Saturday, August 18, 2012

Penthouse And The End Of The World

As some of you may know, I do quite a bit of writing for Penthouse. Well, the new issue (September) contains a 4-page article from me on the "2012/Mayan Prophecies" controversy, with the bulk of the article focused upon an extensive interview I did with good friend Marie Jones about her book on the subject, 2013: Envisioning the World After the Events of 2012, The End of Days or a New Beginning?

Without doubt (in my view) Marie's is certainly the most balanced of all the books I have read on the 2012 saga, and it's one I urge you to read if you're counting down the days to December 21. Or even if you're not!

PS: there's much more to enjoy in the magazine, too...



  1. I'm guessing that when 21st December passes by without event this book will be another shoddy effort confined to the bargain bins ?!

  2. Hey Neil

    I would definitely have to disagree. Marie's book is a look at the 2012 phenomenon and why people believe this or that, and how we are influenced by culture, history or prophecies etc.

    The very last thing is, is a book saying "The world is going to end in December."

    As an example of Marie's train of thought, here's a quote from Marie in the Penthouse article, which hardly tows the 2012 party-line of the doomsday crowd:

    “So much of what the public reads about the 2012 enigma is just plain bunk, pure crap. It’s either perpetuated for purposes of monetary gain, religious fear or plain ignorance. But crap nonetheless. And, when it spreads, it can be very frustrating for anyone who has bothered to examine the facts and look for the truth.”

    And one more quote from the article from Marie:

    “The obsession we have with the end, I believe, is partially a subconscious attempt to come to grips vicariously, via movies, books, TV shows and even prophecies of others, with the fear of non-existence. We all feel that fear. We share it as humans."

  3. One more comment: most 2012 books are about what will happen (based on the author's beliefs). Marie's book is a study of the 2012 controversy - which is, of course, a very different approach.

  4. Neil:

    One other thing/analogy for anyone who has not yet read Marie's book, which I hope will give a good idea of it's style, content etc:

    Numerous books have been written on Roswell that address various theories, how many bodies were found, was there more than one crash site, why did the Air Force change its story, was it a UFO or a secret military device etc?

    What has NOT been written about Roswell is a book that explains why and how Roswell has become a part of history, pop-culture, entertainment, intrigue, and how it has affected and influenced people's lives (authors, researchers, families of the people involved etc).

    That's how I would describe Marie's book: it's not so much a study of what will or will not happen in December. It's about 2012 as a piece of culture, and fascination and how, as we get closer, more and more theories are surfacing re what might happen, who is saying what, how even the public are getting fearful of the old stories, and why people believe prophecies.

    You have written a lot of books on cryptozoology. Imagine if, instead of writing a book on Big Cat sightings in the UK, you wrote a book on the Big Cat scene in the UK, the players, the researchers, the theories, the media and public attitudes to the Cats, who believes the cats are zoo escapees, who believes they are paranormal, why people find such things fascinating etc.

    That's what Marie's 2013 is to the 2012 controversy.

  5. As an scatological exploration, Marie's book sounds very interesting. I think I'll grab a copy from her @ Paradigm.

  6. I think you'll find that someone called Rick Minter wrote a rather bland book recently on the points you make re; big cats. I've never written a book on 'big cats', only the regional 'Mystery Animals...' ones for CFZ and have no intention of doing one to be honest.

    My original comment regarding the end of the world book comes from reading a lot of other theories, but to be honest, I didn't realise there was any 'controversy' about 2012!! I've read of no such hysteria, theories, opinions, fears in the UK.

  7. Neil:

    Yes, I know you have not written a book on big cats. I actually said: "Imagine if, instead of writing a book on Big Cat sightings in the UK..."

    That's a very different thing.

    My point is that if you were to write a book not about big-cats, but instead you wrote one about the people in the subject, who believes what, who thinks they are zoo escapees and why, who thinks they are this or that etc, that would make that book VERY different from most books that look at the reports.

    And thats what Marie's book has done for 2012 and why it is VERY different to most 2012 books.

