Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Number Nine! Number Nine!




I am totally looking forward to the big earthquake we're going to have, and that's one way you can tell I've never been in a big earthquake. You can't tell by my hair. It always looks like this.

The biggest earthquake I was in happened early one morning, shortly after I'd gotten up to go to work. I walked into the kitchen and stuff was swinging back and forth. I stared for a while until I finally came to a conclusion. "That ain't right," I concluded. The rumbling lasted about 45 seconds. It was pretty exciting. My friend Lisa had just moved into a new place the day before, and had just stepped out of the shower and flipped on the switch for the heat lamp when the earthquake started. So she flipped it back off. Any of you would have done the same thing.

I do know, however, that big earthquakes are invariably described as terrifying, and to everybody, and I doubt that I will be the exception. As it is, I can be startled into urination by a floating lint ball if the sun catches it just right. In an earthquake, I will not only crap my pants, I'll crap yours.

Our impending earthquake is going to be so big, the ground will undulate up and down six feet for minutes at a time. It's going to take out our bridges and send the homes in the West Hills sailing into the Willamette River. In my neighborhood, it's going to turn the soil to soup and us to stew meat and dumplings. Haitians will hold bake sales for us. It's going to be a doozy. A number niner.

The reason I am so cheered by the prospect is that I am immensely comforted by my own insignificance, and a whomping geological event should be able to point that out quite nicely. In the sea of life, the way I see it, we are not even plankton: we are that little, but not as attractive or important. If the earth wants to shake out its blankets and bounce us on top like fleas, I'm not in a position to say it shouldn't. We can whine about it all we want, but we'll bounce just the same.

The earth has been shaking out blankets for a very long time, which is how it happens to have the ripples and corrugation it does, and it isn't about to stop now, so there's no point in taking it personally. Nevertheless, that's just what some people do. I had always understood that our earthquake will come to us courtesy of the Cascadia Subduction Zone fault,
where the Juan de Fuca plate slides under the land mass. The ocean plate grinds against the continental plate and ultimately ruptures it. That's how I always understood it works, but it turns out that homosexuality has been the problem all along. I guess we have outbreaks of raging sodomism along this fault line every 300 years or so. You don't have to believe me--it's in the geologic record. I don't know what was up with the Tillamook and Siuslaw Indians that were blown away by the last huge earthquake on the coast in 1700, but you can bet your loincloth they had it coming. The flamers.


27 comments:

  1. No, the real reason is scantily-clad women:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/apr/19/women-blame-earthquakes-iran-cleric

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  2. You. Are. Stark. Raving. Nutz. Isn't it great?

    I would caution you about the sinkholes. Not the ones in the sink, but outdoors when the earth opens up. Some of them, I understand, go all the way to China should you step, fall, or roll into one.

    Personally, I'd order the moo shoo pork. I hear it's excellent this time of year when the shoos are in season.

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  3. Elizabeth BrewsterMay 19, 2010 at 8:28 AM

    Following your poo posts, I had grave misgivings about reading about a "number niner."

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  4. I have a thing about tornadoes and earthquakes. I'd like to experience each one from a safe distance.

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  5. Number nine, number two...all the same to Murr.

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  6. One scale is logarithmic, the other is just...logs.

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  7. "...startled into urination by a floating lint ball if the sun catches it just right."

    Juan de Fuca, Two de Fuca...that's how it starts...

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  8. Homosexuality or scantily clad women, either way science has proven it is someone's "fault".

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  9. I'm afraid that you may be mixing up the facts here. Clearly, the cause of all this earthquake activity is Scantily-Clad Homosexual Indians.

    I know that this is true because when I looked at Murr's picture of the Indian, I felt the earth move. Just a little. (This could be because I'm over fifty)

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  10. If I find crap in my pants after the Big One hits, I'll know who to blame!

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  11. Having lived in California all my life, I pretty much scoffed at earthquakes -- until the Northridge quake in '94. I was living in L.A. and that sucker picked my bed up and shook it up and down for freakin' ever. My computer fell on the floor and, as I was writing on a deadline at the time, I just sat it up under my desk and continued to work there through the next few days of aftershocks. I was doing a whole lot of pants peeing and crapping. I don't scoff at earthquakes anymore. And now I have a desk big enough to put a bed under.

