It’s often been said that the world would end not with a bang, but with a whimper. But the smart money’s always said, the world would end neither with a bang nor a whimper, but with an “Oops.”
As in “Oops, I dropped that petrie dish of the black plague.”
Or “Oops, I set my Diet Coke can on the nuclear button.”
Or “Oops, I had sex with that monkey.”
However, in this case, in this apocalypse, the dumbest apocalypse, started with the phrase….Wait a minute, let’s not, so to speak, give away the goat just yet, we’ll get to the ‘Oops’ soon enough.
Let’s start with the good news first.
Global warming and world pollution has been eradicated. I know in your timeline, most people now wear masks to mitigate the thick, black air. Even your President Eric Trump has to wear an oxygen mask. The scientists say life will be uninhabitable on your earth by 2050.
But, here, in this timeline, three terms of Bernie Sanders including the last year when he was in an iron lung meant America took the green new deal seriously. Solar energy, hydropower, electric cars, even some nuclear. But the gas and oil companies still had a grip on most methods of energy consumption. Until Greta Thunberg came along. You may remember Greta Thunberg as the Swedish kid and enviromentalist who was murdered in her teens by the Trump Troopers in 2027. But in this timeline, no Trump Troopers and she grew up to become a Bio-Engineer and create the greatest energy producer since the sun, The Bugaloo. Of course, Greta Thunberg was murdered by Elon Musk in 2038. Some say it was a car accident, but, c’mon how did Musk end up with the bugaloo AND the Omnis patent?
Oh, what’s the Bugaloo? The bugaloo is an insect about the size of a dime, six legs, hard shell, has a lifespan of about two weeks, reproduces twice within it’s lifetime, smart for a bug and excretes an oxygen-rich air, eats anything non-living that’s coated a special plastic called omnis and can be burned with no pollution and used as energy.
Here’s how it works, the lightly viscous plastic omnis is sprayed onto any non living item or plant, anything—wood pulp, other plastics, grass, rocks, any density of metal up to steel and the bugaloo eats it within minutes and secrets a non-toxic oxygen-rich gas that can be burned for fuel. The burned fuel leaves no residue or pollution.
The bugaloos are placed in a generally steel or gold, even hard rock container with two chambers, one to hold the bugaloos and another to collect the gas to burn to create energy. They also eat dead flesh activated by the omnis, so they cannibalize themselves with no after waste or residue. Living creatures can eat the harmless Omnis, but their excretions are encased in Omnis. You can literally drive your own car with your own poop. Or throw a half eaten sandwich or whatever into your tank, just squirt it with omnis and you’ve filled up your tank and are good to drive for fifty miles or whatever. The main property on the plastic omnis is its ability to encase non-living matter. Control the bugaloos input and omnis and everything works perfectly.
So the bugaloos were cheap, but the omnis was expensive, this is where Elon Musk made his money. However, the bugaloos were used to clean the environment extremely effectively. That garbage island the size of Texas floating in the Pacific, gone in a day, with no power costs and enough oxygen to refill the ozone hole. Overnight, everyone had energy. The more dense metals shot up in price and the Sanders administration taxed the rich to the point that the government became the primary omnis producer which was made by breaking down and reformulating existing plastics.
Within five years all pollution was gone, literally eaten for fuel. And that’s the where the story happily ends. People got rich, but a societal ill was conquered. America.
Oh, yea, the apocalypse. As with many a tragedy, it begins with love, or so the story goes.
Jack loved Jill. Jill hadn’t the time of day for Jack. They were scientists for the government. Jill was obsessed with making a cheaper omnis, one that the rich couldn’t control, as Jill was a Sander’s socialist, working for a better life for all the people. Jack just wanted to impress. So he had the idea, make a complimentary bug that excretes omnis. After a few years, he succeeded wildly, The Omnibug, a quarter sized, eight-legged bug, with a small horn and soft shell that excreted omnis after eating. And here’s the best part, the omnibug only ate water. Everyone has access to water. So now energy production was just another step. Add the omnibug into the chain of production. And he owned omnibus the bug patent. While there was still some fiddling to be done, mostly to engineer a short lifespan for the omnibug so that it didn’t consume too much water and to control just how much omnis the bug produces to keep the energy production in a state of some kind of equilibrium. Success, as always, seemed just around the corner.
Here comes the Oops.
Since the bugaloos introduction, various religious groups formed to worship the bug. One particularly violent one, The Second Coming of Loo, found out about Jack’s work and wanted to stop it. SO, as Jack was flying across the Atlantic to premiere his new bug in Paris, his plane was hijacked by the Loo-ites and forced into the ocean. And, as the story goes, Jack’s last words were, “Oops, these bugs shouldn’t be let loose in the ocean.”
That’s when the shit hit the fan or more accurately, the bug hit the water. With nothing but water in every direction, three bugs multiplied into hundreds in minutes, millions in a half hour and trillions within the hour. They grew so quickly and with so many generations they mutated. At first, the Omnibug just secreted omnis, but with the water overload, the omnibug secreted both omnis and water. The omnis encased everything non-living in the ocean including all plant life. Soon the omnis met up with the bugaloos. And simply put, the bugaloos ate all the non-living specimens in the Atlantic ocean. This took a week. By that time, the omnibug and omnis was in water everywhere. The omnis was light enough to be evaporated into clouds and rained back down, encasing rocks and streets and buildings and, um everything rain touches.
But here’s the funny thing. Some things are a mix of the living and the non-living. For example, you. While you’re not one solid thing, but billions of living microbes formed into a you shape. Also you’re dead things like hair and dandruff and dead skin and eyelashes. After the bugaloos were done, only the eyelash mites remained on your living eyes and last layer of skin. Nobody had clothes, the landrypocalpse. Every non-living thing down to the hard rock layer of the earth was stripped away. The bugs stopped at lava and ate all the corpses. Plus those who were able to survive, hide, were perpetually high from the oxygen-rich atmosphere. As I write this, we’ll all be dead in a few hours.
So, I say to you, in the darker timeline, enjoy your last few years and as you wheeze and choke your way to a slow death and while you may never see another clear day, at least you weren’t succumbed by bugs, hairless and insane.