Elder-Friendly Stores

Memory Lapse at the End of the World

category_bug_journal2.gif For nearly 50 years, five days each week, I rose from bed, showered, dressed and headed off to work.

In the years since I retired, I have treated workdays no differently except I commute only 15 or 20 feet from my bedroom to the desk to turn out Time Goes By for the next day. If you count school, I've kept this schedule for 65 years and so tuned am I to it, you could wake me from a sound sleep and I'd tell you which day of the week it is.

Until yesterday, Thursday.

Following this lifelong routine, I sat down at the laptop and spent most of the day sorting, readying and writing items for Saturday's Interesting Stuff post and prepping Peter Tibbles' Elder Music for Sunday. There were the usual interruptions for some news reading, email, stretches of idle time during the first really gorgeous day of spring, cat play sessions, a phone call or two and a short shopping trip.

One by one, I checked off the items on my to-do list. That would be the one with the word “Thursday” clearly penned at the top. At about 4PM, I noted that I had an hour-and-a-half until I was due to meet my brother for dinner at the sushi joint.

Then I did a classic double-take. Meet my brother?! That means it can't be Friday because he always travels to Astoria that evening. Followed by:

Oh, dear. All day you thought it was Friday and now it's 4PM on Thursday, you idiot, and you have nothing for Friday's TGB. How did this happen? Damn.

Hence, this non-post I'm scrambling to finish before leaving the house for dinner.

True to every elder's worst nightmare, there was a frisson of worry that this lapse is an early sign of Alzheimer's. I don't recall that I've ever done it before although once, many years ago, I dressed and went to work on Sunday and wondered for an hour why no one else was there.

I decided it's probably not Alzheimer's or, if it is, there's not much I can do about it. So here is the one item of possible interest I can offer you in the workday left to me:

Tomorrow, 21 May, is judgment day. The rapture. The beginning of the end times. Or something like that.

At least, that's what an 89-year-old California preacher named Harold Camping says who also predicts the end of the world will arrive on 21 October. According to Wikipedia,

”Followers of Camping claim that around 200 million people (approximately 3% of the world's population) will be raptured. As for the remainder of the human population, Camping himself believes in annihilationism, which is the view that those who are not saved will simply cease to be conscious rather than spend eternity in Hell.”

I haven't looked into this beyond a couple of news stories and Wikipedia, so I don't know if only Christians will be saved or if some other religionists and atheists are to be included too.

Anyway, you've been warned. I'll see you back here tomorrow. Or not. For now, I'm off to dinner - my last one?

Oh, dear. No Elder Story today. The file is empty.


I saw a poster a few days ago that the "end of the world" would be on May 22 !!! Actually this post gave us a wonderful glimpse into your day, and ranks up with your most interesting writings! I have forgotten the day many times, when I am not working to a serious schedule.

EVERYONE is saved unless you don't want to be. And the don't-want-to-be part happens (by your actions) before you die. But no one knows when that end time will happen. Even Jesus didn't know!!

Re: forgetting. This quote from a recent newspaper article:"Moments of absent-mindedness such as losing your keys could be the result of tiny parts of the brain taking 'naps' to recharge." U. of Wisconsin Study

I wear a watch that tells me the day, date and time. Of course, I have to look at it.

If it's only the believing Christians who are being raptured "up"-I'm more than happy to stay!

My mother awoke from a nap at 6 pm a couple days ago, thinking it was morning--got up checked her BP, took her pills, ate breakfast, and wondered what kind of weather phenomenon was causing it to get dark in the a.m. She checked the TV to see if there was anything about it--and gradually realized it was 10 pm and not 10 am! First time this has happened, but at 90 I guess she's entitled! She had also called me asking me to bring over the newspaper as it wasn't in the drive and called the paper also....thus that day she wound up with three newspapers for the same day!

As I mentioned to Ronni, it’s not clear if it’s Australia’s 21st , Europe’s 21st or America’s 21st. If it’s yours (America’s), we get an extra day here in Oz. I wonder what happens when the rapturees happen to be hanging around on the 22nd. Do they say, “Oh my goodness, our calculations were wrong, we forgot the fiddle faddle foodle factor. It’s really going to happen on the 12th of Never” (to bring in a musical reference). My reply would be that the rapture actually happened and you weren’t good enough. I wouldn’t say that to their face as they are often violent. See you all on the 22nd (unless we’re all been good and…..).

Thanks for the am chuckle! Dee

I've been able to do the-- what day is it thing-- for years because of not being on a regular work schedule. Livestock doesn't take a week-end break and so it never really helps you keep track of the days. They are all the same to a sheep and if you are around them or cattle all the time, you get into cycles but not of the sort you have with work schedules other places.

On the Rapture, I keep wondering what he'll say when it doesn't happen. Maybe it's all a gimmick for something else. The sad part is the gullible people who do believe it and one man took all his savings to pay for notices in NY. Where that church has so much money, they should have done that themselves but they'd rather bilk others for it, I guess. Rather sad. I guess we'll get another like it come December 2012 although I am not sure any new agers, who might actually believe it ends that day, would give away anything over it. Christians have in past generations though. Actually that's very sad. I'd feel worse for them except they are the type easily duped into voting a certain way against their own interests but because someone told them god wants them to do it...

One one level it is a shame that our lives revolved around the work schedule to earn the pay check to pay the rent etc.
Since retiring, most days I am not aware what day it is. As a new retiree, at least I knew when it was a weekend. No longer. It just isn't in my consciousness now. What freedom.

Well, I'm hoping the Rapture happens. It would be a bigger news event than Bin Ladin's death. And I love an interesting news day.

In fact, reports of the Rapture would likely make me stop avoiding my favorite newspaper and pay the new $15/month fee. I would surely be here to read all the articles.