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  12. I couldn't wait to experience an earthquake after moving to SoCal and was even disappointed when the first one happened while I was away in WY. Then, FINALLY, it happened. I don't remember how big, but it was all the way over by Joshua Tree and my office was rocking and rolling. For a while. I kinda lost my appetite for the earth shaking after that.

    But now, after moving back to North Georgia and living in the middle of the woods in a cabin with a basement, I'm thinking I would trade these dang bugs for a shaker any day!

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  13. I thought the problem--as determined by a very authoritative Muslim cleric with a direct line to Allah--was cleavage. And, personally, I can see the connection, pardon the pun. All that shaking up top is inevitably bound to lead even more shaking down below.

    If you do die in the Big One, at least you can take this with you: You win the unofficial best line of the week contest that I secretly judge yet rarely tell anybody about. And that line was, "In an earthquake, I will not only crap my pants, I'll crap yours."

    That line set my overly ample stomach shaking more than a 9'er on the old Richter Scale.

    Here's to getting fuc'd over by the Juan de Fuca, and soon!

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  14. Julia's right. Homosexuality doesn't cause earthquakes, it causes tsunamis. Duh. Everyone knows that.

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  15. Rosemary LombardMay 19, 2010 at 9:41 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  16. Rosemary LombardMay 19, 2010 at 9:59 PM

    Hey, Blogspot, you said my comment was published. It must have fallen down the crack to China. Again . . .
    It was Saint Andreas's fault when we in the Bay Area got a good shake-up in '89. My front half was in a doghouse that was becoming a turtle house by my painting the interior a vivid Chinese red (a favorite color of turtles, if you didn't know). You'd think I'd be the first one welcomed in China, but the earth did not open its maw for me. It just rolled in waves like the ones that made me the first one to the side of the boat. So how did I respond? I put the lid on the paint can so it wouldn't spill on the yard. Meanwhile, my husband was holding up the massive bookcase hutch he'd built above his door desk but hadn't bothered to attach to the wall. Grown-ups do the darnedest things.

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  17. Rosemary LombardMay 19, 2010 at 10:03 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  18. And the clever thing is that all those sinful shirt-lifters will tumble down into the ginormous cracks and never be seen again. Problem solved.

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  19. Just go with it, Ed.
    St. Mikey, dive under your case!
    injaynesworld, now you know to keep a chamber pot under your desk.
    Olivia: I'm in your corner on the bugs issue.
    Do turtles give an early warning by ambling in an agitated fashion?
    One of these days I'm going to just write a title and let all you fine, science-literate people write my post for me.

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  20. Thank you for straightening this out. So I guess it is advised to keep as far as possible from any gay pride parades?

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  21. A day without your blog is a day without the sun. I feel like I've met a kindred soul. But since I'm a very visible grandparent, I need to be very discreet round about. It is in private in the AM on my computer that I get to be myself, living vicariously through your blog!
    I'm still looking for bluebird poop sacks.

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  22. Suit yourself, Jerry, but I'm kind of into earth movements. And thank you, visible but anonymous grandparent! Our chickadee parents are hauling out fecal sacs. Now that I know about them, I see them.

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  23. To unmitigated me - I have been through both earthquakes and tornadoes. Do not want to experience either again ever. Murr, you got it all.

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  24. To unmitigated me - I have been through both earthquakes and tornadoes. Do not want to experience either again ever. Murr, you got it all.

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  25. Suit yourself, Jerry, but I'm kind of into earth movements. And thank you, visible but anonymous grandparent! Our chickadee parents are hauling out fecal sacs. Now that I know about them, I see them.

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  26. A day without your blog is a day without the sun. I feel like I've met a kindred soul. But since I'm a very visible grandparent, I need to be very discreet round about. It is in private in the AM on my computer that I get to be myself, living vicariously through your blog!
    I'm still looking for bluebird poop sacks.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I couldn't wait to experience an earthquake after moving to SoCal and was even disappointed when the first one happened while I was away in WY. Then, FINALLY, it happened. I don't remember how big, but it was all the way over by Joshua Tree and my office was rocking and rolling. For a while. I kinda lost my appetite for the earth shaking after that.

    But now, after moving back to North Georgia and living in the middle of the woods in a cabin with a basement, I'm thinking I would trade these dang bugs for a shaker any day!

    ReplyDelete