Short Stories

End of the World.

It was a cold 2:33 am one October morning when my friend came to my house to pick me up and drive nowhere. This wasn’t unusual. We did this about once a week.

We drove for a short time before we got on the highway, then started talking.

“Where will you be?” he inquired.

In a short bout of confusion, I replied.

“Where will I be when?”

His demeanor changed.

“Where will you be when the world ends?”

I didn’t know where he was going with this so I tried to inquire.

“I never thought about that…”

As we sat in his car, silent, with only the loud roaring of the highway buzzing passed a half cracked window, I started thinking.

“I guess Ill be wherever I am when it ends.”

He gave me a look that told me he wasn’t satisfied with that answer.

“You mean to tell me you have no idea what you want to be doing when the world ends? No specific place? Nobody that you want to be with?…nothing?”

“No” I told him with a somber tone.

The whole question made me uncomfortable. Not in a sense that I didn’t want to answer, but in a way that made me think about it more.

“Where do YOU think you’re going to be?” I countered.

“Me?” He replied.

“Well, Im going to be on my roof, eating pizza waiting for all of it to go down.”

“Thats it?” I asked. Edging him to go further. It seemed as if he had a…somewhat plan.

“Yeah, thats it! I want to view it all while it comes crashing. Thats the perfect scenario. Some people want to embrace their loved ones one last time, some want to live the highlife of drugs rock and roll and sex. Me? I just want to sit on my roof and eat a fucking pizza.”

“Whats so specific about pizza?”

“I don’t know, its just there. Its always been in my ‘end of the world scenario’. Whats it going to matter when the world ends?

I sat their quiet for about a minute. The white lines on the road continuously rolling under the car. Pitch black around us and I started to think.

“Thats going to be your final testament, you know. When people write about it, they’re going to say ‘We found the ashes of some guy on his roof who was apparently eating pizza.”

He was aggravated.

“That sounds perfect! Why wouldn’t I want to sit on my roof eating pizza? Its apparently better than your plan.”

He had me there. What was I going to do when the world ended? I had the image of myself browsing the internet or watching porn, something useless and unmeaningful. It saddened me so I lit a cigarette, cracked the window and started thinking.

“What kind of end of the world scenario do you have in mind?” I asked.

“Pfft. I dont know, probably a meteor, or nukes, or war, who cares? The world is going to end and Im going to be on my roof eating pizza.”

“This sounds rather normal, to be honest. I would expect someone like you to be doing whatever you can to make a statement one last time.”

He looked at me dead-eyed

“This IS a statement.”

I laughed.

“A statement about the pizza industry? ”

I could kind of see it. Like an advertisement on TV. “If the world is going to end, at least you wont have to worry about not having enough pizza!- DiGiornos”

“So?” he asked in a pushy way.

“Where will you be when the world ends?”

I started to think about this girl I sorta liked. How me and her really connected. I thought about if she would want to be “end of the world friends.” I was definitely going to ask her when I got home.

“I guess… I would like to be with someone I care about…?”

I still wasn’t sure.

“God, man. Have an imagination! The world is going to end and you don’t have an answer! Whats wrong with you! Everyone knows where they’re going to be when it ends!”

“What has you so wrapped up in the world ending?” I asked.

“I dont know, man. I just think its interesting to think about. I honestly cant believe you havnt thought about this…EVER.”

I guess at one point in my life I did. I thought about waking up one morning and seeing a white wall of inevitability encroaching closer and closer towards me.  I figured I would just stand there and watch.

“I guess Ill just stand there and watch…maybe eat a pizza or something.”

He dead-eyed me again.

“You cant just steal my idea! Thats MINE. Thats MY end of the world scenario! You cant just take someone else’s.”

I laughed. He was right. I was just stealing someone else’s story. I had no vision. No real idea. What was I going to when the world ended?

“I got it!” I replied.

“I think I know where Im going to be when the world ends!”

“Oh yeah? he replied looking at me, unaware of the moose that had just appeared in the headlights.