This morning I felt my second earthquake in the Bay Area. Funny how these things tend to happen toward the end of August. It was ten minutes to 7am; I was just getting out of bed when I thought I felt a slight tremor. It was a single light jolt. I heard the walls and my bookshelves creak as the wave moved east to west through my studio.
And that was it. It was so nearly unnoticeable that I had to verify on social media, as is the way of things now. Naturally, it was flooded with #earthquake posts time-stamped in the preceding minute, so I wasn’t going crazy.
It took another ten minutes to show up on the USGS site. Just a 4.0, nothing to sneeze at. It was centered in the hills east of Oakland, near the Caldecott Tunnel and within the simulated space of Sim City 2000’s Oakland Firestorm scenario.
On the former sand dunes of the Sunset, the damped tremor barely caused a vibration in my furniture. Across the Bay, apparently it was a newsworthy event, notable enough to carry the #earthquake tag to #1 on Twitter (still) and make headlines throughout the major online news outlets.
This wasn’t nearly as exciting as the first one, the one that finally welcomed me to California after three years. (Aside: exciting!? people are dying out there!) But, today’s was nearly 1000 times weaker.
The good news is that this is the second minor earthquake on the Hayward Fault in a month. The consensus is that the next Big One will happen in the East Bay, and if my understanding of seismology is correct, the more minor quakes we have on a given fault, the less strong the next major one will be. Release of energy, and all that.
Let’s hope so. But until then, I kind of enjoy these little quakes. To quote the poet Anthony Kiedis, they’re just another good vibration.