Raleigh, NC: If you resolved to lose fifty pounds this year or to limit your habit to one pack a day, you might want to hurry up. Or just give up altogether. It turns out that this year will be a short one since the Apocalypse is due to start in May.

Our only hope against the End of Days.

Harry Camping, an 89-year-old retired civil engineer, spent hours reading his Bible before he came to the conclusion that the Rapture is set to occur on May 21, 2011. Those who don’t get sucked out of their socks and into the heavenly blue will endure torment until October, when Camping predicts the world will come to its fiery end.

Now, he and others who believe in his prediction are traveling the globe in RVs, spreading the apocalyptic news in the hopes of saving a few souls before it’s too late.

“May 21, 2011! Are you ready?!” yelled Allie Wood, a faithful Camping follower, into her bullhorn at a North Carolina rally to spread the news. Less than 20 people attended the rally, which didn’t surprise the young woman.

“We have a lot of critics,” she said. “Like the Mayan believers. They still believe we have more than a year left. But we know that their rock calendars are the work of satanic chiselers. Harry Camping figured out the real date.”

Here we go again.

Camping is, of course, not the first to claim to know Earth’s expiration date. The earliest apocalyptic prophesies put the date in the year 30 C.E. and not a century has passed when someone somewhere wasn’t claiming that the end was near. Even the Vatican got in on the action when Pope Innocent III predicted the end would happen in 1284 (because, naturally, it was 666 years after the founding of Islam). And October 22, 1844 was the date William Miller proclaimed to be the end of days. The day came and went and is now known as the Great Disappointment. The Watchtower Society has been a little more flexible, setting the date first in 1914, then 1915, 1918, 1920, 1925, 1941, 1975 and 1994 (they updated their predictions as each year came and went without incident). And, of course, there’s bound to be a couple of Y2K believers still buried in their underground bunkers somewhere, surviving on a diet of water and SPAM.

When asked what he will do if May 21st comes and he doesn’t get whisked away into a heavenly paradise, Camping replied “It won’t mean I’m wrong. It’ll just mean I wasn’t saved.”

Allie Wood agreed. “He’s totally right. There’s no way he’s wrong. It’s in the Bible. And everything in the Bible is true.”

So if you’re already failing at your New Year’s Resolutions, there’s no need to worry. Just jump on Camping’s rapture bandwagon when it comes rolling into a town near you.