There are only eight minutes until the end of the world. Here are some ways to spend them:
1. call a loved one, or as many loved ones as time will allow. make sure to give each one the time, space, and attention they need, but also make it clear that you’re trying to work your way through as much of a fairly long list as you can.
2. listen to the live 1977 recording of “Rhiannon” (you will have 5 seconds unaccounted for, but let’s assume it takes you five seconds to pull up the track and connect your airpods)
3. jar of peanut butter, spoon
4. put “Live Through This” on shuffle and turn the volume all the way up (your neighbors are a non-issue; this is not the time for community building) and destroy as many expensive and breakable things as you can
5. try to come up with a good tweet
6. watch the Meg Stalter video where she wears a big hat to brunch one final time
7. take a shower or bath (do not bring your phone); if you have access to a jacuzzi, duh
8. go outside. run to the nearest body of water -- even if it’s that random like canal that the little metropolitan ave bridge crosses over -- and get inside of that body of water naked.
9. if you think you have time, get to the Rosemont or wherever you think Charlene might be… hopefully she does “The Cure”!
10. resist the urge to get in your car and just drive. so many other people will think of this that it will be impossible and you will die in traffic, which is not even funny in an ironic way.
11. light all of the incense you have, take all of your houseplants out of their pots, and just lie down together in the dirt on the floor. if you own a lava lamp, which you probably do if you have incense and houseplants, turn the lava lamp on.
12. FaceTime the most famous person in your phone
13. unsubscribe from as many email blasts as time will allow. when they talk about the “mortal coil” they are talking about your friends’ theater companies’ email blasts.
14. order pad thai, but not off seamless. order from the restaurant directly if you can.
15. start a few new group texts using the message “this is wild”
16. get. on. hinge! It is NEVER too late for love!
17. try to get Kathy Griffin to notice you. if you are Kathy Griffin, try to get in touch with Cher.
18. roller skates!
19. go live on Instagram while getting into drag; pin the caption to be “this is wild, mama”
20. hold your roommates and cry. thank them for being there for you and apologize for sometimes being moody. it's never really about them even when it is about them.
21. if it is snowing, get out there and enjoy it. dress warmly, but don’t eat up too much time layering and lacing up your boots.
22. “life is short, buy the lips!”
23. do the locomotion with me. (and if this is how you find out that Kylie Minogue sings “do the locomotion with me,” wow, what a good way to finish things out!)
24. watch Gaga’s 2020 VMA performance (some of the best vocals of her career) but skip over the piano part so you can watch “911” twice.
24b. be glad you’re not the one dancer who slipped and fell during the transition into “Born This Way” during her superbowl
25. paint your nails
26. carve a jack-o-lantern
27. shave your head
28. see if you really can bite off your own pinky finger. allegedly, they’re as easy to bite through as a baby carrot but we can just never bring ourselves to do it because we have such a mental block. see if you can overcome that mental block in this final moment.
29. let the dog off the leash.
30. text your ex something weird. take a screenshot and send it to one of the group texts from 15 with the caption “wow i really am that ex” and then the monkey covering his eyes
31. come clean: share with your community how much you love Kim Zolciak
32. read that one short story that always makes you cry. the one about the little boy whose best friend is the inflatable little boy that ends with the non-inflatable little boy assisting the inflatable little boy in suicide.
33. hide in your fallout shelter. don't bring anyone that you’re only bringing because you feel like you’re supposed to.
34. eat as many Flintstone gummies as you want
35. “The Wizard and I” sing along
36. bring all of the pillows and blankets in your apartment to the floor in front of your sectional couch. put them in a big pile and then put on “Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves” on Disney+. barricade your door and eat an ice cream sundae with jarred peaches.
37. see what Chani Nicholas has to say about all this
38. delete your Facebook, cancel your credit cards, cut up all forms of photo identification, and put on a disguise. go out into the world completely new, completely untethered. die a total stranger, someone of whom there is no record or history or web of relationships and past encounters.
39. okay. you know how when archaeologists discovered Pompeii they were able to make plaster casts of the bodies that were buried in ash because the ash became rock and the bodies decomposed and disintegratedand left body-shaped holes in the stone? on the off chance that this ends up being one of those situations and someone thousands of years from now (maybe an alien!) is going to dig up or make a plaster cast of your body, what is the silliest pose you can be in or something? do that! this is important because the person (or alien) who discovers you is either going to be like “lol this is kind of genius, they were funny!” or take your pose completely seriously and try earnestly to think about why you would have, in your final moments, convinced your friends to all lie down on the floor with your bodies in the shape of the word “wig” and, honestly, whether or not they get that it was just a troll will say much more about them than it will about you.
40. if you are a cult leader, tell your cult that this is it!
41. finally accept yourself.
42. finally love your body.
44. realize that there are some people whose phones are blowing up in this moment with all kinds of people confessing their love for them and telling them how much they care about them and are grateful for them, and you just might not be one of those people. you either are or you aren’t and this moment isn’t going to change that. (if you’re a Leo and reading this like “huh?” literally LOL bye)
45. book a nice hotel room and then cancel the booking.
46. try to go to sleep like that old couple in Titanic
47. if you have kids, i don’t know what to tell you. probably just give them their iPads.
48. listen to old recordings of yourself singing.
49. delete the apps
50. if you happen to be on vacation or otherwise away from home when this is happening what you should and will be able to do will depend on where you are. see if there are any tiktoks that give suggestions of things that only the locals will know about!
51. admit to yourself that, yes, you have been involved in a pyramid scheme. there is absolutely no reason to feel bad about that. it’s your life and you can do what you want. if you got something positive out of it (money, friends, a sense of power/possibility) then it was probably worth it. but stop trying to act like it’s not a pyramid scheme or you’ve been struggling with “the stigma there can be around MLMs” just sell your shampoo.
