04 Inkedasteroid LIThis column is written about a week before the election so I have no idea who won. Or if a winner or martial law has been declared. Or if all is sweetness and light and each side has graciously accepted that the other side has won. Who knows? The Shadow knows but he ain’t telling. Perhaps this column will never appear in print. Not because Up & Coming’s Publisher Bill Bowman will actually read it before it appears. Bill and I sit on very different sides of the political fence so it is a minor miracle this column has lasted all these many years. However, I digress.

The reason this column may never soil the pages of world literature is because there is the possibility that the asteroid named 2018 VPI will hit the Earth on 2 November 2020. This is the day before the election thus wiping out the Earth and all its inhabitants including printing presses. This may or may not be an improvement over our current situation. Let us ponder 2018 VPI which is cruising towards us at 25,000 miles per hour. NASA found 2018 VPI in 2018 with its Near-Earth Object Observations Program. Science guys including TV star Neil deGrasse Tyson tell us that 2018 VPI is fairly small, about the size of an olive green 1960’s refrigerator. They tell us 2018 VPI has less than a half per cent chance of hitting us. Supposedly even if it did hit us, it wouldn’t destroy the Earth. However, let us remember that this is the Year of Our Lord 2020 when anything can and will happen. The experts also told us that the Titanic was unsinkable. The experts told us Hillary was a sure thing to be elected President in 2016. So, there is that.

The odds are that 2018 VPI probably won’t destroy the Earth. But what if 2018 VPI is just a warning shot from some alien race or even a cranky Greek God? We have all seen enough movies about aliens deciding to destroy the Earth to know that somebody out there might not like us. If the Klingons have been picking up the political ads from the last six months, they probably hate us by now. If the Klingons don’t get us, maybe Thor is angry at us. Thor may have upgraded his weapons from thunder bolts to asteroids. It is no accident that HBO is running the Bruce Willis magnum opus “Armageddon” right now. Does HBO know something we don’t? Are the cable wizards trying to warn us of pending disaster? Has anyone seen Bruce Willis lately? We may need him in the next reel to save the Earth for real.

Right now you are probably asking yourself, “Self, how big does an asteroid or a comet need to be to destroy the Earth?” You could ask the dinosaurs this question because they were around 65 million years ago when an asteroid about 6 to 9 miles wide smacked the Earth. Unfortunately, none of the dinosaurs survived the impact. Bruce Willis wasn’t born until about 65 million years later so he couldn’t save the Earth. Without Bruce Willis the best the dinosaurs could hope for was to be impressive fossils or petroleum. A rather large unpleasant visitor from outer space hit the Yucatan Peninsula 65 million years ago leaving a 110 mile in diameter crater. This led to climate change and multiple bad days for the dinosaurs.

This interstellar event horizon collision did provide a financial windfall for Stan Sacrison some 67 million year later. In 1987, Mr. Sacrison found an almost complete skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus Rex in Montana. Mr. Sacrison naturally named his find after himself calling him Stan the T Rex. Stan was a big boy, 40 feet long and 13 feet high. It turned out Stan was worth a lot of money, selling last month by the Christie Auction for $31.8 million. This was the largest amount a fossil ever sold for. Good job, Stan. Stan’s Mom would be proud of her boy finally making good after 65 million years. It shows the value of perseverance. It’s an ill asteroid that blows no one no good. So even though all the dinosaurs had to go to dinosaur heaven, at least Mr. Sacrison had a good pay day.

Can anything good come from an asteroid striking and destroying the Earth? It would wipe out COVID-19 and the My Pillow Guy. Herd immunity would instantly take place leaving the Rona no place to go. Bill Barr would no longer be U.S. Attorney General. We would no longer have to put up with obnoxious Dook basketball fans. Q Anon could no longer rant about demons in pizza parlors. You would never again have to struggle to open those plastic bags at the grocery store that stick together in the produce section. Spam robo calls would cease forever. You would never have to remember your new passwords.

If you are actually reading this deep into the column, congratulations. The Earth was not destroyed by 2018 VPI. Unfortunately, you are now living in a world of post-presidential election hijinx. Maybe that errant asteroid creaming the Earth doesn’t look so bad after all. Good luck with the election fall out. Like Roseanne Roseannadanna once said, “It’s always something.”

Pictured: An asteroid named 2018 VPI is cruising toward the Earth at 25,000 miles an hour. The science guys tell us there is a very small chance it could hit the Earth.

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