Hoping for the Big One
They all still live on the East Coast, and they want you dead, California. I was reminded of this a few months ago when I was reading an article where a movie critic wondered in how many films the Golden Gate Bridge would be destroyed this year. Well, there’s yet another movie out about a mega-earthquake, and I’ve seen the trailer, so the answer is at least one.
There was a time, not so many years ago, when the thing for East Coasters to do, particularly New Yorkers, was to pack up and go west, young man or woman, go west. Many did, but of course most did not. And those who didn’t had a multitude of excuses for not doing so, ranging from the valid, like not wanting to be so far from their family, to the absurd, such as not wanting to lose the option of buying an onion bagel at three in the morning.
And the years passed by, and they always wondered. Should I have made the move? Should I have had my California adventure? I was surprised recently when several East Coasters told me they could never live in California…because of the earthquakes. It seemed like such a silly reason. I could say I would never live in Florida because of the alligators or in Manhattan because, well, how much time do you have?
The truth is here in California I never even think about earthquakes. Until, that is, I’m actually in one. And it is during those five or six seconds that I realize that I must be insane to live in a place where you can’t even count on the ground to stay still. And then the shaking stops and I forget all about it. Until the next one.
But don’t kid yourself, California. They want you dead. They want an off-the-chart twelve point oh quake to break off the entire state, nice and neat at the Nevada border, and then sink forever into that ocean we all seem to think is so great. And only then will they be at ease with that decision they made thirty, forty, fifty years ago. Whew, they’ll say. I could have died in that earthquake. I knew going out there was a bad idea.