52. turn to god. start with, “well, god. it's been a minute.” now, you’re going to want to make sure god knows you’re not just reaching out because you need something, so ask god how god’s been doing first. tell god “i know. it's been crazy. but i’m glad you’ve been taking care of you <3” and then go in for the ask (which is eternal salvation)
53. yoga/meditation, if that is your thing. but don’t just try it now if it’s not something you’ve already been doing. like actually really doing.
54. learn something new for the last time, like what a Roth IRA is or how lift works (re: airplanes)
55. see what Marianne Williamson has to say about this. whatever she suggests you do, i suggest you do that.
56. take nudes but do not post them. you will get dragged!
57. just curl up into a ball in your bed or in your closet and scream and cry until it’s all over.
58. if there was ever a time to start drinking again… girl, it’s now!
59. RHONY gangster lunch (Season 9, Episode 13)
60. try to cut down on screen time
61. take all of your pills
62. ingest a bunch of plant seeds and/or essential oils. similar to 39, alien paleontologists may some day be trying to learn about our civilization by seeing what was in our stomachs when we died, and i think it would be funny to throw them a red herring but it has to be something believable.
63. play a quick game of dominos or cards with your parents; it always ends up being really fun.
64. email all of your old tutoring students and ask them if they still think about you and if you left a lasting impact on them as students or if you were just a blip on the radar. don't be weird about it, though.
65. sign up for your own Google alerts
66. yeah, i really keep coming back to the idea of like eating or tasting random stuff just to see what it’s like since you won’t have to actually like follow through with digesting it
67. apologize to the people you have hurt
68. release your resentments
69. sex, obviously, if that’s available to you.
70. get that inbox to 0
71. put on your favorite outfit. try not to think about it in terms of making yourself look hot, but really put on the clothes that bring you joy or are comfortable or you associate with fond memories. literally wrap your body in love.
72. do not go down the path of coulda woulda shoulda. there are infinite choices you didn’t make, things you didn’t say, moments you didn’t take and each of those leads to infinite more paths with infinite more paths immediately following. if you start to think about it in terms of every second of your entire life, it’s literally impossible. but the life you did lead, the things you did accomplish, the people you did meet and share your heart with, the lives you did touch and that touched yours, the moments you laughed and cried with other people who you care about, the concerts you went to together, the worlds you built together, the times you held each other in your arms and felt seen and safe and loved unconditionally and without judgement, all of that is finite. it can be counted and weighed and remembered. it's all real and it’s all yours. that can never be taken away from you.
73. Julia Murney’s Actors’ Fund “Nobody’s Side” but the video from the dress rehearsal, not the actual concert
74. if you haven’t already watched Veneno by now, i don’t know what to tell you. there actually isn’t time.
75. let’s play some basketball
76. do NOT reach out to the friends who cut you out of their lives. and if they reach out to you, do NOT respond. they made the decision, not you. and their reaching out in the final eight minutes of the planet just once again reveals their selfishness.
77. start counting and do not stop
78. host a Zoom happy hour
79. text screenshots of other people’s instagram posts to your friends and make fun of them together
80. look through old photos of all the past lives you lived. remind yourself of all the things you did. pick one you really wish you could go back to and promise yourself that whatever is on the other side of all this will be just like that. for me, it would be early 2016 and i would be at the bar Laidak in Berlin, except all of my friends and loved ones would be there with me, just like the very last scene in Titanic when Rose comes back into the ballroom and everyone is there clapping for her and Jack and nobody is wet and frozen anymore.
81. thank your superintendent
82. do your best Fran Lebowitz impression (it does not have to be good; you will have fun regardless)
83. play the iphone game High Heels.
84. try to get garbage and food that will rot out of your apartment so that it stays nice in there as long as possible (should it continue to exist)
85. make your bed! i can’t believe i'm saying this because my eyes used to roll so far back into my head when i would hear some idiot talking about “oh it makes such a difference you don’t even realize it it literally takes 30 seconds and it really does improve your entire day” but those idiots were right and i should have listened to them sooner. the thing about idiots is that they just do what they want when they want to do it. they aren’t constantly trying to be perfect or correct or be the only one completing the group project so that everyone gets an A. they just make their beds and live their lives knowing that there will always always always be someone else to finish the group project.
86. if this is a flood situation, get to higher ground not because you think it will help you survive but because it’ll give you a great view.
87. if this is a nuclear apocalypse situation, you want to go in the first blast. trust me. you do not want to be in the outer radius where all of your skin burns off your body but you’re still alive, you want to be as close to catching that bomb in your hands as you possibly can.
88. throw your computer and any external hard drives in the ocean
89. smoke something cute
90. if you’re going down the “communicating with friends and loved ones” route in any of the ways previously mentioned, wait for people to reach out to you and when they do act like you have no idea what’s going on so that their final memory of you is how you’re that cool aloof but brilliant girl.
91. write little messages on the walls of your apartment.
92. do a facemask and put a little bit of weed in your tea
93. sit down with a legal pad and a pen and just start writing, whatever comes to your mind, without thinking about it, and don’t stop. just let it vomit out of you and trust that it is interesting and worthwhile and you can always edit it later. (of course, in this instance, you will not be able to edit it later, but that does not matter.)
94. turn on Fox for just a second just to see how they’re covering this
95. kylie. minogue.
96. look your humidifier in the eyes and sing a sincere and heartfelt “thank you for being a friend”
97. write a list of all of the people and corporations who are to blame for this, including those who profited off of negligence or the turning of a blind eye
98. start a feud with Giada de Laurentiis from the Food Network
99. know that you are not the first person to die, and you will not be the last. trust that, as isolated as you feel, you are never alone.
100. “The Wizard and I” sing along