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Earthquake in LA…

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I had a crazy ear infection last week.  Really painful.  I went to the doctor and got antibiotic ear drops and now I’m just dealing with the leftover congestion.  All that to say, WOW.  I had been having dizzy spells right before the earthquake which my mom claims were my psychic senses having a premonition.  LOL.   Who knows.

Caught this from the USGS which has all the great data — it’s dry as hell though, but still, nice to see what fault lines are active, if you are into that kind of geeky stuff (which clearly, I am….).

Anyway, it’s always news out here whenever there’s an earthquake no matter how small it is.

I actually toured this lab with my friend and chaos companion, Matt Barry.

I actually toured this lab with my friend and chaos companion, Matt Barry.

I was at the CalTech track with my family trying to exercise during the quake (we didn’t notice it at all) and afterward, I saw the news vans outside of the Seismology lab.  That’s the surest sign there’s been some sort of earthquake of note somewhere in the world.

Today’s quake was definitely one that you could feel, a 4.7, but not really the kind of quake that makes you think about relocating to more stable ground. When you live outside of the seismic zones and hear about earthquakes it sounds unthinkable that people would choose to live someplace where a catastrophic event could happen with less than a moment’s notice, but when you’re here you just sort of go with it.  Most of the time.

The View from the 50th floor

The View from the 50th floor

I was downtown last year for an earthquake that scared the crap out of me.  It wasn’t because of the size of the quake (although I think I remember it being a 5.2 or something nuts like that), but because the building I was standing in front of was one of those 70-story skyscrapers.  Out here they build them on rollers and they sway…. I mean like full-on, back and forth S.W.A.Y.I.N.G. Gaaaah.

I was walking from this Starbucks to get back to the parking garage to get my car (thank God I didn’t make it the underground parking space I was in because apparently the lights flickered out down there and folks were in absolute pitch blackness for a few minutes. Double Gaaaaaah.) when this woman grabbed my arm and yanked me over to a parking pillar.  I almost knocked her out. LOL.  I was pulling away from her, but she kept a tight grip on my arm and kept telling me we were going to be safer next to the pillar and under the walkway then “out there”.

Now, there are a fair number of mentally ill people hanging around downtown.  Sad state of affairs, but true.  She was wearing a suit, but what the heck?  I didn’t even notice the earthquake until I almost lost my balance.  Then, I felt the pitch and roll of the building compensating for the quake and her words actually registered.  See, downtown is filled with high-rises and they all have windows.  Hmmm, not my first thought when I think about earthquake damage, but even with safety glass raining from the sky in small tempered bits, were talking a shit load of the stuff, all coming down at once, possibly in sheets. (I was once in a safety briefing at the Gas Tower and they told us that because we were on the 50th floor we had to prepare to shelter in place for 3-10 days.  Uhhh, what the heck?  Apparently, they anticipate that the streets will be filled with so much glass and debris it will be approximately 5-feet deep (or something equally insane) and there will be no way to navigate until they’ve cleared the streets).

When you live in SoCal, you get used to the rumble and you put it out of your mind.

We weren't doing THIS....

We weren't doing THIS....

There are tons of places I don’t want to be if there’s an earthquake, but outside walking with my family is definitely a good one.

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Written by Alyss Dixson

May 18, 2009 at 7:41 am

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