The end is nigh, so put on a happy face!

Like, totally: The apocalypse looms, and readers ask, “Bites, why can’t you be a little bit more positive?” Fair enough. This week, and this week only, Bites vows to spread sunshine and good cheer.

But first, a minor correction. In this week’s letters section, reader Ryan Andrew takes Bites to task for misappropriating the word “totalitarianism.” As Andrew correctly notes, the Unites States, which has freedom of speech and the press and doesn’t intrude in people’s lives (well, two out of three ain’t bad) isn’t technically a totalitarian regime.

Touché! What Bites really meant to say was that the United States is a teetotalitarian regime, defined as a repressive, authoritarian state run by a despot who abstains from alcohol, in our case, squeezably-soft President George W. Bush.

Blame it on the computer. Teetotalitarianism is a fresh coinage and was inadvertently “corrected” by Microsoft Word’s spell checker. All apologies to readers who mistakenly believed they lived in a democracy. It’s more like a dry drunkocracy, actually.

Department of TMI: Cheer up, Bites, warns one letter writer, or you’ll drive yourself to an early grave. Another reader complains that “all you do is pick on The Sacramento Bee.” Bites addresses both critics in one fell swoop, noting that while the editorial staff at The Bee has been pared to the bone, health benefits for those who remain are second to none and even extend to family pets. Indeed, rumor has it that McClatchy Co. CEO Gary Pruitt recently paid $2,500 out of his own pocket to install an artificial hip in an employee’s pet iguana.

Need more good news? Bites gots it. Did you know that when John Wayne died, doctors removed 60-plus pounds of fecal matter from his digestive tract? So claims letter writer Ted Frisby, who warns that similar conditions are stewing inside each and every one of us and will inevitably lead to a grisly death via dehydration and constipation. The good news is that you can do something about it.

“During bible times, mankind lived long lifetimes, even hundreds of years long,” insists Frisby. “Why then and not now? Is it the polluted air? The food we eat? Or the water we all drink?”

As it turns out, it’s the water. It seems we’ve all been drinking “dead” water as opposed to the “live” water consumed in biblical times. Apparently, “live” water is “energized,” whereas those who drink oxygen-deprived “dead” water are more susceptible to the aforementioned maladies. And to think that all this time, Bites thought the Duke was just full of it.

Release the bats: Bites wishes the news was always this good. Unfortunately, we live in a world beset by conspiracy and intrigue, and no one is better equipped to “reveal this new reality” than Robert Urbanek, a Vacaville resident who operates the blog Tonya Harding Shot JFK.

Urbanek spends an inordinate amount of time exploring “meaningful coincidences,” such as the fact that both Tonya Harding and Lee Harvey Oswald have the letters ‘Har’ in their names, came from poor dysfunctional families and learned to use a rifle. For those who believe in reincarnation, Urbanke’s logic is irrefutable.

Tonya Harding assassinated John F. Kennedy in her previous life as Lee Harvey Oswald,” he blogs confidently. “Both Oswald and his victim, President Kennedy, have returned in this life as figure skaters Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan.”

Heavy. Fortunately, Bosnian-American numerologist Edin Tursic is here to lighten things up. The Sacramento resident claims that all of the wars, murders, automobile crashes, oil-tanker spills and other calamities we’ve been experiencing lately are related to the numbers 2-0-0-7, which add up to 9, the number of Mars.

The bad news is that the carnage will continue until the end of the year.

The good news is that there’s only 46 days left to go.