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Manual Twenty Minutes to Midnight

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Choose from the following styles or use what your English teacher tells you to and stick to it:- a. Some people myself included use a dot as the separator: 2. On the hour. What to say. Writing the time. Time Idioms. Because it can be difficult to say whether 12 o'clock is during the day or the night, we use two special terms. Twelve fifteen or Quarter past twelve. Twelve thirty or Half past twelve We never say "half to". Twelve forty-five or Quarter to one. At other "odd" times, when we want to be accurate, we add the word "minute s " If you want to avoid trying to remember when to use "minutes" and when not to just say "nearly" or "just turned".

Excuse me. What time is it, please?


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It's exactly eight o'clock. I mentioned it again to my staff, and they said—Have you been reading the news? Vivos sends me a brochure for a luxury shelter to be built in Germany—an overhaul of a massive Cold War bunker that the Soviets dug out of a mountain. The Russians have an animal DNA vault.

But nobody has built a DNA ark for humans. Why does that seem crazy? In three days, the article on the Forbes site is viewed half a million times. Building a shelter replaces dread with a to-do list, while at the same time fanning the flames of that fear, which offers its own kind of fun, as we invent elaborate and exciting scenarios of our own demise.

We embrace the death wish. Safe in here, everything out there is cause for concern. Drug-resistant super bugs, West Nile, Lyme, Ebola, cancer, bird flu, swine flu, solar storms, climate change, drought, plague, pole shifts, political upheaval, overpopulation, terrorism, supervolcanoes, earthquakes, tornados, tsunamis, economic meltdown, electromagnetic pulses, nuclear war, killer asteroids, the death of the bees, the rise of the machines, the coming of the Rapture, the zombie apocalypse.

Fantasizing about the end is a way of sidestepping responsibility—of overlooking the problems, or systems of inequality, that we might actually be contributing to. Say, disparities in class and race, global inequality, our environmental footprint, to name just a few.

Three Minutes to Midnight - Guernica

Destruction always finds the right door to knock on. Our fate is even sealed by science, which tells us we inhabit a galaxy spinning outward into nothing, where by various immutable laws of physics entropy, thermodynamics , we wind up on the other end of eternity hopelessly cold and alone. In other words, where the hell is everybody? This disconnect—infinite universe, no sign of life—is known as the Fermi paradox.

It points to the unsettling underbelly of progress. Technology tends toward the dark side. There might be a pattern born out across the universe: civilizations develop to the point where they have the power to do themselves in—and then pull the trigger. My mind filled with bunkers, I seek higher ground. To the Griffith Observatory on the top of Mount Hollywood—an art deco masterpiece that has brought the public closer to the stars since Built to withstand an earthquake, the white concrete temple with its three copper domes sits near the Hollywood sign and is itself a screen icon, having been featured in, among others, Rebel without a Cause and three Terminator movies.

A forty-foot-long pendulum swings in the central rotunda—the pound brass ball stays steady in its course, while the earth spins beneath it. A display talks of bursts of gamma rays coming from distant collisions in space. Another discusses the asteroid that ended the dinosaurs. They hardly seem worried. From the roof of the observatory, joggers dot the trails winding through the canyons.

The city stretches before me in a gray haze. I think of smoke and the wildfires that ravage these hills.

'Doomsday Clock' stays at two mins to midnight

I picture the houses on stilts buckling in a mudslide. The sun will be setting soon. The ocean, for instance—the waves endlessly scraping away at the shore—or, closer in, the ancient tar pits, where mastodons, saber-toothed cats, sloths, and the like—a collection of creatures whose number came up a long time ago—trapped themselves unwittingly and sank underground, where they waited, entombed in asphalt, for someone else to come along and dig up the bones.

Everyone asks me when—When is it going to happen?

So what if I gave you a date? An event? Are you going to heed the call? Nature has a cleansing process. The wise and strong—they will survive. Does an international network of hardened bunkers truly exist? Vicino has tapped a vein. The story has legs.

Doomsday Clock reaches 2 minutes to midnight - closest point to nuclear annihilation since Cold War

We lean toward that person, hoping to infuse our confused lives with meaning. So we come to inhabit these bunkers of the mind, a string of shelters running beneath our feet, everywhere and nowhere, hidden just out of sight. The elite have multiple shelters. I know.

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Do you have yours? The government has been building big bunkers deep underground. They say you can go from DC to LA in twenty minutes. In the s, small towns all over America reported the sounds of locomotives underground. That was them building it. I watch a video tour. The bunker looks nice. Vicino calls it an underground cruise ship. It is another retrofit—a Cold War relic repurposed for the future. What goes around comes around. Our future has happened many times before.

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We live in an endlessly changing world. The problem is getting the word out. People think, Change is not going to happen in my lifetime. What can it all mean? How do we read the signs? Is history interconnected, a series of events that add up to a meaningful pattern that is somehow not of our own making? Or, looking back, do we only see our own reflection? Is that the true final tragedy—to be trapped in our own private visions of history?

My interest in the past has always been how it intrudes into the present—which then might suggest a course for the future. It is easier to use the international way to tell the time. Name the hour, then the minutes; exactly as it appears on a digital watch.