It's that time of year when it's time to get rid of the old and bring in the new.
I'm of course referring to the Mayan calendar. So at Janke Book Store in Wausau I set out to buy a new one. “Do you have any Mayan calendars?”
No more calendar, no more days.....
“You know the Mayan culture?
“Yes”, says UWMC Anthropology Professor, Ron Lippi.
So where do I get a new calendar?
"It's like the turn of the century for us. We just added a “two” to our number. It's the same for them."
It turns out this calendar was only good for a mere 5,000 years, dating back to around 3,100 B.C. There are still three others that are running. And while we have calendars with kitties, cars and cows; they had some symbols too.
" As the omens matched up on a day, they showed whether it would be a good one or a bad one,” says Lippi.
"They really paid attention to what happened in the sky, and they watched every night,"explains UWPS planetarium director, Chris Janssen.
But does the end of the Mayan long count calendar mean a big show? Volcanoes erupting? Earthquakes knocking down buildings?
“Planet Nibiru will impact Earth exactly on Friday, but no one has ever seen it. This planetary alignment that the astrologers have talked about, is not going to happen. So it's all fake,” says Janssen.
But here's the thing, even though one of their calendars is coming to an end, the Maya, they still exist - they see it as something else.
“In the culture it's not so much the end, but the beginning of a new cycle,” says Lippi.
There you have it. It may be the end of the calendar, or the end of the cycle or the end of time.
One thing is for certain, we'll all know when the calendar runs out at the winter solstice at 5:11 Friday morning.
So, for what may be the very last time, I'm Erik Mrotek.
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