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Rapture: Not-so-good to go

The end of the world, predicted by preacher Harold Camping, must be set for another day: we're still here. But we had fun with the pretend possibilities!  

The Baltimore Sun published a Q and A with must I return my library books or will I be able to take them with me? questions.  

 A colleague, citing my theology degree, figured I would be a goner. But I was confident that this final exam was probably not predicated on graduate papers. Still, she wanted me to put in a good word for her about purgatory.  I asked if she wanted purgatory to be her destination or did she need an exit strategy?

 She wrote: "If there’s any question that I’ll go DIRECTLY to heaven then I’m willing to do time in purgatory (to get there).

 "My understanding is you must wear unflattering purgatory-issued apparel and are punished by spending your days splitting rocks with hammers. You spend nights praying for forgiveness and then you are absolved of your sinful ways and the exit is to heaven.

 "If not, just put in a good word for me in heaven. Tell them there must be some error in the paperwork.

 "Thanks. See you tomorrow (at the rapture)."

Looks like I'll see her on Monday, in the cafeteria, instead. We both have lots of unfinished business to tend to before we slip into that work-release program of splitting rocks.

 I'll stick to (occasionally) splitting infinitives, for now.

 Do you know anyone who really believed Saturday was 'the end' and made changes in their life?

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Spokesman-Review features writer Rebecca Nappi, along with writer Catherine Johnston of Olympia, Wash., discuss here issues facing aging boomers, seniors and those experiencing serious illness, dying, death and other forms of loss.