Faith Can Move Mountains... But Dynamite Works Better

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Was That Us, Or Did The Earth Just Move?

Originally dated the 23rd of June, 2010....


Well then, we had ourselves an earthquake today.

Around quarter to one or so, a magnitude 5 quake rumbled through the Ottawa Valley, with an epicenter 60 kilometers north in Quebec. We get them here from time to time. The Valley itself rests over a minor fault, so it's certainly not my first quake. It felt like a train passing by. I was in a campus library, and it was certainly strong enough to notice.

I was writing at the time, realized what it was, and very quickly everyone was being asked to leave. No problem, really. It was just saving my work, closing the windows, and logging out. Done in 10 seconds, and on my way. Most people were orderly about it. One fellow, however, was practically sprinting out the exit stairs as I was leaving. He'd have knocked over a grandmother with a walker if she had been in his way. Sorry, old chap, that was not your finest hour. Really, have you ever heard of chivalry? Or general manners? Or not making yourself look like a coward as you dash away in a panic? No one else was panicking.

Anyway, it was going to take awhile before things got settled down, so I decided to leave. I headed for downtown, since I had to come this way anyway. Every once in awhile, there were people gathered together, and I'd hear snippets of information. The quake had been felt as far as Toronto, Montreal, and into New York state. Kids outside a school out in the countryside to the south hadn't actually felt it, but teachers inside had. People, after a quake, will, of course, talk about the quake. I passed by a house where a tenant was grimacing at his foundation, and pointed it out to me. There was a crack in between the foundation stones. That's a bit surprising. Usually quakes of this magnitude do very little damage.

Downtown, a good number of people were still outside office towers as I arrived. It was going to take quite awhile for alarms to be turned off, so odds are the whole working day is shot. On the other hand, the street vendors were probably making a killing on hot dog and burger sales, let alone the cafes.

Now I hear that south of the border, this was being called a Toronto earthquake in the media. Sigh. How typical. A note to the US media: Toronto's a long way off from here. And if they had a quake, their local media would be talking about it as if it was the end of the world. Remember, it's the same city that once called in the army to help with a big snowfall.

The question is will the buffoon currently occupying the Prime Minister's office notice? Or will he suggest the earthquake was rhetoric coming from the Opposition trying to cause trouble just ahead of the G20 conference?

More likely, he might ask, "Will this make me look bad?"

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