A new poll from Reuters reports that approximately one in seven people believe that their life will end with the lives of the rest of humanity. Put more simply, 15% of people believe the apocalypse will come in their lifetime.
Reuters polled people all over the world — nearly 20,000 — and found that a big chunk of Earthwalkers believe in humanity's impending doom. Some pollees got a little more specific with their beliefs in existence-cessation: 10% of them believe the world will end in late December of this year, citing the crazy-people-verified interpretation of the Mayan calendar.
Belief in the impending cosmic cancelation of all Earth programming (Earth is kind of like the cosmic Freaks and Geeks; sure our ratings aren't great, but we have so much potential! Alpha Centuri is kind of like Yes, Dear, because it's the worst) varied greatly by nation. The French were the least likely to believe the end of the world is coming, with only 6% supporting the notion. The nations with the highest levels of eschaton-related concerns were Turkey, and of course, the good ol' United States of America.
About 10% of people "with lower education or household income levels, as well as those under thirty-five years old," may not believe the apocalypse is coming, but do have "anxiety" about the prospect. It's kind of a silly thing to worry about, because there's really nothing you can do about it. Unless you're a superhero and/or avatar of a deity. Honestly, the end of the world doesn't bother me too much — if I'm gonna die, I can at least take comfort in the fact that everyone will die with me. I mean, if I don't get to live to see consumer jetpacks, I don't see why anyone else should.
Just remember, the next time you're on a bus with five Americans, one of them believes the world is approaching its expiration date. That's statistics. They're right 100% of the time.