mayan calendar
mayan calendar By Truthanado (Own work) [Publ

Today is a huge shopping day, as you can tell by the throngs at Walmarts, Sam's, Costco, Macy's, Target and the like. Considering, however, that we have only one year to go, in that the world is supposed to end on Dec. 21, 2012, the end of the Mayan's 5,126-year-long calendar, I wouldn't bother with anything that costs more because it lasts, and also, do take advantage of all those no-interest-until-January-2013 store credit-card deals!

Traditionally, this is the day that I go out and buy my year's day-planner. I've usually opted for the little black Leathersmith one, but I thought, given that it is the end of days and all, maybe I should think a bit about some alternative calendar. And while I'm at it, maybe pick up a few other things, just in case things get rocky next fall.

First the basics. I need a reliable planner, and it is already late to buy one Jan. 1, as most well-planned, day-planner buyers have already bought them in advance of the after-New-Year day-planner shortage that reliably hits every year. But I needed one, nonetheless. After all, even if it is the end of the world, the world must go on, as they say, so I will still have to schedule dinner with my friends and dentist appointments, right up, I suppose, to the very end.

I turned to the Internet, while we still have it. We seem to be going on absolutely oblivious to the impending doom of all and everything, I might add. It is a beautiful, unseasonably warm day here in New York, and blissfully quiet after a night filled with loud, joyous -- well, a bit more delirious than joyous in my neighborhood -- celebration.

I turned a weather ear to the window after midnight but could not discern any wailing or renting of garments, so I guess the guys on the street out there hadn't caught on to the fact that this was their last New Year's Eve celebration ever. It didn't sound like they had already purchased their 2012 day-planners, either. Anyway, they sounded more like an iPhone crowd.

Hard to blame them for ignoring the impending day-planner shortage. After a tough 2011, either you're looking at just one more year of grinding underemployment, or no employment. Either way, they looked like the part of the 99 percent for whom the Mayan prophecy would mean that things are actually looking up.

After all, in a strictly economic sense, come Jan. 1, 2013, if everyone is gone that means that unemployment rates have dropped to zero, a year-over-year decrease of infinity. Of course, somehow, Obama will be blamed for the fact that the GDP is also zero, but on the other hand, trade deficits are zero, too, so he should get credit for that.

I can't say either way about the national debt. You'd really need an accountant to tell you if debts, theoretically, continue on the books after the de-existence of everything or not. Any of you accountants out there, feel free to comment on this below, as I can use all the help I can get on that one. My accountant, sensibly, is taking the first week of the year off. Accountants can afford to do that, thanks to our undecipherable tax code, which is also known as the Full-Employment-For-Accountants Act.

But first things first: Getting that Mayan day-planner. Here's a nice one, although there is no mention of the end of days. I wonder if it has a few pages at the end, like planners often do, for then next for months of the following year? I always find that handy, because, by the time I go looking for my favorite day-planner, they are frequently sold out and I have to go from store to store until I find one in some unlikely spot, like a deli that just happens to sell planners. And also, people want to make plans in December for January, and in some especially farsighted cases for February, too.

Now here's one that is more to my taste. It bills itself as the only planner that you'll ever have to buy, which sounds like a deal that is too good to be true. But then again, either I will be reassured that this guarantee is ironclad and feel very positively about this company, after the end of time; or I will be happily relieved that in fact, I need to go, once again, shopping on Jan. 1, 2013, for another day-planner. Although I won't be buying one from them again.

I decided on a day-planner this year because I asked Siri what was on my schedule for Dec. 21, 2013. You don't have anything on your calendar, she told me.

I figured that meant that either Apple knew something I didn't, or they had jumped the shark and were late to the party, finally. Anyway phones will go as soon as the electric grid gives out over our next -- and and presumably last -- summer, and with it poor Siri. And, as we approach the end of days, I want to be able to stay on schedule right to the end.

Besides, if my iPhone had a decent planner, it would have all the major holidays in it already.

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