    In your first comment, you said: "I'm guessing that when 21st December passes by without event this book will be another shoddy effort confined to the bargain bins ?!"

    That implies it's a book that says the prophecies are going to come true, or that a planet will collide with the earth, or that a huge flood is going to overwhelm the planet.

    Marie's book doesn't say anything like that (she's not a prophet or a channeler!). It addresses the phenomenon of 2012 and why people believe things and how prophecies become accepted as fact by certain.

    In that sense, as its not about what will or wont happen, but instead is about the whole cultural aspects of what 2012 means/implies, it's pretty much totally different to any other book on 2012 - in the sense that most of them have an agenda that the end is coming. And yes, those authors ARE going to look very foolish. But Marie isn't saying ANY end is coming. She's addressing why people think it is.

  8. I'm a big animation fan —It's a great excuse for still liking cartoons even after you're passed the age when you're not supposed to be watching them— and when a guy by the name of Amid Amidi was starting to promote his latest book, a biography on Ward Kimball —one of Disney's original Nine Men— I tried to reach Amidi and ask him if the book would include a reference to Kimball's fascination to UFOs, or maybe even the story related to how supposedly the Air Force contacted Disney in an attempt to make a film about UFOs which would include a clip from the infamous Holloman landing.

    Well, as you might imagine I never received any answer from Amidi, nor would I expect his book to ever mention anything about UFOs; and frankly I think that's a darn shame, since these 'serious' historians seem to think that bringing flying saucers to the table would automatically imply they take the matter seriously.

    This is clearly a faulty bias, since nobody would be bothered if a book delves into some famous artist's religious views, because a historian's job is not to judge the validity of their subject's belief system, but instead appraising how those belief systems would later influence the artist's career. So, you can write about Van Gogh's radical views on Christianity, but apparently you can't write about Ward Kimball's interest in UFOs :-/

    I bring all this up since it seems pertinent in the discussion re. Marie's approach to the 2012 topic. Regardless of what happens the morning of December 23rd, the fact that so many people got involved with the End Times mythos will be a subject of study for many historians and sociologists in the years to come.

  9. I'm still confused because as I stated, I don't know of many people in the UK who think 2012 is significant in any way, so where have these theories come from ? Isn't this simply a false theory/suggestion akin to the panic caused by the end of 1999.

    Nick, as I also said, a book has already bene written regarding big cat theories, effects, researchers etc.

  10. Hey Neil:

    Yeah, the 2012 fears are exactly like the Y2K thing, and the Nostrodamus/1999 stuff too.

    But my point in this debate was to respond to your original comment, which was: "I'm guessing that when 21st December passes by without event this book will be another shoddy effort confined to the bargain bins ?!"

    My reason for commenting in-depth on your comment was becase it appeared from your "shoddy effort" comment, you assumed Marie supported the 2012 theories, was telling people the world was going to end etc.

    Marie is pointing out - ironically - the same thing as you: things like the panic around 1999, and why and how people believe such things.

    That's why I commented, and that's also why I feel Marie's book really IS the best book on the subject. Because it's not about preparing for the end or what the end might be. It's why people get caught up in belief systems, how prophecies get accepted as fact etc.

  11. Is the '2012 phenomenon' restricted to the US because I've heard no such panics in the UK. I could understand it with 1999, as everyone was talking about it, new millennium etc, but I've heard nothing regarding 2012, except Marie's book! Doesn't this suggest then that Marie's book is also part of the unfoudned 'phenomenon' if you catch my drift.

    1. Hey Neil
      I wouldnt say it's specifically restricted to the US, but it is in the US where it gets most coverage, there's no doubt about that at all.
      Yes, we could say Marie's book is indeed a part of that, but at least she is looking at in a responsible way. I have read a couple of books on 2012 that are downright reckless in terms of what the author claims to KNOW what will happen.
      That Marie addresses the claims and beliefs and suggests probably nothing will happen is very refreshing! LOL

  12. I might write a book called 'Nothing Is Going To Happen At The End Of Any Year'

    1. LOL, better make it quick know, just in case! :)