I was supposed to die in war, but my war ended up not happening. When growing up in the seventies and eighties, we were constantly told the Third World War was coming, and most predicted it would happen by 1986 at the latest. There were almost weekly specials on the television explaining to us what would happen: within minutes of the beginning both sides would go full nuclear. The armies, the regular ground pounding grunts, had the life expectancy of a corpse. So did everyone else. All life would be wiped out.
We grew up with a sense of fatalism and foreboding. We would not live. But as we edged closer to what was supposed to be the ultimate limit of all our spans, something odd happened: nothing. It became more and more apparent that nothing was about to happen. Now a different kind of gloom settled upon my generation. We were going to live and sweat under the weary burden of the future after all. Our deaths were shipped backwards and it seemed we might even have a normal lifespan. It left us with just one little question: Now what?