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A Cockroach in the Kitchen is NOT the End of the World

July 6, 2020
Oriental cockroach on soil

Photo credit: John Obermeyer

I don’t spend a lot of time pondering what might cause the end of our world as we know it, be it an asteroid colliding with and knocking Earth out of orbit; a rogue black hole appearing out of nowhere, sucking Earth into its inescapable and unforgiving clutches; a massive volcanic eruption filling the atmosphere with dust and debris, blocking the sun from warming the Earth and stopping all vegetative photosynthesis; a worldwide disease pandemic for which no cure can be found; or something man-made, such as a sudden nuclear war and massive radiation covering the Earth, or pollution-caused climate changes that slowly but irreversibly destabilize Earth’s global ecosystems.

Whatever the cause, the end result is the same for human existence. Not a pleasant thought, and that is why I don’t like to dwell on it.

What is more interesting to me is to think about what might be left and about what non-human life forms doomsday theorists predict will be the last to perish. General consensus is that humans are quite fragile compared to other animals, and that cockroaches are most favored to be the last man standing in an apocalyptic world.

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