The Blue Raccoon

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

I'm Thinking Of A Number: The Longest Day and The End Of Days

Greetings, y'all. Yes, just like that Free Credit spokesmodel (thankfully, the annoying guy has been replaced by a husky-voiced, auburn-haired woman) I'm thinking of a number. It's today's date, the sixth day of the sixth month in 2006. The numeric confluence of t has caused holier-than-thou joy among the fundies whose simple understanding of the book they claim to tout is mixed up with watching too many Cecil B. DeMille epics. The world's supposed to end a in a big flash and burn with the righteous taken up to chill for all eternity with the Heavenly Hosts (Is that a Fox Network news show?). Anyway, all this rush to rapture is because John did 'shrooms while exiled on Patmos and under the influence then wrote one of the world's most enduring horror stories.

But this morning I have neither the time nor energy to parse apart this numerology meets mythology meets zealotry that these days seems to govern the better senses of many people who should know better. I blame television, poor education and the Left Behind novels.

What will get passing mention today -- assuming that at some point today we all don't all go simultaneous when the air becomes uranious (thank you Tom Lehrer) -- is the 62nd anniversary of the landing on the Normandy beaches by Allied forces during World War II. The moment is depicted above in one of the 11 astounding images taken by Life photographer Robert Capa. Capa took many more pictures that day but a hasty dark room clerk destroyed them.

So let's take a moment and reflect on the meaning of this day which began the liberation of Europe from Nazi tyranny. It was a climactic hour in one of the last wars of recent human history that made any sense. That statement might've seemed fairly abstract to one of those guys hugging that steel obstacle as machine gun bullets zinged around them.

Further, if you have nothing else better to do today, scroll down and read my quasi-autoptic-revisionistic-alternate history take on how June 6, 1944 could've just been another day at the French beach.

One final note. A World War II veteran of my acquaintance saw Saving Private Ryan (Did it really come out in 1998? Holy criminy.) and was moved by its battlefield authenticity. But, he was quick to point out, the hinging plot point of the entire film -- that of dispatching Capt. Tom Hanks
behind German lines in command of a platoon of stereotypes to find Private Matt Damon--wouldn't have been necessary. He shrugged, "We had radios."

Enjoy six-sixty-six. We have radios.

And, check out the film Pi. Which, also, came out in 1998 -- and Pi's web site is still running but Ryan's is not.


Here's a movie about numbers and mystery and intrigue that makes as much coherence as the boiling pot of nonsense the rest of the world is lately tripping on. And there's nary a mention of anything related to DaVinci. Its tagline is well-suited to the present: "Paranoia is faith in a hidden order behind the visible." And you can take that to the NSA.



At 10:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Want some laughs and/or shocks? Turn to Google and put in "Thomas Ice (Bloopers)," "Famous Rapture Watchers," "Pretrib Rapture Diehards," and "Appendix F: Thou Shalt Not Steal." Just thought you'd like to know.


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