I’m trying to be all healthy and active and whatnot

I Read A Lot of Internets

i was having a crappy day...and then there was an earthquake

I know that the internet is already sick of hearing about this, because it happened like HOURS ago and plus earthquakes happen other places and other things happen, too, and GOD WHY DO WE TALK ABOUT ANYTHING ON THE INTERNET AT ALL JUST BE QUIET EVERYONE. (I’m truly puzzled by this because now that we have all of the communication that we could possibly want, I think we’re realizing, “Oh, right, I want you to shut your face.” More than two tweets in a row about any possible subject and the “Move on, already!” brigade shows up. “Talk about something else for three seconds until I get sick of that and then await further instructions!” Jesus. Go for a walk.)

Anyway, at some point fairly recently, the husband and I were talking about how not into natural disasters we are. I mean, Pittsburgh has its faults, but the worst thing you can say about it, weather-wise, is that winter steps on your neck every year. And aside from the odd blizzard, even that isn’t too bad. We like going about our days not worrying about hurricanes or tornadoes (much). And I think we had watched a video of the earthquake in Japan and were both like, “EFF THAT! I am so glad we don’t have those here. I am not into earthquakes at all.”

Obviously, I had no idea what an earthquake was like. And yesterday, while I was sitting at my desk and felt the building move, a lot of thoughts went through my head.

“I’m pretty sure the building’s moving. That’s odd. It generally doesn’t do that. It kinda feels like how the new Target does when cars drive in the parking garage beneath it. But…we don’t have a parking garage in this building. Maybe they’re doing some kind of heavy construction on this building? But it’s silent. Oh, shit. I bet I’m having a stroke. Or the psychosis is finally taking full control. ”

Then I noticed some of the stuff on my desk vibrating and finally, in a very tiny voice, said, “Um, is the building moving?” Tiny voice because if you’re pretty sure that your brain is imploding, you’re not really keen to announce it. “HEY GUYS! THE BUILDING IS MOVING AND ALSO PUDDING ROGER THAT GOING TO POOP ON THE FLOOR NOW!” But one of my co-workers confirmed that she felt it, too, and had been similarly hesitant to survey everyone else. However, my other co-workers did not feel anything, which put us back to being concerned.

“Could it have been an earthquake?”

“NOOOO! We don’t have those here…Er, well, I guess there was that one about a year ago. Hmm…”

Now, this is, I think, just the cutest thing I’ve ever done: I opened a new tab, pulled up Google, and typed, “earthquakes.”

Just that. Not “earthquakes Pittsburgh” or even “earthquakes WTF?” Like, I went to Google and basically just HURR DURRed at it. But Google knew exactly what I needed and pointed me directly to the NSGS site…which told me that, yes, there was just an earthquake in Virginia and you felt it where you are and aren’t you sweet, just sitting there through it.

“You guys…that WAS an earthquake! Ack! We were supposed to stand in the doorway!” So, I got up and stood in the doorway, even though by that point the earthquake had ended about 10 minutes ago. My emergency preparedness is on a bit of a delay.

Then I got kind of scared. Remembering how it felt made me dizzy and hearing everyone poo-poo it didn’t help. I know that they happen everywhere all the time and are much worse, but the first time experiencing it was pretty scary. I feel fairly certain that West Coast residents might remember being aware of an earthquake for the first time and being freaked out by it, so a little bit of sympathy would have been nice. Just sayin’.

16 comments to i was having a crappy day…and then there was an earthquake

  • Zackly, the first time experiencing anything is is scary, especially when your building isn’t equipped to handle it. Back off and let me have my abject terror, West Coast!

  • I was in the office on the 37th floor and we felt it. Not huge or anything but definitely there and I had myself a panic attack. Had to go down to ground level (even though, in the event of disaster the ground level between a shit ton of huge heavy buildings is not safer than anywhere else) and walk around for a while to get a grip. Intellectually do I know it was no big? Of course. My nervous and gastric systems, though, don’t so much care.

  • Maria

    Felt it on the 11th floor here. Very freaky, especially after the storm on Friday. I love the Cathedral, most of the time, but not when the lights are flickering or, especially, when the coffee in the pot gets waves.

  • Rebecca

    having moved from east to west, I am totally sympathetic. The first time is scary. That said, this made me l-o-l in the doctor’s waiting room. Thanks!

  • YES to all of this, especially “Talk about something else for three seconds until I get sick of that and then await further instructions!”

    • Yeah, I just don’t get it. The surest cure for not wanting to hear what people have to say about anything is to stay out of that communication arena. It’s not rocket surgery.

  • Maureen

    Yeah, about the same thing happened to me, but I blamed it on a sudden onset of vertigo. When I saw some of our building’s security people run down the hall, discussing an “earthquake,” I was out. Yesterday was my son’s first day at kindergarten, and, though it might’ve been a legitimate excuse, there was no way an earthquake was going to keep me from picking him up on time. And, I SO didn’t need a mfing earthquake yesterday, no matter how minor!

  • Emily

    Great post. I was thinking last night about how I didn’t feel it and just kept kind of going through my emails like nothing happened. Is this how I would deal with the apocalypse? “Oh yeah, there was fire outside and people were looting our building, but I was really on top of my emails.”

  • Whitney

    We had an earthquake in the bay area last night, and it was only the 2nd one I haven’t slept through since I moved here. It’s totally scary the first time you are in one.

  • Zig

    I don’t get why people on the Internet can’t just let others feel how they feel or talk about what they want to talk about. It’s not like every Internet user is stuck in an elevator with you. You would think if something on the Internet annoys you, it would be EASIER to ignore and therefore LESS NECESSARY to tell people to shut up.

  • Missy B

    Yeah, so.. I just laughed so hard I woke up your friend, Mike, so there you go. Confirmed aftershock.

    I’m pretty sure I don’t want you to shut up about anything, really.. pretty much ever.

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