian said that the world would end in 1994. True, it was roughly 18 years off the mark, and eerily prophetic of Earth’s possible collision with the planetary object Nibiru in December, but the outcome will be the same: worldwide devastation. Any fan of the show knows that out of the ashes of civilization comes a revival of the arcane arts, used by a multitude of evil wizards to menace Thundarr and his crew. But remember, us nerds are here to protect the people with the arcane arts, not subjugate them. Granted, it’s going to be thousands of years before this happens, but now you’ve got enough time to work on your sorcerer’s robe and get a jump on deciphering ancient texts. You’ll shooting fire from your hands before anyone else.
4) Driving Vehicles Made of Junk
If given the choice of what you’re going to ride around the wasteland in, what would you rather have: a junked soccer mom van or a school bus with a spiked battering ram on the front and a mounted machine gun on top? If you chose the latter, then you’ve been watching way too much Mad Max — and that’s a good thing! In an inhospitable and ruthless environment, you want something that covers everything from transportation, fire power and — above all — badass style. Basically, the definition of practical goes from good mileage to being able to take down a a gang of evil bikers while going cross-country searching for fuel. And the best part of all this? No one’s going to be asking for your license… because they didn’t survive!
3) Nerds Will Be Hailed As Survivalists
As was stated previously, we’ll learn everything we need to know about surviving (and leading others) in a hostile post-apocalyptic environment through the various forms of media that we indulge in. From comics to movies and everything in between, the heroes and heroines that we admired were actually teaching us invaluable nuggets of survivalist knowledge, such as weapon and hunting skills — like the ones we picked up in Skyrim and World of Warcraft — and the avoidance of common and fatal mistakes that ensure one will live to see tomorrow. John Q. Public scoffs at us for wasting our time with such frivolous activities, but we’ll see who’s laughing when our Harvest Moon-inspired agricultural prowess yields a field of crops in piss-poor conditions — that can feed an entire frigging village for months.
2) A Need for Masked Vigilantism
You didn’t actually believe there would be some shred of law enforcement or the National Guard to keep the peace in a post-apocalyptic landscape? With so few supplies and so many people staving off their moral inhibitions to obtain them, crime is going to be a common fixture of everyday life. And this isn’t even including the aforementioned zombies, roving gangs of highway thugs, and once benevolent nerds abusing sorcery for their own personal gain. Once frowned upon, there’s going to be an extremely high demand for individuals brave enough to stand in the face of these transgressors and do so while donning elaborate outfits to conceal their identities. Yes, masked vigilantism will become the de facto method of dealing with an unruly criminal element, with the public now worshipping grown men and women dressed in garish, ill-fitting costumes rather than ridicule them for poor life choices. Just try to be very original with your costumed alter ego, because the last thing you want is answering a distress call and running to the scene with five other people dressed in beat-up Captain America costumes.
1) We (Might) See Quetzalcoatl
Even if there is a 2012 Apocalypse, it’s highly doubtful that the human race will witness Quetzalcoatl returning to the earthly plane once again; the end of modern civilization will most likely meet its fate at the hands of something more scientifically plausible. Still, if he, by some divine miracle, does descend upon Earth, you can die with the satisfaction that you saw a giant feathered serpent come flying through the clouds and turn into a man with a crazy headdress before his feet even touched the ground. Trust me, it will make for an awesome story to tell when you’re sitting at a bar in Heaven with Freddie Mercury and Theodore Roosevelt.