On Wednesday, the day after a 5.4-magnitude earthquake rocked L.A., I banged out for the blogosphere a joking account of my experience. The story, which I had cast as a spoof scientific experiment, contains within it a true account of what happened to me when my fifth-floor downtown office started rocking -- and how I responded. It went like this:
- Dip chicken wing into blue cheese dressing.
- Attempt to bite chicken wing.
- Realize that I must have miscalculated the exact location of the chicken wing.
- Bite again.
- Realize my mouth is still empty.
- Stiffen my resolve to conquer chicken wing, tuning out the mild nagging curiosity as to why a chicken wing held firmly in my hand is moving.
- Block out all noise that might deter me from my laser-focused goal, especially the annoying voices of colleagues yelling, “Earthquake! Earthquake!”
- Attempt again to bite chicken wing.
Yup. That’s pretty much my experience of L.A.’s terrifying 5.4 temblor last week. I didn’t freakin’ notice it. My primitive lizard brain was too focused on a primal survival need to process an immediate, direct threat to my survival.
I’m frequently amused by my own stupidity. Very frequently. But sometimes, with a few days’ added perspective, my amusement can turn to horror (amused horror, but still).
In the end, though, there is some good news here. I can move forward in my chosen profession as a writer, never having to wonder whether I missed my calling as a firefighter, MASH surgeon, or crisis counselor.
Causes June Casagrande Supports
Planned Parenthood, ClimateCrisis.net, the Richard Dawkins Foundation, Pet Orphans of Southern California, KIVA