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'Left behind' by humorgeddon

Delos Johnson via Flickr

Delos Johnson posted this photo from Alabama: "We just went for a short walk and then ... poof ... gone ... um ... what's that smell? ... yikes! ... brimstone."

The end times are no laughing matter, but when someone declares a particular day to be the start of the end, that can open the door for levity as well as lamentation. The most popular way to have a little fun with the Rapture — also known as Rapture bombing — has been to set out clothes to make it look as if the wearers were transported up to heaven.

There are literally scores of such pictures streaming onto Flickr, Yfrog, Instagram, Twitpic and other picture-sharing sites. Many of them have been flagged on Twitter with the hashtags #rapturebomb or #raptureprank. Here are a few of the favorites:

David Kinsey via Facebook

David Kinsey made this his new Facebook profile picture, with this caption:‎'"Interesting article in Ti....' It's Rapture Day! Hahahaha Pose your clothes, without you in 'em, and at the end of the day, give 'em away! A new, annual, halloween-ish holiday, 3rd Saturday in May, to benefit charity."

Delos Johnson via Flickr

Another one from Delos Johnson: "Close call! Almost had to cut the grass today. Feeling pretty rapturous about getting out of it!"

Rob Sheridan via Instagram

Here's a his-and-hers picture posted by Rob Sheridan: "Happy Rapture Day!"

Thanks to Delos Johnson, Rob Sheridan and David Kinsey for sharing. And special thanks to California photographer Brian Helm, a Cosmic Log correspondent who went the extra mile by shooting a five-minute video about the day of the fake Rapture:

From Brian Helm in Studio City, Calif.: "It's the morning of May 21st, 2011. The end of the world might really be near. Not everyone is gone, but many are, and more are disappearing. Is this really the Rapture?"

One of the other popular concepts for Rapture bombing was to set loose a load of helium-filled blow-up dolls, to make it look as if souls were rising up into the sky. The interesting thing is, that idea was already caught on tape five years ago, as a lead-in for an episode of the "Six Feet Under" series about a quirky funeral-home family. Here it is:

Opening death from an episode of "Six Feet Under" title "In Case of Rapture."

Again, religious beliefs are nothing to laugh at, and there will be very serious repercussions in the days ahead, particularly for folks who spent their assets with the expectation that they'd enter immortality on Saturday. I hope Rapture bombing isn't seen as a criticism of Christianity. Think of it as a stress-reliever for the people who have been inundated by all the hype over the past week.

More about the Rapture rumblings:

Even though Saturday is already finished with in some parts of the world, I'll still be blogging about the Rapture hype until the day is totally finished. You can follow the updates by checking CosmicLog.com/Rapture. You can also connect with the Cosmic Log community by "liking" the log's Facebook page or following @b0yle on Twitter. And for something completely different, check out "The Case for Pluto," my book about the controversial dwarf planet and the search for new worlds.