The end of the world as we know itbyZanzibar©
"It's the END OF THE WORLD as we know it!"
the headline of the tabloid screamed.
I stood there in line,
with my precious 8 items
(Having ditched the bag of
chips to avoid the ignominy
of being stomped
by five grey haired ladies
bussed in from Leisure world.)
and wondered what it was
Giant asteroids the size of Australia
smashing us all to smithereens
or two headed alien love children
cloned from Elvis and Madonna?
Hurriedly I flipped the pages,
competing with the frenetic
movement of the express
lane as the
saccharine smiled checker
collected checks and counted out change,
determined to find out what it was
without shelling out the
cash to buy this torrid rag.
(To say nothing of the sin of having
9 items in the 8 items or less lane!)
I whipped past the topless wenches
On pages 2 and 3, scanned between
the ads for GUARANTEED
WEIGHT LOSS only $19.95,
rocketed past astrologers columns
and psychic's advice - leaving my fate
to be a surprise, instead of planned rut.
Finally, just as the cashier called out
"Paper or plastic?"
to the woman in front of me,
I found the article causing
such headline hue and cry!
"ASPERTAME OUT! SPLENDA IN!"
the article screamed in bold print.
I looked at my 12 pack
of diet coke in horror
as the paper fluttered to the ground,
it's job of terrorizing complete.
Oh my god it's true! It says
on the label:
"Now made with Splenda!"
It was almost enough to
make me go back to
the corn syrupy sweetness
of Coke Classic.
The checker rung me up.
I handed over a rumpled twenty
and got back two small bags and
17 cents in change.
I could only shake my head
as I walked out to my car.
I'd survive, but the tabloid was right.
the end of the world as I knew it.