I Wanted the Apocalypse Because I'm An Asshole

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Editorial and Opinion  |  House: Booksie Classic

Exactly what it says on the tin.

One of my earliest fantasies of apocalypse didn't have zombies, disasters, or even people.

In my apocalypse, other people were just gone. They were suddenly swept away from this mortal coil.

But all their stuff was still here.

And that was all younger me needed. I imagined sleeping in mansions that sat completely still, curiously clean and lacking even dust. I scavenged cabinets, plucked from and tended gardens and fields, there were even animals left and so I tried farming. The libraries were shut, but I easily broke in and went through their shelves. From every direction there were no barriers or closing times, unless you counted one for the rest of humankind's time on this earth.

For some it might have been a fun idea to play with for a little while. Someone else might have been keen on having company over, maybe even a group of scrappy friends to rebuild society, or a sort of society. Something.

For more than a decade, whenever I thought of a world ended, the best case scenario I could think of was that everyone else was dead and I was the only one left

Past the age of twenty I started puzzling over this. Why couldn’t I imagine any sort of world where I could be happy besides one where I never had to see or deal with another human ever again? A single person I'd like to have along for the 'adventure'?

 Are there really no more likable people in this world?

One part of my brain scolded me, "That's as unrealistic as if you thought everyone was inherently good. You're dangerously close to sounding like the edgelords you hate."

But this was still what I pictured even when I managed to have friends. Did this mean I didn't really think of them as such? Or was I just that stuck on the image?

Why was a world empty and at a complete stop just the ideal?

Then it suddenly hit me.

It's because I am an asshole who didn't want to try that hard.

If the world was already over, then there was no effort to be made in fixing it. 

If everyone else was dead or in hiding, it meant I would never have to answer to them, rely on them for anything, maybe the social paralysis that drove me to drink would be blown away like humanity itself. Can't have social anxiety without the possibility of social interaction. Job? No more soul-crushing labor someone else would see the most benefit from. No more going outside and immediately feeling your self under surveillance and the millions of expectations of complete strangers, or having to wrestle with the thought that a single one might decide to ruin your day just because they could. 

And since the world in all it's old and broken ways was done with, shit, maybe I could even rebuild one or part of it into one that fit me better.

But it's delusion. The world's broken because people stand by and watch it break the way they watch a car accident even as the gas starts smoking mere feet from their face. They waste precious time debating themselves over what the smoke is, what's causing it, and what they can do about it. It may not be the perfect analogy, but the result is the same. The issue is there and on the other side is that stupid, stupid vacant face. 

And a person with that deer-in-the-headlights or willfully apathetic reaction is not any more likely to get anywhere in a post-apocalypse. 

What is there can be done about it?

It's not to keep standing there and fucking staring at it and hoping for rapture instead, that's for sure.

Submitted: April 03, 2021

© Copyright 2022 SimonClemens. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:


Serge Wlodarski

Well said.

Sat, April 3rd, 2021 10:07am


Thank you, Serge.

Sat, April 3rd, 2021 9:25pm

Bert Broomberg

A very interesting read. I enjoyed it a lot.

Sat, April 3rd, 2021 12:54pm


Thank you.

Sat, April 3rd, 2021 3:16pm


Certainly some food for thought, Simon. Especially for a misfit introvert like me.

Sat, April 3rd, 2021 6:28pm


Thank you, hullabaloo. We should all think on it now and then.

Sat, April 3rd, 2021 3:15pm

LE. Berry

Your title had me smiling before I read the piece. Notions of a better world which you don't have to work for. does seem to be a continuing condition humanity suffers from. Enjoyable read

Wed, April 14th, 2021 6:31pm


I hope this issue of the comments not showing on the counter gets fixed soon.
It's never stopped being human nature to want a lot of something in exchange for a lot less. The good version of that makes efficiency and the opposite...well, you know.

Thank you for reading, LE.

Sat, April 17th, 2021 1:10am

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