The year 2012 is upon us!  Destruction is nigh!  Doom!  Armageddon!  Wrath of God!  Cats and dogs living together!  Mass hysteria!

I, for one, am not ready to start stocking my bunker just yet.  We’ve been through this before, you know.  Y2K.  Hale-Bopp.  That Harold Camping guy back in May and then again in October.  The Spice Girls breaking up.  We’ve endured all manner of doom.  We even saw Janet Jackson’s nipple on live television and somehow the world kept turning!

     I will continue my writing long after the Mayan Calendar finishes its doomsday countdown.  You will continue to read my books, uninterrupted by earthquakes, geomagnetic reversals or zombies.  The earth will spin merrily away, undisturbed by Nibiru or Planet X or Nemesis or Krypton or whatever the hell is supposed to be lurking out there.
     There will be no fire and brimstone, no comet of death, no ice age, no solar disaster, no horsemen of the apocalypse.  I can tell you how the world will end.  I’ve known it for years.  And it won’t be pretty.  Pray tell, you say?  How will the world end, you ask?  What eventual doom awaits us all?  I warn you, it’s not for the squeamish.  But if you’re bold enough to handle the truth, I will tell you…
     The world will end by DE-EVOLUTION.
     That’s right.  De-evolution.  (Or “devolution” if you want to be technical.)  Just look around you.  Aren’t there considerably more stupid people in the world today than there were a hundred years ago?  Do you watch the news?  Do you see the people you work with?  Have you ever worked with customers in retail?  Haven’t you noticed that something is very much amiss in the gene pool?
     Oh, sure, it’s not as action-packed as the sky falling down around us.  It’s no glorious, fire-belching super volcano.  It wouldn’t make a very exciting movie.  After all, it’s simply not going to happen all at once.  It’s going to take a long, long time.  But mark my words:  when there’re no more jobs in telemarketing, the incompetent will walk the earth!
     It’s our own fault, really.  We’ve created such a safe and comfortable society.  We have seatbelt and helmet laws.  We have workplace safety regulations.  We have redundant procedures on everything that could possibly cause anyone harm.  It’s harder and harder these days for evolution to take its natural course and kill off all the stupid people.  It’s supposed to be survival of the fittest, isn’t it?  That’s how evolution works.  The more suited for survival the individual is, the better he fares, the longer he lives, the more offspring he sires, the more he contributes to the evolution of the species.  The stupid animals are supposed to get eaten.
     Perhaps this is the price of climbing to the top of the food chain.  Perhaps this is nature’s way of limiting the term of office for the apex predator.  It makes sense, I suppose.  And we probably have it coming for knocking off those dodos…
     Yes, it’s going to get quite ugly in the next few centuries.  But this certainly won’t be our final year.
     …unless, of course, the stupid people have already found the warheads…