the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, It was New Year’s Eve 1999, and the fate of the entire world was dangling.
If you’re a certain age, you’ll remember it—the Y2K mass hysteria, also known as the “Millennium bug,” the “Y2K glitch” and the “Y2K problem.”
Computer programmers and users worldwide faced a fatal flaw—their programs were not formatted to recognize a 4-digit calendar date using double zeroes as the last two digits.
As we approached midnight, the fear was that clocks and computers would go haywire and worldwide infrastructure would crash,
One concerned businessman was local NJ celebrity Thomas Giacomaro, author of the memoir The King of Con: How a Smooth-Talking Jersey Boy Made and Lost Billions, Baffled the FBI, Eluded the Mob, and Lived to Tell the Crooked Tale.
“My mother came over with her bible that night because she was paranoid the world would be plunged into chaos,” Giacomaro recalls. “She withdrew all her money from the bank and stored cans of food and bottles of water in the basement.”
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But as Thomas and his family watched the clocks and crowds in Times Square, they worried about the wrong apocalypse. A different, more dangerous bug was being planted.
On TV that night came dramatic, breaking news from Russia: President Boris Yeltsin announced his resignation and longtime KGB foreign intelligence officer, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, became Acting President.
“My mother shuddered when Putin’s face appeared on screen,” Giacomaro remembers.
“She clutched her bible to her chest and said, ‘I have a feeling something terrible is going to happen. It’s the end.’”
She was right about Putin, just off with her timing.
Twenty-two years later, Putin’s invasion of Ukraine is “compelled by God” to fulfill Armageddon prophecy, TV evangelist Pat Robertson, 91, insisted a few days ago.
Then again, the evangelist has claimed the end was nigh numerous times—most recently in October 2020, when God told him Donald Trump would win the presidential election and soon after, an asteroid would destroy earth.
All we can say is…until that day comes, Glory to Ukraine!