If you want to see a roomful of people roll their eyes, just walk into a gathering of astronomers
and shout, “Mayan apocalypse!” For years now, the idea that the earth will be destroyed in a terrible
cataclysm on Dec. 21, 2012, has been bouncing around the internet and showing up in articles, books
and even movies. But despite what the tinfoil-hat crowd insists, an asteroid is not about to hit the
earth. Neither is there an imaginary planet called Nibiru. Our world isn’t going to be abruptly flipped
upside down like a burger on a griddle. What’s more, Mayan astrologers never said any of that stuff
would actually happen. Yes, the Maya had what’s known as a Long Count calendar, and yes, that
calendar ends on Dec. 21, 2012. But the nice thing about calendars, including the one the Maya used,
is that they always start over again from zero. All the same, some folks at NASA are worried—not
about the end of the world but about the harm all the loose talk may be doing. “I get a tremendous
number of e-mails about it,” says a scientist at the NASA. “A large fraction are from people asking if
the world will end. A few even talk about suicide.” In an attempt to stop the hysteria, NASA convened
a Google+ hangout during which people could ask astronomers anything they wanted to about the
rumors. For nearly an hour, the scientists soothed nerves, patiently explaining, for example, that an
asteroid en route to earth would have been spotted by telescopes long ago and that Nibiru, if it existed,
would now be the brightest object in the sky after the sun and moon.
【題組】38. What is the major concern of the scientists in NASA for the people who believed the theory?
(A) The possibility that the theory may be right after all.
(B) How NASA can deal with the situation when the end approaches.
(C) What explanation they can provide for the phenomenon.
(D) Finding the solution to the consequence of the theory.
(E) The fact that people might take drastic measures to deal with the impending cataclysm.