Here it is, the 21st in Oz and nothing has happe

Oh gosh, I'm always forgetting what day of the week it is, but then I've been doing that at least since my twenties!

I like your post as I enjoy personal 'wanderings'.

Maybe it's an Aries thing. I kept thinking it was Friday all day yesterday, too!

Oh dear - see Peter Tibbles' comment - third up from here. We may have lost him to the rapture.

For over a year, my wonderful aide came on Fridays, then switched to Thursdays.Ever since, when Friday comes I often think it's Saturday, and when I realize it isn't, I feel like I've been given an extra day! I like it that way! Friday is now my designated "play day."

Yesterday felt like Friday, although I knew it was Thursday.

I chalk it up to no longer being in the workforce, where each day was clearly demarcated.

Regarding the rapture, if the world ends tomorrow (or maybe it's some days later; I can't recall the schedule), what happens to the people up at the International Space Station?

I'm guessing they'll be okay. They're already enraptured by the sight of our gorgeous blue planet floating in the blackness of space.

Ronni, just now I read your comment about Peter's comment. Too funny!

If he's been raptured, I sure am going to miss his column, but I'll rejoice that he's in heaven (or wherever).

Imagine the music he'll write about from "up there." (Maybe he's on the ISS.)

Then again, if we're lucky, maybe God (or whoever) will think twice and toss him back to Earth.

Either way, happy landing, Peter!

All pet lovers should be delighted to know an organization of atheists exists to take care of your favorite animal should you be elevated to heaven during the rapture.

You can learn about it by googling "Eternal Earth-Bound Pets." For a small fee, the group promises to rescue and care for any animals left behind by the saved.

I'm chairing a discussion group tomorrow at a church. It should be interesting to note of any of the members magically disappear during our two-hour session, which convenes shortly after the Rapture begins.

Rapturous applause for this post and all these marvellous comments.

Oh gabby geezer, maybe the "Earth Bound.." are just gathering up food. Bad celia, one way or another I'll still be here, if any of you want to give me your goodies and money. No returns.

I worked all my lifelong days, too. But since I retired, I often have to really THINK... what day is it today?? Love it! And I'm not in the least worried about it. You shouldn't be, either! :)

Hey, if those gullible people who believe in the Rapture are giving away their money, I could use some.

Ever since my first trip to Europe at age 22 I have had that "Lost Day" problem when I travel. I even got to the airport in Rome a day late once although it's usually been discovered before anything to dire. I chalked it up to being out of my element and not having the usual routine but it has happened at home too, though not very often. I don't think of it as possible Alzheimer's I just think too much is going on. Anyway what we call any particular time period is arbitrary, isn't it?

Darlene, I wrote a blog post last week offering to help the wealthy save themselves by sending their spare cash to me.

So far I've received one check for $1.37 and a bill from some smarty for $40,010.

I just got the 'word'. Nothing's going to happen tomorrow - they got it all wrong.

But . . . sent $3 and a response to me and I'll you what He told me!

Jokingly yours.

Does it really make any difference whether it's Thursday or Friday?
OK, 10PM or 10 AM maybe but not if it's summer at either pole. May or June take your pick, it's all the same, (unless maybe it your birthday.)

The String Theorists would suggest that on planets that don't have a sun, there's probably no time either.
In the end, it's all completely arbitrary so I say it's noon on Sunday , July 4th. God bless the USA!

My daughter wisely planned a looting party for "After the Rapture". All those heavenly beings are not going to be around for their earthly stuff anymore so we can just help ourselves.


I just read a story on MSN about some kids whose parents are going around preparing for the rapture, and they have acknowledged that the kids won't be coming along. Family values,indeed.
It's my understanding that it will only include protestants....no Catholics, and that there is some theory that the pope is the antichrist. I will hazard a guess that these folks also expect the rapture to only include middle class white folks, Americans preferably. A friend posted a note from someone who planned to place a set of shoes, socks, pants, shirt on his front lawn tonight to make it look to the "rapturous" neighbors that he was taken and not them!

Well, the Rapture is one quick way to reduce the population in this poor old over-populated world.

I, personally, wouldn't want to be included in the "holier than thou" types' events, thank you.

About losing a day, I'm so glad I'm not the only one who does that. I find that very comforting.

When I was merely in my late 30s I showed up at a party a week early. The two women who would be hosts the next week answered the door in their pajamas and just looked at me standing on the porch holding my brown paper bag with two beers in it. We all realized what had happened at the same moment. I took off running but they caught me and made me come inside and drink one of my beers before I was allowed to leave. Of course this was a main topic of conversation when I showed up at the subsequent party, oh ha ha ha.

OK, so I knew it was Thursday yesterday. I had to do a work thingy in the morning in the pouring rain. I got back to my work building and waved my key card in front of the elevator button and was irked when the car didn't come. Dried off the key card but still no elevator. Then I PUSHED the button .... I hope my brain was just recharging so I'd be ready to fight the antichrist during the millennium-long battle between good and evil I'm told will follow the Rapture.

I’m back. The big fellah with the beard didn’t like the look of me and threw me back.

Glad you're back,safe and sound,Peter.See you Sunday!

I won't be flying anywhere tomorrow because, with my luck, the pilot would be raptured!

Ronni, I open Elderstorytelling this AM to read the new story. To my surprise, my story was still there. I tried to come up with reasons. Finally I decided that it was being run again because it was just so wonderful. My ego driven self certainly didn't think that maybe you had just mixed up the days! Oh it a delight to know that others also get confused. I travel in good company.

One good thing about having to take pills every morning: " S M T W T F S " Kinda helps keep the days straight, except when you forget and get off by a day.

This post has been fun. Glad you got addled, Ronni.

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