As I stood in the path of Neptune’s wrath, stared into the wide, angry eyes of the end of the world, such unlikely things popped into my mind. Scenes from movies –comedies, no less– child actors that would reach the apex of their careers at age eleven, Hollywood resurgences decades away, if at all. I stood, transfixed, before I began to run –pointlessly fleeing– watching a wall of blue-gray water come to the shore in apparent slow-motion. Then suddenly faster, alarmingly larger, inescapably closer, the reality of my imminent demise was as sure as the sun will rise tomorrow, as unavoidable as the ocean tides.
Even as the wave towered above my pesky stature, swallowed me in its long shadow just before devouring me in its bite of salt and foam, I neglected to page through the scrap-book catalogue of my past, to flip through the flashes of images from my youth, the fragmented joys and traumas of childhood that I assumed was the accustomed go-to in the moments before we die. Instead, I lingered on scenes from Home Alone, of a family across the world in Paris while their son was left behind to orchestrate blissful mischief back in their affluent suburb of Chicago. As the dark, ocean water rose to blot out the bright sky above, I daydreamed of home invaders, a pair of robbers –two idiots, really– the self-styled “Wet Bandits,” and considered that this is how the world would look if all the faucets of the earth had been left on with their drains intentionally plugged.