The unexpected earthquake Open Thread

I’m embarrassed to admit this, but I have absolutely nothing to say about today’s East Coast earthquake, except that I’m glad no one was hurt.  I don’t see the quake as a portent from either God or Gaia.  It was just one of those things that happens.

Do you have any comments?

UPDATE:  The best tweet.

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  • MacG

    I heard that Obama called a press conference to announce that there is no need to panic.  We are still a 6.0 region.

  • Charles Martel

    I’m not too surprised by this quake. The East has had some fairly large temblors in the past–the 1886 Charlseton quake (<>7.0 on the Richter) and the Boston quake of 1755 (>6.0 on the Richter).

    But the granddaddies of all non-western quakes were the four New Madrid temblors in 1811-12, massive shakes that reached up to an estimated 8.0 in the Richter. That is some serious swaying. Anyway, those quakes pretty much leveled most communities in the Mississippi River Valley between Memphis and St. Louis, and even affected the flow of the river.

    The New Madrid Fault recently has begun showing a lot more activity. An 8.0 earthquake there, reverberating through the great river valley’s loose topsoils, would be catastrophically more destructive than anything that has ever hit San Francisco or Los Angeles.  

  • macbethderham

    Amused by irony here in NY.  We felt it for about 40 seconds, but both my college kids are in California, and missed it.

  • dianemadeline

    I was at work in my library in Arlington for the earthquake. A low rumbling started before the shaking. I have never experienced an earthquake before so had no idea what was happening. Then everything started to shake and rattle – there are metal shelves in the bookcases. I honestly thought it was some kind of attack. I figured out it was an earthquake when it seemed to go on for too long. I didn’t expect the experience to make me feel nauseous and wonder if it was the thought of an attack or the movement of the earth that made me feel that way.

  • Bookworm

    Dianemadeline:  That sounds quite frightening.  Earthquakes upset the natural order of things.  Even in areas where we expect them, we still believe the earth should be stable.

  • Ymarsakar

    Gaia is mad at us for preventing her extinction of so many species.

  • Indigo Red

    A CBS video reports, “At the Justice Dept, Attornney General Eric Holder says his first thought was terrorism.”

    Seems that despite his usual dismissal of danger from terrorists, his real world reaction is terrorism first. Of course, I’m assuming Islamic terrorism, whereas Holder is possibly thinking angry, white, male, patriot, TEA Party terrorism.

  • Charles Martel

    Easy for you to make a joke about it, Indigo. Have you ever really seen a mob of fiftyish, white, pot-bellied, balding Judeo-Christian men in Bermuda shorts and high black socks commandeer a public space with their homemade placards, wives, sign-up booths and rented bullhorns? Not to mention the utter spotlessness of the plazas and squares they demonstrate in after disturbing them with their caterwauling. The eerily whistle-clean appearance is appallingly anal-retentive—a foretaste, so to speak, of what they would do to this country if they ever got into power.

  • Indigo Red

    I’ll have you know, Charles, I am one of those fiftyish, white, pot-bellied, balding Judeo-Christian men in Bermuda shorts and high black socks and the next time our TEA Party Patriots meet, I’ll bring up (again!) the cleanliness thing.


    I didn’t expect the experience to make me feel nauseous and wonder if it was the thought of an attack or the movement of the earth that made me feel that way.

    For what it’s worth…earthquakes leave me nauseous with a headache. No cruise ships for me, they feel like a constant low grade quake. Luckily, I was driving during the event – never felt a thing. 

    Indigo Red

    I’ll bring up (again!) the cleanliness thing.
    Be careful, the next thing they’ll accuse you of is godliness ;


  • heather

    In VA:  my kids were at school, and didn’t even notice!  They were so upset  that they missed out.